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May is for Mothers!

And what a fabulous month May is – the month of spring and new life is sprouting up all around us, a time when mama birds are having baby birds, the blossoms are coming on the trees, the tulips are pushing their way through and a new season is upon us. May could not be a better month for Mother’s Day, whomever planned it was genius. I’ll bet it was a mother!! This Mother’s Day will have special meaning for me, as we have just decided to put in a mother-in-law suite in our lower level and my mother will be coming to live with us. It will be a bit of a compromise for all involved. My husband must give up his “Man Cave” and I’m sure all will feel they must give up a bit of their own privacy. I’ve been doing a bit of research on parents moving in with their adult children and have found this is becoming a more common occurrence and I’m sure the economy has a lot to do with it. Naturally, these decisions aren't only made because of economics. Most of us have at least a little of the "we take care of our own" mentality. Our parents took care of us and now it's our turn to take care of them. I must tell the truth—I was a bit taken back with the whole idea in the beginning and it threw me into a spiral for a few days. I had a lot of soul searching and a bit of forgiving to do before I decided that not only was it the right thing to do, it was the only way I could help my aging mother. I know any of my children would do the same for me (right?? RIGHT?). Quite frankly, the more I think about it, the less worried I become and I understand it’s a life-changing step for my mother as well. So I’ve decided I’m going to make this May fabulous and fantastic and probably have the BIGGEST garage sale of all time. I will be designing and creating a whole new living space in my lower level and anyone that knows me knows I love to decorate (one of my favourite passions). May is for Mothers Continued... A recent AARP study shows the number of multi-generational households has jumped from 6.2 million to 7.1 million in the last two years -- a faster growth rate than the previous eight years combined. WOW! From all I have read, it’s all about pre-planning, clear boundaries and open communication to help preserve the harmony. The move can bring rewards as well as stresses. Besides saving money and keeping an aging loved one safe, in many families, a blended household forges closer bonds between the generations. Children will always remember Grandma baking cookies for them and attending school plays. If you are thinking about moving your aging mother in, the best advice is to be realistic. Moving a parent in with you changes the family dynamic and requires planning ahead and honest communication about ground rules and boundaries, says David Horgan, co-author of "When Your Parent Moves In". He also says that you can't treat an elder like a house guest, always putting on 'company manners'. At the same time, you've got to preserve the core family's unity while not making your parent feel useless or invisible. I’m sure we will have our ups and downs – but – mom is mom. Make sure you treat your own mother to the best Mother’s Day celebration ever. Happy Mother’s Day



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