Glowing, radiant health is the new black. Our Green Table is serving it up, for the whole body! Healthy recipes and tips, the latest on eco-friendly food and "skin food"products and a head's up on ingredient safety are all woven into family-centered stories and discoveries. Bring informed, aware and empowered looks good on everyone!

Abrazos! xox Penny

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Peas in a Pod: Potentially Life-Saving Mail Order

(I am including this info as a "Women and Wednesdays" post because it does still seems that we gals are both the shoppers and caregivers in most families, but guys, feel free to read and join in!)

It's Wednesday and my mom and I are getting ready to do some grocery shopping...together. What??? How can that be? My mom and I live about 1200 miles and a plane, bus, ferry and hike-up-the-hill apart.

When I was up in New York last, I had to do some switching around of Mom's caregivers and I decided to try a new approach. For any of you in "The Sandwich" and involved in the care of a parent, here are three things that I did that have made the last couple of months better for everyone involved. Maybe these will be helpful for your own family's well-being...even if you live close to each other. 

Number 1: Because my mom cannot drive and has to pay a driver to do random errands, which works out great as long as it's a "good day", I became good friends with both the owner of the hardware store and also the head pharmacist at the only pharmacy on her island and explained our situation. Now, in emergencies, I can call them up, they know me and they can run any light bulbs, batteries, Rx, shampoo, whatever up the hill to her and help us out in emergencies. They are very supportive and comforting members of our team.

Number 2: I hired a caregiver who has the same primary interest as Mom: food. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, does it? Now Mom can keep clipping recipes, planning menus and "pea in the pod", Beverly whips them up. This keeps Mom engaged in her favorite activity and happily anticipating Beverly's care as a partnership instead of as a dependency. Mom still feels in control of the menus, the kitchen and cooking and is eating fresher food. She even made a comment today when we talked, "Pensy, I am eating so many wonderful vegetables!" Score!

Number 3: I order the bulk of her groceries online through a service called Peapod. Brilliant and a godsend. Mom gives me her list over the phone; we talk about the goodies she is ordering and meals she will be having. Then, with a click, I got 'em ordered up. They are delivered to her kitchen counter (not door!) every Saturday and the total delivery charge and gas usage is far, far less than if she were to head off island with Beverly and do this herself. Peapod is fabulous, and there are lots of similar services available from other stores.

(And here is another added benefit: Last Saturday, the Peapod driver called me because he got no answer at my mom's door. Scary. I called her while he waited. No answer. You could hear my heart pounding 1200 miles away. I gave him permission to get the key, go in and do a room by room search which he did and she was not there. Anywhere. Near panic. Long story short, after about 30 wrenching minutes later, I ''found" her and all turned out well. Kindly, conscientious folks those Peapod people.)

This got me curious about my own life and how I sometimes do drive all over town (not so much this summer as I am still not using my car's a/c) on a hunt for a certain food. Here is what I found out about the eco-impact of online shopping. According to the Center for Energy and Climate Solutions, ground shipping will use 1/10th the energy I would use driving back and forth to various stores. And so, it can be a very good choice, 10 times better, for you and the environment...and even better if you order up with some pals and several people aren't running all over town! Yay!

With that in mind, here at two items I can't wait to click away for! Thanks to the Divine Ms. M for turning my taste to these two fabulous sauces from

and Friday, I will tell you all about how I first tasted these!

Now that you have saved so much time and energy shopping, here is a lovely, relaxing tip from Gonnie's "book".

Gonnie's Tired Eyes Exercise


"A simple exercise which you can do any time of day...Close the eyes tightly, squeezing them shut and then, let go. Repeat several times but relax completely between each squeeze. This strengthens the muscles around the eyes."

And, eyes refreshed, you are now ready for more shopping!

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