June 2010 IssueVol 1, Issue 12


I Did Not Know 

What To Say  



WELCOME EVERYONE!  Our online community is growing and we are honored to have you be a part of the journey.


We are deeply grateful to Beliefnet.com for publishing our EBook 21 Ways to Help a Grieving Friend (see details below). We invite you to share the link with your family and friends - How to Support Someone Who Has Lost a Loved One - 21 Ways to Help a Grieving Friend- Beliefnet.com. Let us know if you have any ideas to add to the list. We are working on 101 Ways to Help a Grieving Friend and would love to hear your suggestions.

As we approach Father's Day this weekend, I am pleased to share with you an article by Laurie Mueller that will explore ways you and your family can celebrate Father's Day when your father has passed away. Laurie Mueller offers practical tips to honor the important men in your life. 

I would like to wish my father a very Happy Father's Day. And, to all the men that are making a difference in the lives of their loved ones, we wish you a very Happy Father's Day as well.

Each month our newsletter will feature a new article giving you a different perspective on how to assist your friends and family through the grieving process. Please feel free to pass our newsletter on to anyone that may benefit from our articles and inspirational messages.
Have a suggestion or a story you would like to share? We would love to hear from you.

With Love & Gratitude,

Dad, your guiding hand on my shoulder will remain with me forever.  ~Author Unknown

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Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts
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Featured Article of the Month
What to Do on Father's Day When Dad is Deceased
"We can't celebrate Father's Day anymore, our Dad has died." This is such an incorrect statement that I need to tell you about all the exciting prospects that you can partake in on this day - whether or not you have a living father!
Create your own celebration that will be special for the child. Ignoring the day allows for the child to realize something is missing in their life. As the only parent, create an experience that says "We rock - just the way we are!" Create an event or a ritual that can be repeated from year to year that celebrates what you currently have.
I am a child who lost her father at the age of 7. I grew up not celebrating Father's Day. However my mother put in place events that allowed me to feel normal and to appreciate life. When my dad died just before Halloween, my mother made sure that I still celebrated Halloween in the way that we did every year in our neighborhood. The young woman across the street (who also babysat me) was hired to take me out in my wonderful elaborate costume that my mother forced herself to make even in the shock of my father's sudden massive heart attack. I still remember that Halloween for being a good time - and its 50 years later!
It is important to create traditions that are meaningful and appropriate for your family. Look for positives and things that are working out right in your lives and in the family and focus on them on this day. If it is hard for you to do this because of a tragedy, keep your mind on the impact you can have on your child by modeling a positive attitude and an understanding of how things can be good.
As someone who helps people with funeral plans, I have spent a lot of time with people who are mourning and with them in their lives afterwards. My own experiences as well as theirs have given me insight into what can help a person be more than just a survivor. These experiences have helped me to see how people can grow and thrive and enjoy their lives to the fullest with rich tradition and healthy attitudes and activities.
If dad has died, you might want to have a special celebration to remember him. Some people wear a white rose for their deceased father on the day. If he is buried in a cemetery or has a place that memorializes him, the family could visit and take flowers. Making his favorite meal and sharing it is another way to remember his memory. The children could also:
·         Write a letter to dad
·         Create a garden stepping stone with his name on it
·         Eat his favorite meal
·         Do something that he loved to do on that day: go to a ball game, build a birdhouse, eat hot dogs in the park, go for a bike ride, etc.
Father's day is about honoring the men in your life that have contributed to your growth, education, happiness and well-being. It does not have to be just about a biological father. Have a dinner for people that have made a difference in your child's life: have your child/children make dessert, place cards and any other aspects that they enjoy doing.
If dinner doesn't work for the guest of honor, have a lunch, afternoon BBQ or create a card and deliver it. The card can include a thank you for the things that the child has appreciated from this person throughout the year. One child I know wrote a card and in it drew a Ferris wheel and said "thanks for taking me to the fair".
On Father's Day, do something special with the child such as:
·         Create a special meal together to celebrate family
·         Play a game together
·         Go for a trip by car, bus or roller blade! Take a walk through a special area of your city or country
·         Eat ice cream
·         Build a thankfulness garden. Plant lettuce, marigolds, tomatoes, peas
·         Make a poster for the fridge that shows the family as it is and says "We rock!"
·         Have a special meal that each person contributes to just as each person contributes to the family
·         If there is a grandfather, uncle or special friend, invite them to participate
·         Make cards for each other in the family. Tell each other what is special about them. (One family I know created this tradition several years ago. The children keep a list of things that they will include in the card for each year)
·         Make a card for the mother that does both father and mother duties
·         Encourage your child to understand that when there is only one parent, the other parent and family members pick up the roles and then celebrate this fact
·         Don't be afraid to have balloons, hot dogs, ice cream and even goody bags.
May you have a positive and meaningful Father's Day with your family or close friends surrounding you.
Laurie Mueller, RTC, ID, AED, MEd is a counselor, life coach and adult educator. She has operated her own private practice for 28 years. She has written e-books that help people manage the funeral and the tasks that they must do at that traumatic time in their life when someone they love dies. [http://www.easyfuneralspeeches.com]
This Month's Inspiration - 21 Ways to Help a Grieving Friend
I am very honored that Beliefnet.com has featured my EBook 21 Ways to Help a Grieving Friend on their website. This piece was born out of my gratitude for my friends and family that were there to support me at time of great loss. Thank you Laurie Sue Brockway, Inspiration Editor at Beliefnet.com, for all of your support.
How to Support Someone Who Has Lost a Loved One -
21 Ways to Help a Grieving Friend- Beliefnet.com
Losing a loved one can be an extremely difficult time in a person's life. These 21 tips are meant to help you find supportive ways to assist someone you care about through the journey of restoring balance in their life after a loss. Written by Lori A. Pederson of IDidNotKnowWhatToSay.com.
Discussion Topics
We invite you to join our on-going discussions on our Facebook page.  Not on Facebook?  We have also posted our discussion topics on our Blog.  Current topics include: 
Thoughtful Sympathy Gift Ideas
good grief care packageVisit our Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts page for sympathy gifts ideas for your loved ones. 
We hope the thoughtful gifts listed on our website inspire you to give warmth and joy to your friends and family in their time of need.
Visit our website for special discounts from our Thoughtful Sympathy Gift vendors.
Viritual Interviews 
Posted on November 8, 2009 - Author, Jean Reagan - Always My Brother 
Posted on December 1, 2009 - Author, Marcy Kelly - From Sorrow to Dancing
If you are an author or an expert in the grief recovery field and would like to be interviewed, please contact us at info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

To order these books and preview other inspirational books, be sure to visit our Helpful Books page.
About I Did Not Know What To Say.com & Lori Pederson
LoriLori Pederson created I Did Not Know What To Say in April 2009 as a platform to inspire and provide resources to people that wanted to help their friends and family through the grieving process. 
Lori's expertise comes from those experiences that only life can provide.  Over the past twenty years, Lori has lost many family members, including her mother to ovarian cancer, as well as many friends, colleagues and pets.  She is no stranger to loss and the grieving process.
Throughout her life she has been blessed with many friends and relatives that were there for her as she experienced these great losses. She understands that although people want to help, they often don't know where to start.  I Did Not Know What To Say.com was created out of Lori's desire to assist people find the words when they don't know what to say or do.
You can learn more about Lori and her organization by visiting www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com, reading her personal Blog or contacting her at:
Lori Pederson
Each week we will be adding new inspirational stories and resources to our website and Blog.   Help us reach our goal of providing inspiration and insight to the world by sharing your story or resource with our online community.  We would love to hear from you! 
Please email us your inspirational stories, letters/cards that have reached your heart, a favorite quote, an unforgettable adventure, a thoughtful gift idea, a book that touched your life, or a suggestion for our website or newsletter to info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.
If you are an author or expert in the field of grief recovery, we would love to interview you for our Blog and/or one of our upcoming newsletters.

If you have a website, Blog or newsletter, we ask that you consider including our information on your site.  Here is the link:
I Did Not Know What To Say
IDidNotKnowWhatToSay.com is a website designed to inspire and provide you with tools to assist a love one through the grieving process.
With Love & Gratitude, 
Founder, I Did Not Know What To Say
Copyright 2010' I Didn't Know What To Say(TM) Newsletter.  All Rights Reserved.