The Family Center: Resources for Families, Individuals and Professionals

Serving our community through programs and resources vital to today’s families.

How do we proceed after a dementia diagnosis?

Ask the Experts by Barbara Roden

Q: Our father has been diagnosed with early signs of dementia. What approach should we take with him now? What activities can we still plan with him? What should we expect in the future?

A: The first step may be to determine at which stage of his disease is your father. One method of assessing that is called The Senior Gems®. This six-stage classification system, created and developed by Teepa Snow, Positive Approach, LLC, is a method for identifying the ...

Read more: How do we proceed after a dementia diagnosis?


The Consequences of Social Media on Adolescents and Families

Ask The Experts by Michael Dib

Q: My middle school child is part of that significant majority of adolescents who has a cell phone in her possession twenty four hours in a day. How do I regulate the use of that cell phone? 

A: Remember, you pay the monthly bill for that cell phone and you own it.

You should always know your child's password and social log in to access phone usage. Make it a priority to regularly check your child's use of online searches, text messaging, Facebook, Instagram, ...

Read more: The Consequences of Social Media on Adolescents and Families


Let's Talk Tech

Ask the Experts by Beth Walsh-Sahutske

Q: I feel like my teen is forever on a screen of some sort: phone, iPad, gaming. It's too much! Why don't kids just go out and play anymore?

A: That's an excellent question. Teenage years are a time when kids naturally crave that social time with friends as they begin to pull away from their parents and develop their own identity. The old story of our generation hanging out on the street until the streetlights came on just doesn't seem to hold true for this ...

Read more: Let's Talk Tech


4 Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep All night

Ask The Experts by Patty Werner

Q: I am an expectant mother with anxiety about sleeping issues once the baby arrives. What can I do to help my baby sleep well?"

A: "Whaaa! Whaaa! Whaaa!" It is the sound that wakes new parents out of a deep sleep! And for parents who are months into sleep deprivation, it is a dreaded sound! Squinting at the alarm clock, mustering up every bit of energy to go into their baby's room, they wonder in exhaustion, "When will this ever end?"

As a baby sleep expert, I ...

Read more: 4 Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep All night


Touched by Cancer - Now What?

Ask the Experts by Krista Bur

Q: Cancer has recently impacted my life. How do I begin to cope with this in a healthy way?

A: The first step to coping is to take a deep breath. The cancer diagnosis, treatment, and recovery process can be overwhelming.

Patients and caregivers are responsible for being knowledgeable about their situation. That means asking your medical team a lot of questions, including what your doctor would do in your shoes. Consider seeking a second opinion, no matter how much ...

Read more: Touched by Cancer - Now What?


A Call for Calm: Mindfulness Strategies for a Happy, Healthy Life

Ask The Experts by Megan Gunnell

Q: I am a busy working mom of 3 children under 10 years of age. I feel like I'm constantly coming and going, running from one thing to the next. When I'm at work, I'm thinking about home. When I'm home, I'm thinking about work. I feel distracted, on edge and forgetful lately. Are there simple strategies I could use to help me feel more relaxed, focused and at peace?

A: It would be easy to feel overwhelmed with so many busy aspects of your life right now. One ...

Read more: A Call for Calm: Mindfulness Strategies for a Happy, Healthy Life


Mindfulness in Schools: The Missing Piece of a Modern Education

Ask The Experts by Kristin Ervin and Hanna Reising

Q. What is mindfulness?

A. Mindfulness is the practice of developing non-judgmental awareness of the present moment and meeting that present moment experience with kindness and curiosity. Student definition: Paying attention, here and now, with kindness and curiosity, so that we can choose our behavior.

Q. Is mindfulness a religious practice?

A. No. Mindfulness is a natural human capacity of being aware (attention training) and doesn't subscribe ...

Read more: Mindfulness in Schools: The Missing Piece of a Modern Education


Mindfulness Can Fit Into Anyone's Lifestyle

Ask the Experts by Lori Warner, PhD

Q: I've heard about mindfulness, but I'm not into meditation. Last time I tried it, I just fell asleep. How can I be a mindful parent?

A: Many people think mindfulness and meditation are the same. Mindfulness is a broad concept that means having nonjudgmental awareness of what is happening around you.

Mindfulness can be an active, energetic process, or a quiet, thoughtful one, depending on what is happening. Some people find meditation is a helpful tool to ...

Read more: Mindfulness Can Fit Into Anyone's Lifestyle


About Mental Health First Aid Training Sessions

Ask the Experts by Jean Pfaendtner

Q: Can you tell me about the Mental Health First Aid training sessions that will be offered through The Family Center this fall  - who should attend and what can we expect if we do?

A: Just like First Aid and CPR training provide lay people with the skills to help someone experiencing a physical health crisis, Mental Health First Aid is a course, designed for lay people, to provide the skills needed to reach out to a person experiencing a mental health ...

Read more: About Mental Health First Aid Training Sessions


How Do We Know if We Need to Go to Probate?

Ask The Experts by Mike Kelly

Q: A loved one recently passed away and we are not sure how to handle the real estate left behind. How do we know if we need to go to probate?

A:  Often-times families are left with property due to a death of a loved one that is only transferrable through a Probate Court proceeding. Sometimes the family can access and use the property without going to probate.

This often occurs where other persons are part owners of the property but there is no right of survivorship ...

Read more: How Do We Know if We Need to Go to Probate?


Reaching In, Reaching Out During Times of Loss and Grief

Ask the Experts by Megan Gunnell, LMSW, MT-BC

As a therapist who specializes in grief and loss and an active member of this community, I felt compelled to contribute to the broken hearts of those impacted by the tragic accident that occurred on Lakeshore on Saturday, August 15, 2015.

Because our community is so uniquely small and closely connected, chances are when tragedy hits, we feel the effect of this deep sadness and pain as it ripples through the lives of friends and family who were touched ...

Read more: Reaching In, Reaching Out During Times of Loss and Grief


Grief and Loss Resources at

Articles by Ask the Experts professionals >

Video: "Understanding Loss, Grief and the Healing Process for Families" >

Association of Professionals members


My Mother's Medications are Overwhelming

Ask The Experts by Ghada Abdallah

Q: "My brother and I are sharing the responsibilities of taking care of our elderly mother. She is on so many meds it's hard for us to keep track of what she's taken and when, especially when neither of us are with her all the time. Is there a fool-proof system we could use to ensure we don't miss something?"

A: Yes! Blister packs or pill boxes would work. By simply compartmentalizing your medications, you will save time/hassle and track doses more effectively....

Read more: My Mother's Medications are Overwhelming


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