Spring in the Columbarium

April 21st, 2014

P3270255P3270254P3280278    After Easter Sunday, the columbarium was filled with the colors of Spring. Over 100 people brought in beautiful flowers for their loved ones during the weekend. We wanted to share the gorgeous new flowers with our readers! If you have family in our care and didn’t have the time to stop by, you’re more than welcome to visit during the week to see how beautiful the niches are. We are open 7 days a week, 9 AM to 5 PM.

 

 

 

 

 

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March Caregiver Award Winner

April 17th, 2014

marchcaregiverwinnerWinner is Jennifer Baker of Children’s Hospital (Child Life Department)

 

Evergreen Washelli’s Caregiver of the Month for March 2014 is Jennifer Baker of Children’s Hospital.  Jennifer was nominated by a family who lost their 4 day old baby.  Jennifer made this tragedy a little less painful.  Jennifer loves photography and in her spare time brought in her camera to take photos of the baby for the family.  She took  lovely photos of the baby  and even involved their  7 year old daughter.  Jennifer didn’t stop there, she created a baby book of the photos for the family,  and it was beautiful.  The scrapbook included photos, cut outs, locks of the babies hair, and hand and foot prints – that she &  the older sister did together!  Jennifer exemplifies what it means to be a Caregiver!

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Father’s Day 2014

April 17th, 2014

CaptureIn honor of father’s day, Evergreen Washelli will be giving away free bookmarks at the front desk from 9 am – 5 pm on Father’s day weekend, June 13th-15th. With inspirational quotes on both sides, the beautiful bookmarks are a great way to commemorate your father, even if he can’t be with you anymore.

After Anna Jarvis created the concept of Mother’s Day in the early 20th century to honor her mother’s memory, Sonora Dodd in Spokane, WA wanted a similar holiday to celebrate fathers. The new holiday gained national popularity in the 1930′s, sparking the traditions we know and love today.

Stop by the front desk on the west side of Aurora Ave on June 15th for your bookmark!

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Finding a Balance: Self Care Quiz

April 17th, 2014

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Originally published in June 2010 by Patti Cox on www.hellogrief.com, thank you!
Grievers often spend a lot of time taking care of the “business” of grief, and adjusting the new responsibilities that follow. Taking care of other family members, household chores, financial matters, and medical claims can be extremely difficult – while busy taking care of these things, grievers often overlook taking care of themselves.

It is important to find a good balance between the things that really need to be taken care of and taking care of yourself! Think of it as having an emotional bank account, in which you make “deposits” when you do things to that help you relax and find comfort – listening to your favorite music, reading, exercising, being with friends, vacationing, meditating, or other healthy activities that make you feel good.

On the other hand, you will make “withdrawals” from your emotional bank account by doing some necessary things such as the hard work of grief, taking care of business, or taking care of others. You also make a withdrawal from your emotional bank account by doing things that could be harmful to yourself physically or emotionally.

Just as in our financial lives, it is important to maintain a positive balance; make sure your withdrawals are not exceeding your deposits. To see how well you’re doing with your own emotional and physical bank account, take the self care quiz provided below.

1. How well are you caring for yourself emotionally by doing something good for yourself or using your favorite healthy coping skills?

_____Daily (5 pts.)

_____2-3 times per week (3 pts.)

_____1 time per week (0 pts.)

_____Less than 1 time per week (-3 pts.)

_____Almost never (-5 pts.)

2. How well are you caring for yourself physically?

____ How often are you exercising? (5 pts. for 5x per week, 3 pts. for 3x per week, -3 for anything less than 3x per week)

____ Are you eating healthy meals? (5 pts. for always, 3 pts. for usually, 0 pts. for sometimes, -3 pts. for rarely, -5 pts. for never)

____ Are you sleeping the number of hours you consider necessary for yourself? (5 pts. if you always do so, 3 pts. for usually, 0 pts. for occasionally, -3 if rarely and -5 for never)

____ Do you ever use prescription drugs beyond their recommended dosage? -5 pt.s if yes)

____ Do you drink alcoholic beverages more often than you used to? (-3 pts. if yes, once or twice per week. -5 pts. if more than twice per week)

3. Grieving people often need to give themselves permission to take a break from their grief, permission to have fun, to laugh and to be happy. They need to feel and experience whatever their grief presents them with, but they also need to give themselves “grief breaks” and distract themselves periodically.  How often are you taking a break from your grief?

____ On a regular basis (5 pts.)

____ Usually (3 pts.)

____ Rarely (-3 pts.)

____ Never (-5 pts.)

4. Additional stress on top of grief can be extremely taxing. Give yourself 3 pts. for each of the following stress reduction techniques that you regularly use:

____ avoiding known stressors

____ exercise

____ listening or playing music

____ prayer

____ meditation

____ yoga

____ writing or journaling

____ breathing exercises

____ reading funny books or watching funny movies/videos

____ asking for help when you feel overwhelmed

____ spending time with friends or family

5. Grief work takes a lot of time and energy; grievers often need to relax their standards and self- expectations temporarily. How often do you cut yourself some slack and relax your standards because you’re grieving?

____ regulary (5 pts.)

____ occassionally (3 pts.)

____ rarely (-3 pts.)

____ never (-5 pts.)

Calculating your score:

21 or more points: Good job. You are doing a great job of taking care of yourself during the grief journey. It is harder to find the time to care for yourself while grieving than many people understand. You have found a way to maintain necessary balance and keep your emotional bank full. Continue doing so!

12-20 points: You’re off to a great start! You already make time for yourself, but could help yourself even more by adding more self-care techniques, reducing any negative or harmful coping skills, or by doing the positive self care you’re already doing on a more regular basis.

Less than 12 points: You deserve the opportunity to heal in a healthy way both physically and emotionally. If you are not taking time to relax, and enjoy yourself admist the difficult work of grief and caring for others, you are not being fair to yourself. Incorporate at least some of the recommendations above into your life and make the necessary adjustments in places where you lost points.

It is important to remember that coping skills can be anything you enjoy doing that make you feel better and provide comfort, without hurting youself physically or emotionally. No matter how big or how small, do something good for yourself everyday!

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2014 Rose Placement Was A Success!

April 7th, 2014
IMG_7686 IMG_7694 IMG_7710

The 4th annual rose placement on April 5th, 2014 was a huge success! The turnout was wonderful, and we would like to thank each and every one of our volunteers for their support. After the 7th annual Ten Grands concert at Benaroya hall, their stage roses were donated to be placed on the graves of veterans in the Evergreen Washelli Veterans Cemetery.

Take a moment to view the photos taken of this wonderful event to honor those that served our country! We would also like to thank the UW Naval ROTC for their coordination of the event, and The Seattle Symphony for their donation of 1,300 roses.

 

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Tree Tour 2014

March 12th, 2014

Tree Tour Guide Arthur Lee Jacobson

Tree Tour Guide Arthur Lee Jacobson

Capture

On Sunday, May 11, 2014,
renowned arborist Arthur
Lee Jacobson
 will lead a walking tour of Evergreen Washelli Memorial Park. Mister Jacobson
guided tour

participants through the beautiful collection of rare and significant trees we have on the grounds.

Tickets are $5; they are available on site on the day of the event, or by calling (206) 362-5200. Tickets are limited! Proceeds from ticket sales will go to the Arboretum Foundation and Plant Amnesty. Kindly meet us at Evergreen Washelli at 2 PM, the tour will continue until 3:30 PM.

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January Caregiver Award Winner

February 26th, 2014

caregiverawardwinnerjanuaryTreicyCastillo

Evergreen Washelli would like to congratulate Treicy Castillo-Ramirez of Capability Homecare as our Caregiver of the Month winner for January 2014.  A Guatemala native, Treicy has always wanted to be a nurse since she was a little girl.  She loves taking care of people and it makes her feel good to know she is making a difference in their lives.  Treicy carries a positive attitude into every situation and is always willing to fill in for others, just so she  can help!  Treicy goes above and beyond for her patients on a daily basis and gives her clients her best!!

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A Different Kind of Valentine

February 15th, 2014
Special thanks to Alisha Krukowski for submitting this article to www.hellogrief.org
Valentines Day cards with hearts
The days and weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day are so exhilarating, aren’t they? You scuttle around buying boxes of chocolates, oversized teddy bears, and bundles of flowers to show your loved ones how very much they are indeed loved. There’s just nothing that could spoil such a dreamy time of year for anyone.

Except maybe, if you’re like me, and this time of year is also the time someone you love died.  Or for that matter, if this time of year just reminds you how much you miss someone who has died, no matter when that death happened.

My mom died on February 13th, 2007. Valentine’s Day Eve.  I was never the type to expect a dozen red roses anyway, but since Mom died there has been a dark grey cloud over this cotton-candy pink holiday. In recent years, I’ve just let Valentine’s Day slip by me like any other day. My husband knows that a card is more than enough now, and that pretty much covers our celebration of the day. He is keenly aware that any sense of romance I might be feeling is far outweighed by the lingering memory of Moms’ death.

I was planning (or rather not planning) for Valentine’s Day to come and go as usual this year. And then, as it often does, my mom’s memory came knocking softly at my heart. Mom loved holidays, loved the idea of spreading cheer and love and chocolate any time it was remotely reasonable to do so. Much as I wanted to pretend that Valentine’s Day was just another day, and that the majority of the country was just drunk on the fumes of freshly printed Hallmark cards, I felt something different this year. I felt challenged to reclaim this day.

I decided that I wanted to do something that was fun, fairly easy, and likely to bring joy to others. I also decided that I wanted it to be something that still felt somewhat “normal” for me, since the idea of celebrating Valentine’s Day at all was already a pretty big deviation from my routine. It’s all about baby steps with me and my grief.

I remembered sitting at the kitchen table as a kid, carefully folding and tearing the strips of Valentine’s Day cards Mom let me pick out from the store. She would always ask me who I wanted to give one to, even though she knew we bought enough for everyone in my class. Looking back, I realize this was her undercover Mom way of finding out who my BFF of the week was, and which boy I had a crush on. Smooth, Mom, very smooth.

 

I don’t have a roomful of classmates anymore, but I do love the idea of everyone getting a card, no matter how cool or fun or popular they might feel.  I love the idea of people having a random moment in their day when they feel valued, cared for, and loved.  I thought of things I loved about Mom, things I had told her, and some I had not. I thought of how happy it would make anyone to hear things that someone loved about them. And just like that, I had my plan.

I bought a box of children’s Valentine’s Day cards that came with tiny little envelopes. I chose ones with little bears wearing funny outfits, because Mom would have loved the silliness of them. I sat at my desk and carefully tore the strips of cards apart. I could almost feel Mom at my shoulder.

I wrote tiny messages to my mom on the cards. They weren’t anything spectacular, just simple little messages of love: Your smile makes my heart sing. I love the way your hair catches the sun. Thank you for being an example of kindness. You are loved. I sealed them into the envelopes, and wrote the same thing on the outside of each: If you found this, it is for you.

I stuffed the cards into my bag, and left the house. With no particular plan, I took a little tour of my city, leaving cards along the way.  I tucked a card under the windshield wiper of a beat up car. I slipped one into a sneaker on display in a store. I left one on the counter at a coffee shop, and one stuck between two sodas in a drink cooler. With each one, I thought of Mom, of the many things I loved and missed about her. I thought of the joy she would have felt in knowing that my love for her was bringing a little happiness into the lives of others.  I thought of the strength I felt in making a choice to lean into, rather than away from, my feelings of grief that surround this holiday.

My grief was telling me to ignore Valentine’s Day. My mom’s memory was telling me to find a way to celebrate that felt real and right in my heart. I won’t pretend that hiding children’s cards in random spots for strangers to find is going to be the right way for you to celebrate your loved one’s memory. I will say that you sometimes need to try something different when the thing you’ve been doing is just not bringing you any sense of happiness or peace.

I couldn’t have guessed that a two dollar box of cartoon bear cards could help me to feel that Valentine’s Day might be worth celebrating after all.  I sent my love for Mom out into the universe, and that simple act helped me to feel filled with love myself. It’s an amazing thing to start with grief and sadness and finish with love and peace. Who knows, I may even ask my husband for a box of chocolates this year.

What ways will you celebrate your loved one this Valentine’s Day?

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National Wear Red Day

February 15th, 2014

Heart disease kills more women than all forms of cancer combined.

Wear Red. Raise Your Voice.
Go Red on National Wear Red Day
®


National Wear Red Day is a public awareness day urging everyone — women, men, businesses, towns, schools, the media, buildings and landmarks — to “go red” to bring attention to the No. 1 killer of American women, cardiovascular disease. On Friday February 1st, wear something red and show your support of this national movement that helps raise awareness to empower women to reduce their risk. By conducting a Wear Red Day fundraiser, you will help advance research and education to prevent and treat heart disease and stroke.

The Red Dress® and National Wear Red Day
The Heart Truth® created and introduced the Red Dress℠ as the national symbol for women and heart disease awareness in 2002 to remind women of the need to protect their heart health, and inspire them to take action. National Wear Red Day promotes the symbol and provides an opportunity for everyone—men and women alike—to unite in this life-saving awareness-to-action movement by wearing anything and everything red!

go red

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June 14th is Flag Day

February 4th, 2014

100_0422CaptureOn Friday June 14th, 2014, Evergreen Washelli will celebrate Flag Day, which commemorates the adoption of the United States flag in 1777. The American flag flies free – a unifying symbol of our nation that soars proudly above our homes, camp sites, small businesses, corporate offices, hospitals and schools. The U.S. Flag Code states that the flag “when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.”

Evergreen Washelli is in need of 5’ x 9 ½’ flags for The Avenue of Colors in our Veterans Memorial Cemetery, as well as for retiring flags upon Veteran’s cremations.

You may donate by bringing in a flag for donation, donating any dollar amount towards a new flag, or donating $70 for a new flag in memory of a loved one.

If you wish to donate a flag or funds to purchase them, please contact Brenda Spicer at (206)362-5200.

We will accept flags for retirement on Flag Day.

 

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