I have not regaled you with any Carlton stories for awhile but the truth is that since we no longer have the day to day contact with him like when we were living in Ohio taking care of him the stories are few and far between. Add to the fact that our sweet Carlton is aging and showing the signs of aging and the stories are stories of a different type.
The stories now are more stories that are centered around his changing behavior. Our once outgoing and talkative Carlton is now far more reclusive and temperamental. My sister in law has such a wonderful way of dealing with him and takes all the little quirks and eccentricities into stride. When he gets his “panties in a bunch” as she calls it she has a way of dealing with him that is calming and effective. She explains that there are “big problems” and “little problems” and that this one is definitely a little one. I love her. She has made his life so wonderful and we are so grateful to her for sharing her life, her family and her house with our sweet Carlton.
It is difficult to watch someone age and it is no different with Carlton. His aging is accelerated and he is reluctant to do a lot of the things that he once loved to do. It is difficult to see that change get more intense every time we visit but it is part of his life now. He still sneaks cookies. He still leaves notes all over the place. He still craves praise on how great he looks. Even though some of the parts of his personality are changing as he ages he is still that same Carlton Scott that we love.
Today when I was thinking about him I remembered a story that I posted a few years ago that was true Carlton. You might remember it but if not —enjoy.
Nutrition is important to everyone and I took it upon myself to help my brother in law eat a bit better. Years of fast food had invaded his life by necessity and his life revolved around mozzarella sticks, chicken tenders, french fries and lemonade. When we went out to eat no matter how massive the menu that was the choice. I discovered that if I put some of my food on his plate he would eat anything that I chose to share so it wasn’t that he did not like other foods—it was just his routine to order the same things.
When I moved in to help out I decided that his health was one of the most important things that I could focus on so I proceeded to cook healthy meals and offer alternatives to the junk food that he had become accustomed to eating. There was resistance—I can not say that he always raved about the vegetables but I usually was able to get him to at least take 2 green beans. I tried to prepare things that I knew he would like. Chicken was always a winner, of course, and I had to throw in the occasional hot dog wrapped in a crescent roll to make him appreciate the other stuff I cooked. We talked about eating right and I even put the food pyramid up on the refrigerator so he could be reminded of healthy choices.
We also had our weekly Wednesday night date night where we would go out to dinner–his pick—and then to the grocery store. I usually did the household shopping earlier in the week and this trip was to just get “his” stuff. I could memorize the list. Summer sausage, potato salad, Diet root beer, Oreos, toilet paper (whether we needed it or not), and orange juice or lemonade. One week I had made cookies during the week and so we had cookies at home. Carlton proceeded to put 2 packages of mint Oreos into the cart and I questioned whether he really needed those or not since I had already made cookies. He looked at me and said “you’re right.” He put them back but then his eyes darted to another shelf close by and he quickly put a package of peanut butter Oreos in the cart. I just looked at him and and he responded “well–these have protein and protein is good for me.” The cookies stayed in the cart. I could not argue with that logic
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I love your Wednesday night date with Carlton. What a special gift to you both.
We did have some great Wednesday nights!!!
This made me smile! Just proof that God puts blessings in ALL situations if we just look for them! As a caregiver to someone going through those “aging issues”, I can certainly relate. On our not so good days, I try to stop and take it all in, knowing that someday I will wish I even had those days back. I’ll be keeping Carlton and the family in prayer.
Aging is not for sissies, that is for sure. Whew. You have such a good attitude about how to handle things—it is definitely a challenge to live with someone who has some of the things associated with aging. Thanks for stopping by and it was great to see you!!!
Aww that is a sweet story. Made me smile and giggle out loud. Blessings! He has brought so much joy to you all in the most innocent ways. Very Sweet <3
He has definitely brought a lot of fun to our lives and a lot of “Carlisms”. I giggle every time I think about his protein comment.
Sweet story Beth Ann. God gives us blessings in all sizes…some to make us happy while others build patience, love and strength in us. My father had dementia and I can still see him wrinkle his nose and smile when we passed the ice cream isle…..his favorite. While we may have had plenty at home he couldn’t go home without getting more! I so miss him but know he’s enjoying his ice cream in heaven….great post.
Carlton is definitely a blessing! Your dad sounds like my kind of guy—-ice cream is definitely a great thing that you can never have too much of!
As a “new” reader, I’m not familiar with your Carlton stories, so I enjoyed this one a lot. Your sis-in-law seems to have risen to the occasion and is just the right person to care for him. I imagine it must be hard at times — good for both of you, getting him to branch out with his food choices!
Thanks, Debbie! He has come a long way since when we stayed with him after their father’s death. He is a character and always has some witty or insightful thing to add and I miss having him around. We have had him stay with us a couple weeks each summer but this summer it was going going to be just too difficult on him to do it so I guess I was kind of missing him when I wrote this.
Your sister-in-law sounds like a true GEM. Carlton – and your family – are lucky to have her. Just as Debbie commented, I, too, am a new reader and not familiar with Carlton. I wish the best for him and your sister-in-law.
She is a very special lady and we are so blessed that she and her husband are able to provide such a wonderful home for him. We could never ever repay her for all that she has done for him. Carlton has Down Syndrome and we went and lived with him for about 8 months when Chris’s dad died and we have lots of fun Carlton stories. 🙂
Ah, a gem of two stories that illustrate your family’s deep love for Carlton.
He is such a great guy and it is hard to see him getting older but we know that he is where he is being loved and well cared for. Colleen is the absolute best sister ever.
Beth, this is a nice story.
Thanks, Rhonda. Carlton is a pretty special guy!
Your sister-in-law has set the Carlton bar high from the stories you’ve share, but it seems everyone has contributed to keeping it there and isn’t that grand for both Carlton and the rest of you. I feel even closer to Carlton knowing that he stayed loyal to his Oreos and used solid logic to keep them in the cart. You can never have to many cookies or packages of Oreos in the house,,,just in case, doncha know. Getting old isn’t for sissies. . . :-/
Getting old is definitely not for the faint of heart. Colleen takes such good care of him and always puts him first in everything that they do. He has a wonderful life and usually all the oreos that he can eat. I was the meanie when it came to that. 🙂
A clever guy! Can I ask what he has?
He has Down Syndrome. I have written a lot of posts in the past about the neat guy that he is and was just thinking that I hadn’t really posted much lately because we don’t’ see him that much. He is a character to say the least.
Oh okay I haven’t seen any of the posts about him. People with Downs are the sweetest soles. 🙂
He is a wonderful part of our family. Can’t imagine life without him.
Such a treasure. 🙂
He really is. And very witty at times. 🙂
I believe it!
I was sad when you told of Carltons health problems. His sister is so special to love him so much and take such good care of him.
Thanks, Mother, Yes, Colleen is so very good to him as well as Bryan and Meredith. He has a real family and a wonderful home.
LOL – I definitely like the way he thinks! He’s not wrong really. 🙂
Thanks for sharing an update with us — it’s good to hear how he is doing.
Thanks, Les! He isn’t wrong about much. And he is ingenious when it comes with getting what he wants! 🙂
My Kelvin hates green beans & yellow beans. I have managed to get him to eat green beans if they are served in a stir fry though, so at least he gets some into him. My sister had to do some real fancy cooking when she was married – her husband refused to eat any vegetables. So she would make green beans casserole with mushroom soup & onion rings or other dishes to disguise the taste of the veggies. She wanted to make sure her sons were getting some good food into them without following their father’s bad example. I used to make a turnip/apple casserole when we would get together for family meals. It was the only veggie dish of which I ever saw my ex-brother-in-law take seconds. It was made with Golden Delicious apples, cinnamon, brown sugar & butter. It was lovely.
Hmmm…..that sounds like an intriguing dish. My family has always loved vegetables so I am lucky with that. I guess you do what you have to do to get them eat healthy stuff,right?
Sweet post, Beth Ann.
Thank you. Things are really progressing quickly with his Alzheimer’s so he is on my mind a lot.
I’m sorry. I didn’t realize he had Alzheimer’s. Poor guy. He didn’t catch any breaks did he?
No—it sucks. Big time. For some reason this went to my spam folder and I just found it. I am actually with him now—they needed someone to come stay with him since the sitter they had been using got a job so I am here in Ohio for a bit to help out. 🙂
Peace and grace. You are a good person. Wishing the best for all of you.