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2013.7.16 painting


Greet Everyone with a Smile and a Compliment

It seems obvious, of course, but it didn’t come naturally to our Scottish-Presbyterian-German household.  Maybe you have to lose your consciousness of self to put it into practice.

In her last years, Mom greeted everyone with a smile—genuine and infectious.  Throughout the day she offered a cheery greeting to the nurses and staff of Sup

Those smocks all the caregivers wear?  I wouldn’t exactly call them pretty but Mom did.   “What lovely outfits,” she told them.

And in return, everyone loved her.   Who wouldn’t?

I try to emulate Mom and it turns out everything and everyone is much nicer when you start with a smile and something positive to say.  Who knew?

By the way, Mom may have excelled at giving compliments but was still terrible at receiving them.   Tell her she was beautiful and she would immediately make a hideous face to show you how wrong you were.

Old habits die hard.

Though sometimes she forgot even this.  Once we were walking out of her apartment to find the hallway empty.  Mom turned to me with a gleam in her eye and said, “You know what this means?  We’re the most beautiful women in sight.”

In the old days I would have said, “Well, at least you are.”   This time I just smiled.


And click on her painting to Give Big to The Art of Alzheimer’s.  This is the Seattle Foundation’s annual online giving event, raising money for the hardworking nonprofits who are making the Northwest a better place to live for everyone.  And this year we are not only involved but a hugely generous matching gift will match every dollar up to $2500!

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