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Welcome to our blog. Here we will share useful information with you on topics ranging from funeral planning and cremation to positive living and grief support.

Educating our community is only half of our job. The other half is listening. We take pride in our exemplary and caring service and do our best to be available to you for all of your questions. If you have a question or a blog topic that you would like to suggest, feel free to get in touch. Your ideas and thoughts are incredibly valuable to us.

You can find our latest posts on this page. Click on the calendar to review postings from prior periods and remember to check back here often!

Too little too late - a memorial gone wrong

Published: January 17, 2020

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Yesterday, Jane was on duty as a tour guide at a lovely little pre-revolutionary war church in rural Virginia. It was late in the afternoon when a youngish woman wearing shorts and a Cubs ball hat stepped into the visitor’s center looking lost. Thinking that she might need directions, Jane quietly approached to offer her assistance. The seemingly lost young lady said she just wanted to go in the church.  

Since visitors were not allowed in the church without a docent, Jane began to accompany her guest to her destination. Striking up a conversation, Jane quickly discovered there was a story behind the sad eyes of her visitor. She revealed her name was Stella and she was here from Chicago. The pair talked a bit and Jane started to tell her about the church. As they walked and talked, Jane casually asked, “What brings you to this part of Virginia?”  Stella spoke in a soft tone revealing she was here for a “sort of” memorial service for her mother. The pain was obvious on her face with her lips quivering and eyes glistening with small pools of tears.   

They walked into the church and sat in one of the high back pews carved from pine when George Washington was just three years old. The sun was shining through the wavy glass windows. Jane took Stella’s hands and asked her, “Would you like to tell me a little bit about your mother?” The floodgates opened. She talked for an hour. She told the story that was her Mom.   

Stella was the single daughter. She had been the caregiver for her mother who died ten months ago. Her brother lived abroad and her sister and her family traveled frequently. Because it was hard to get them together, they all decided to forgo a funeral service and ship Mom’s cremated remains to Virginia for burial. It seemed, at the time, to make more sense to get together later.   

They agreed on June for the get together since that’s when their family typically came to visit mom and dad in this part of Virginia. They all stayed at a local inn and had dinner at their parent’s favorite restaurant. It was nice, but something was missing. There was no service. No words were spoken for Stella’s mother. It wasn’t enough for her. It was too little and too late.

It was obvious to Jane that Stella was distraught. There had been no closure. Jane’s heart broke for her. Still, she couldn’t help but wonder why. Why was there no service? Even something small, private and simple would have been better than nothing.

Jane knew some people had a fear of planning a service. They don’t know how to or what to plan. They are at a loss. They should have they called the local funeral home for help. The funeral director could have helped them find someone to pull together a brief ceremony at the graveside or in the chapel. There could have even been a service in the lovely little church where Stella sat and cried with a stranger.

 

www.caminodelsol.com

Cheap cremation

Published: January 10, 2020

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How cheap is cheap cremation? How do they do it so cheap? How is cheap cremation different from the cremation services provided by your local funeral home? 

The least expensive form of cremation is direct cremation. Direct cremation means that the body is picked up from the place of death and taken directly to the cremation facility.  Cremated remains are returned to the family in a simple container.

Direct cremation takes care of the body but does nothing for the family left behind.

All funeral homes offer the option of a direct cremation. So, what is missing? Service. There is no help with a memorial service, gathering or celebration of the life.  Most families need more assistance. They need and want to come together and remember. However, in most circumstances, families need help putting together a memorial service after losing a beloved family member. Family members are stunned after a sudden loss and exhausted when death follows a long illness. They appreciate help.

Cremation societies may advertise very low-cost cremations. Very low cost usually means low staff levels, unskilled labor, people who have not been trained to serve families and no service.  When you sign up ask who will pick up the deceased. Ask if more than one body is transported to the cremation facility at a time. Ask how you can be sure the cremated remains you will pick up will be those of your family member. Compare the cost of the cremation society cremation to the direct cremation cost at your funeral home.

Finally, consider your family situation.  Do all your family members live in town? Do you have children away at college? Won’t that child want to have a final good-bye with her grandmother before nana is cremated? The funeral home usually can make that good-bye happen.

Your local funeral home offers more options and more service than a cremation society. Saving money may be important but cheap just might not be what your family needs.

What to look for when you are buying final expense insurance

Published: January 3, 2020

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Cost is important, but it’s not the whole story. Take a look at the premium, the amount you will pay each month, how long will you pay that amount? It is not uncommon to pay until you are 100 or even older. Will you be able to pay that amount each month as you age? What if you live to be 100? Will the benefit stay in place? How much will you have paid in by that time? It’s not unheard of for people to end up paying more than they will receive in death benefits.   

Look at the coverage. How much will be paid on your death? Most policies are for a fixed amount your family will receive when you die. This is the death benefit. How soon will you be covered for the full amount? Sometimes you will need to make payments for as long as two years before you would be eligible for the full death benefit. Often the death benefit stays the same over the course of your lifetime. So, as you age and the price of funerals increases, your policy is at risk of falling short and not providing your family with enough to cover the cost of your funeral.   

Before you sign anything, call your local funeral home. Ask for an appointment with the funeral professional who takes care of advance funeral planning. When you meet with this individual be straight forward. Share your financial situation. See what the funeral home has to offer.   

Most of the time the funeral home’s funding program is a little more per month but you make payments for a much shorter period of time. So, you pay much less in the long run. If you are in good health you will most likely be covered as soon as the policy is issued. Some funeral homes even offer a cost guarantee which means you have no worries about the rising cost of funerals.  

It’s always worth the extra time to be sure you are getting the best final expense coverage you can afford. The one that will really be there for your family when it’s needed.

Happy New Year 2020

Published: January 1, 2020

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Wow, it’s hard to believe we are twenty years into the new millennium. Twenty years ago, as we moved from 1999 to 2000 people were stock piling all manner of survival goods. There was widespread panic over what would happen as the clock ticked down to the new year. It was called the Y2k glitch. We worried. Would computers fail to read the 00 correctly? Would the entire power grid shut down?

As midnight approached, we all wondered and watched. Thankfully the lights stayed on and life continued to move forward. Leading up to the year 2000, books were written that predicted we would be obsessed with home security, we would have watches that provided health information, and we would watch movies at home instead of going to the theatre. It all seemed far-fetched then, but now in 2020 it’s our reality.

So, what about this year? This gift of a new year. What will it bring? For sure there will be challenges and triumphs, sadness and happiness, and opportunities. We will take some of those opportunities and act on them and let others go. It’s all about choice.

Will you sit in the chair and watch TV or will you go for a walk and smell the roses? Will you eat the carrot or the chips? Will you speak to the person at the grocery checkout or ignore them? Will you vote or stay home and complain? Will you help or hinder? Will you smile or frown? Will you be kind or be a bully? So many choices.

Every choice we make has the power to change our lives. We make our year.

“Your life changes the moment you make a new, congruent, and committed decision.” —Tony Robbins

September 10, 2018 | 0 Comments | Category: Honoring

15 POEMS AND QUOTES TO HONOR GRANDPARENTS THIS GRANDPARENTS DAY

Compiled by Jenny Goldade

With Grandparents Day approaching this coming Sunday, we wanted to share some inspirational poems and quotes to honor grandparents.

These touching sayings can help us grieve and honor grandparents who are no longer physically with us, but forever in our hearts.

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GRANDPARENTS — UNKNOWN

Grandparents bestow upon

their grandchildren

The strength and wisdom that time

And experience have given them.

Grandchildren bless their Grandparents

With a youthful vitality and innocence

That help them stay young at heart forever.

Together they create a chain of love

Linking the past with the future

The chain may lengthen,

But it will never part…


WE HAD A WONDERFUL GRANDFATHER — UNKNOWN

We had a wonderful grandfather,

One who never really grew old;

His smile was made of sunshine,

And his heart was solid gold;

His eyes were as bright as shining stars,

And in his cheeks fair roses you see.

We had a wonderful grandfather,

And that’s the way it will always be,

But take heed, because

He’s still keeping an eye on all of us,

So let’s make sure

He will like what he sees


OUR GRANDDAD — UNKNOWN

It broke our hearts to lose you,

But you never went alone,

For a part of us went with you,

The day god took you home.

A million times we missed you,

A million times we cried,

If love could have saved you,

You never would have died.

To the grave you travel,

Our flowers placed with care,

No-one knows the heartache,

as we turn to leave you there.

Read the rest of the poem here.

MY LOVING GRANDMOTHER — NIVEDEETA PEREIRA

When I had no shoulder to lean on,

And my eyes were filled with tears.

I had my Nana to count on,

to drive away my fears.

Despite all the wrong I’d done,

When the light I couldn’t see,

Nana was my shining sun,

who gently consoled me.

She always encouraged and inspired me,

to follow my every dream,

she’d tell me that I was not alone,

cause she was my team. 

Read the rest of the poem here.


God Saw You Getting Tired — Unknown

God saw you getting tired

and a cure was not to be

so he put his arms around you

and whispered,


Come to Me.

With tearful eyes we watch you

and saw you pass away

and although we loved you dearly

we could not make you stay.

A Golden heart stopped beating

hard working hands at rest.

God broke our hearts to prove us

he only takes the best.

Inspirational Quotes

We gathered a collection of quotes to honor grandparents and remember the love they gave:

“Grandparents are a delightful blend of laughter, caring deeds, wonderful stories, and love.” — Unknown

“Between the earth and the sky above, nothing can match a grandmother’s love.” — Unknown

“Grandparents hold our tiny hands for just a little while, but our hearts forever.” — Unknown 

“Sometimes our grandmas and grandpas are like grand-angels.” — Lexie Saige

“Grandparents make the world a little softer, a little kinder, a little warmer.” — Unknown 

“There’s nothing more wonderful than the love and guidance a grandparent can give his or her grandchild.” — Edward Fays 

“My grandmother once said that grief is the price we pay for love.” ­— Prince William

“Some of the world’s best educators are grandparents.” — Charles W. Shedd

“A garden of love grows in a grandmother’s heart.” — Unknown

“A grandfather is someone with silver in his hair and gold in his heart.” — Unknown

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