Two-Lap Books® have provided a truly enjoyable way to spend time with loved ones who are experiencing memory loss. This beautiful anniversary edition of The Sunshine on My Face presents the pictures and stories that readers have come to love while introducing new content to make interactions with loved ones even more meaningful.
Just sit down together, open this colorful and engaging book across both laps, and begin reading, talking, singing, joking, and reminiscing. You can use this versatile book in many ways—turn to favorite pages, sing songs to match the themes, or simply read together from beginning to end. Tips on how to promote engagement with the book are provided, as well as song suggestions for each illustration.
In this innovative book, colorful illustrations accompany short, easy-to-read text that describes universally appealing experiences: feeling the warmth of the sun on your face, listening to music, watching children play, going for a ride in the countryside, and more. Pictures and text together will spark boundless opportunities to discuss and remember happy times and comforting experiences.
Reading The Sunshine on My Face is an instant activity—no planning or preparation is required. Although Alzheimer’s disease and other brain disorders can interfere with communication skills, this book stimulates remaining abilities and lets you connect in positive ways. Use this book to start conversation, encourage physical closeness, promote intergenerational exchanges with children, or provide a calming diversion. A Two-Lap Book’s appeal is universal and timeless.
With a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology, Lydia Burdick’s career has been in human resources. She is president of her own executive search firm, and communicates about making lifestyle choices that minimize risk of Alzheimer’s or other dementias. Lydia wrote the first Two-Lap Book®, The Sunshine on My Face: A Read-Aloud Book for Memory-Challenged Adults, in the course of caring for her mother who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. “One of my greatest pleasures,” she says, “was sitting next to my mother and hearing her read the words from this book when she had stopped speaking almost completely.”
Since the publication of The Sunshine on My Face, Lydia has gone on to write 2 additional read-aloud books for memory-challenged adults: Happy New Year to You! and Wishing on a Star.
A Two-Lap Book® is a trademark owned by Lydia Burdick.
Praise for the 1st Edition of The Sunshine on My Face
“I searched and searched … for a simple picture book written for the Alzheimer’s patient, but all the books were for caregivers. Finally I contacted the National Alzheimer’s Association, and their librarian steered me to [Lydia Burdick’s] wonderful books, which I ordered for my Mom, and she read them about 100 times, with aides helping.”
—Eliezer Sobel, author of picture book Blue Sky, White Clouds
“I used to buy children’s books with big pictures, big words, about animals for my mother, who has advanced dementia. Now to be able to have a book with pictures and words with somebody her age sitting on a chair enjoying the sunset—it’s a really inspired idea.”
—Jill Eikenberry, a New York-based actress
“The colors in this picture book are of a smooth texture, rich, earthy, and satisfying—the images are friendly, open, and restful. It is a gentle work, the tenderness palpable in word and visual experience. There is no doubt that this is generally a very helpful, useful, user-friendly picture book addressing a seriously debilitating challenge.”
—Care Management Journals
“This is a special book. I wish we didn’t need it, but we desperately do. This book will help husbands, wives, sons and daughters connect with that special someone who is increasingly hard to reach.”
—David Shenk, author, The Forgetting: Alzheimer’s: Portrait of an Epidemic
“This is a lovely concept and should be a valued resource for caregivers of memory-impaired persons. It is well done and the reader can improvise additional scenarios following the model pioneered by this book.”
—Carl Eisdorfer, M.D., Ph.D., Knight Professor and Director, University of Miami Center on Aging
“Alzheimer’s patients require special kinds of activities. This book appears to be exactly the kind of reading material which is likely to be useful and appreciated by Alzheimer’s patients in the moderate and severe stages.”
—Barry Reisberg, M.D., Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Clinical Director, Silberstein Aging and Dementia Research Center, New York University School of Medicine
“Unique… I love the concept of a shared reading source. Caregivers are hungry for a source of connection. The physical closeness required for the nature of the product is a plus.”
—Lou Eaves, M.S., CCC-SLP, Eaves Solutions, Inc.
“A charming and delightful tool to help family caregivers engage a loved one, who suffers with dementia, and create an intimate bonding experience for both.”
—Jacqueline Marcell, Author of Elder Rage, and Host of the Coping With Caregiving Internet Radio Program
“This simple book should be a very effective way to promote communication and closeness between a person with dementia and a conversation partner … The format is great—large enough to fit over two laps.”
—Michelle Bourgeois, Ph.D., Department of Communication Disorders, Florida State University
“Lydia Burdick offers caregivers a little ray of sunshine…. Her book, The Sunshine on My Face, is a treasure born of personal experience. The words are simple, to the point, and eminently readable. The illustrations are clear, recognizable, and pretty to look at.”
—Jitka Zgola OT(C), President, Giverny Consultants
“I strongly endorse The Sunshine on My Face. [The author’s] desire to stimulate the senses of seeing, touching, hearing, feeling and tasting in dealing with her mother’s declining memory is reflected throughout the book. We have been working with this special population for many years; we believe Burdick has met a great need.”
—Alice Watkins, Executive Director, Eastern North Carolina Alzheimer’s Association
“The first picture storybook for memory-challenged adults to read out loud with their family and friends! This simple book for aging adults with dementia is the first of its kind. It addresses two of the major challenges that caregivers face: communicating with the person with Alzheimer’s and finding meaningful ways to fill the time. This book is an inexpensive and easy-to-use tool for facilitating meaningful communication between adults with dementia and their caregivers/loved ones.”
—Carers Victoria Library
“In working with families and professionals, The Sunshine on My Face has been an invaluable tool for them to engage people with advanced dementia on a one-to-one basis. The simple words, pleasant themes and colorful illustrations enable everyone to have an enjoyable experience.”
—Daniel Kuhn, LCSW, Vice President of Education, All Trust Home Care (Chicago, IL)
“This book offers a unique way of sharing with someone who is living with dementia. Knowing that your loved one is there communicating with you ‘in the moment’ is such a blessing!”
—Donna Kilgore, Executive Director, Legend at Jefferson’s Garden Assisted Living (Edmond, OK)
“I used to read this book to my mother who had dementia, and it really was the only book that seemed to keep her attention. It deals with day-to-day events that she could not only relate to, but see through the illustrations on each page. I highly recommend The Sunshine on My Face, not only to facilities for memory-impaired individuals, but also for caregivers at home with their loved ones.”
—Linda Jenkins, family caregiver (Austin, TX)
“This book is a TRUE GEM! When reading it together with my mom who has dementia, in very little time her mood changed. She became very engaged and very ALIVE! It is a truly transformational book.”
—Ken Ross, family caregiver (New York, NY)
“As an activities director in assisted living memory care, I frequently used Lydia Burdick’s charming books and witnessed family caregivers as well as staff successfully sharing them with the adults who had memory impairment. Reading together and enjoying the colorful pictures of positive daily activities provides genuine opportunities for engaging interactions. Two-Lap Books are simply fabulous and require no preparation time or materials to get ready.”
—Diane Mowitz, Arbor Terrace Assisted Living and Memory Care (Asheville, NC)
“One of the challenges in caring for someone with dementia is knowing what to talk about. In The Sunshine on My Face, Lydia Burdick and Jane Freeman provide vivid conversation starting points that are fun to look at.”
—Peter V. Rabins, MD, MPH
“[The Two-Lap Books] help caregivers not only interact and engage, but maybe share a few words and a smile.”
—Debbie Reslock, Senior Living Executive