What People Say about SIMPLE PLEASURES Books

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“I am so touched by your SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books and your genuine enthusiasm in helping people cope with Alzheimer’s disease and other memory loss illnesses. What a creative way for individuals to keep their memories active. Alzheimer’s disease too often divides families and isolates loved ones from one another. It is individuals like you and the resources that you have created that can bridge the gap and empower us to enjoy the life, love and laughter of our family. Again, I appreciate your wonderful books . . . your dedication to this devastating illness is inspirational.”
Maria Shriver

First Lady of the State of California, Alzheimer’s Research Advocate

“Dan Koffman’s SIMPLE PLEASURES© book series is a wonderful resource for eliciting memories and conversation with individuals who have cognitive challenges. The pictures of familiar objects and foods are thoughtfully selected and beautifully illustrated. The books may also be used to introduce activities and entice reluctant participants to join in. For example, the HAND TOOLS book may stimulate a conversation about a simple building project which can then be carried out. The illustrations in the FRUITS book are so appetizing that you can almost smell the sliced oranges—a wonderful opportunity to encourage reluctant eaters. I look forward to future issues—from gardening to chocolate to the great outdoors, there is something for everyone.”
Rebecca G. Logsdon, PhD, Research Professor, University of Washington, School of Nursing, Northwest Research Group on Aging

“The pictures in the SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books are beautiful and I can just imagine folks trying to lift the items right off the page to eat them or use them. I think these books will be very engaging for seniors with dementia and should be a great help for activities directors who are trying to find appropriate materials for their programs.”
Dr. Michelle Bourgeois, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, Professor of Speech & Hearing Science, Ohio State University, and recipient of the prestigious 2007 Barry Reisberg Award for Non-Pharmacologic Research, Theory, and Clinical Practice for her “Memory Books and Other Graphic Cuing Systems”

“The high quality of the photographs in SIMPLE PLEASURES© books, and the relevance of the items selected to the lives of persons with dementia, makes these materials a natural for eliciting engagement. These should be especially relevant for working with those challenging residents, family members and clients who have difficulty communicating due to more advanced dementia.”
Cameron J. Camp, Ph.D., Cognitive Psychologist, Research Scientist
Author of “Activities for Persons with Dementia” and other titles

“As a Family Practice Doctor, one of my focuses is on geriatric care. In my role as medical director at an inter-generational care community, I routinely work with seniors with moderate to severe memory loss. I find that the images and subjects of the SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books create an easy opportunity for engagement and communication with these patients. Additionally, we have a hardcover set of SIMPLE PLEASURES© books in our waiting room to be used by patients.”
Dr. Corrine L. Bresko, MD – Family Practitioner, Stanwood, WA

“Our Activity Assistants are enjoying using the SIMPLE PLEASURES© books with our residents who have memory loss. The books are easy for us to reach for and utilize as an engaging activity for our residents on a daily basis. The responses that we are seeing are often uplifting, surprising and gratifying . . . we can feel the connection. It’s great to have a drug-free visual therapy easily available such as the SIMPLE PLEASURES© books that have only positive side effects. The books and the images are dignified, colorful and powerful . . . and they are fun, too! We look forward to expanding the library of SIMPLE PLEASURES© titles so as to connect with even more facets of life experience of our residents. SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books are “simply wonderful!”
Diana Koob, Activity Director at Josephine, an Intergenerational Care Community, Stanwood, WA

“Many of our clients suffer from Alzheimer’s and related dementia. It is not unusual that they become behaviorally agitated and confused. Our Personal Attendants are trained in techniques that can calm and diffuse these behaviors. When appropriate, the SIMPLE PLEASURES© books can easily engage a person’s interest, redirecting their focus and reducing the anxiety and confusion. This is an ideal outcome and can lighten an otherwise difficult moment for all involved. The broad appeal of the series makes it easy to find an image that is just right!”
John O’Brien, President, Central Coast Senior Services, Inc., Pacific Grove, CA

“Response by residents with varying degrees of dementia to the images in the SIMPLE PLEASURES© book continue to be 100% . . . ranging from wide eyes, smiles and ooo’s and ahhh’s to expressing personal likes and even the sharing of good memories. Even those with severe dementia smile and laugh. SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© is, believe it or not, a drug free, self-contained, easy to use, anytime activity that really works for our residents with mid-level to more advanced dementias. SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© is a touch of simplicity for solid heart-mind connection!”
David Johnson, Personal Pathways, Garden House, Merrill Gardens at Stanwood, WA

“We are utilizing the wonderful SIMPLE PLEASURES© books in the Garden House, our Alzheimer’s Care Facility, on a daily basis. We continuously get great reliable results when we use these beautiful, fun and engaging books as a daily activity for our residents who suffer from moderate to severe memory loss. Their ease of use is especially appreciated by our busy staff!”
Tamara Gordon, General Manager, Garden House, Merrill Gardens at Cordata, Bellingham, WA

“SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books are a new and enlightening way to connect with loved ones who suffer from Alzheimer’s and dementia diseases. These easy to use books may also be a useful tool for individuals who suffer from memory loss as the result of an injury or other memory related illnesses. The SIMPLE PLEASURES© book series offers an opportunity to spark reflections and reminiscences, thus improving the quality of life to both residents and their families.”
Barb Paterson, Administrator, Eagle Ridge Assisted Living, Ferndale, WA

“As a pharmacist, reviewing the SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books for people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia was of personal and professional interest. I keep a set of the hardcover books in my office and from time to time loan them out to caregivers for at home use. Dan Koffman has shared the idea of an abridged booklet version that we could give away to customers picking up pharmaceuticals that are specific to memory loss. I wholeheartedly endorse this idea, especially if new titles are periodically made available.”
Mark Phibbs, P.C., pharmacist and owner, Mark’s Camano Island Pharmacy, Camano Island, WA

“I work in a nursing home in the Special Care Unit in Allentown, PA. The 14 residents we have at present are in the moderate-to-severe stage of Alzheimer’s. While we do have daily learning and social activities,  I decided to go on-line to see what else was available. I looked at children’s and baby learning books, but nothing I saw was appropriate. When I found your SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© website, I was delighted and placed an order immediately. I think this is a great way to communicate with people in the later stages of this disease. Thanks for making these valuable resources available!”
Susan Bayer, Lehigh Valley Health Network, Department of Family Medicine, Allentown, PA

“I used the SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books in a small dementia group and really think that they are very good tools. This was a low–functioning group and every person participated at some level. The SIMPLE PLEASURES© pictures are so very realistic and I think that is what made it so successful. And, of course, the pictures reminded people of times they enjoyed the foods, etc., etc. . . so we heard good stories. I was very, very pleased with the activity.”
Mary Lynn Palmer, RN, St Joseph Hospital Adult Day Health Program, Bellingham, WA

“Dan Koffman’s innovative book series, SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS©, beautifully illustrates universal objects and experiences that cut through the haze of short-term memory loss and Alzheimer’s Disease. One of my many favorites, FRUITS, taps into long-ago memories of tree picking, pie making and yummy sweet desserts. By coaxing up deep reflections, such as holding a fresh red apple and recalling how delicious that first crunchy and juicy bite is, pleasant thoughts create new opportunities for connection. With (soon to be) over 24 engaging titles, from FUN FOODS to HAND TOOLS, family caregivers select those that best resonate with their loved one—and care facilities should have the entire (expanding) series available for their residents, as they generate smiles not only from Special Seniors, but also from their grateful families.”
Jacqueline Marcell

Author of: “Elder Rage”, international speaker, host of “Coping with Caregiving” radio show

“SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© Books . . . I think you really have something here! I especially like how there is only one thing on each page and it looks so real. People with dementia only know what “they see right now” so, the only better thing would be to put that item into their hands. Seeing these familiar items will surely evoke memories or simply a twinkle in their eye. Joys to you . . . your warm heart is felt in many ways by what I see.”
Jolene Brackey
Author of: “Creating Moments of Joy for the Person with Alzheimer’s or Dementia” book series

“Dan Koffman’s book, FRUITS, provided a key to the door of memories for my mother. We shared the book and mom smiled and laughed while recalling summers so long ago and memories of fun with friends and family as she looked at the pictures of the strawberries and watermelon. FRUITS, like the other books in your series, allows family and caregivers to rebuild connections today based on awakening recollections from years ago. After about 30 minutes of exploring FRUITS and stimulating mom’s recall, she closed the book, and said, “That was nice. Can we do more later?” As a family member and caregiver, hearing those words from someone with memory loss was truly music to my ears. Thanks for a beautiful book and a bridge to stimulating more conversations with my mom.”
Ron Kauffman, CSA
Author of: “Caring for a Loved One with Alzheimer’s Disease”

“As a designer, I was amazed at the bold simplicity of the SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© books. My mother is in the mid-late stages of dementia and I shared your books with her and was surprised and pleased by her engaged facial expressions and response. Well done!”
Ethel Kessler, Kessler Design Group, Bethesda, MD
Designer of the 2008 Alzheimer’s Disease Postage Stamp
Latest addition to the US Postal Service Social Awareness Stamp Serie

Alzheimer's Stamp by Ethel Kessler

Alzheimer's Stamp by Ethel Kessler

“I sit with mom with the SIMPLE PLEASURES© picture books in hand. Mom enjoys holding the books and I turn the pages. The FRUITS continually bring a smile, especially the apple. I remind her that she always ate “all” of the apple – seeds and all! She smiles.
With the FUN FOODS book she shows a keen interest in the Hamburger image. She opens her mouth like I was handing her the burger to eat!
I leave the books in her dresser drawer – well-labeled, of course – for other family members to use when they visit.
I plan on visiting Mom tomorrow and going over the books with her again. I’ll keep you posted! I think the SIMPLE PLEASURES© books are such a great idea . . . they continue to give us something to converse about . . . and for both of us to have a smile.”
Marilyn about her mother Mary, 84 years old with high level of dementia

“SIMPLE PLEASURES FOR SPECIAL SENIORS© was an unexpected pleasure. Mom has dementia as well as being limited to non-existent speech. I opened the FRUITS book, showing my mother the apple. Her eyes flew open wide and a big smile came across her face along with an “ooh”. She was just delighted – and so was I to see her reaction. We continued through the book and I continued to enjoy her positive response. What a joy for both her and me. Thanks for making some of our moments together a little brighter for both of us.”
Susan about her mother Florence, 88 years old with high level of dementia