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Granny NannyGranny Nanny| Mobile Docs| The Grateful Alive


Granny Nanny| Mobile Docs| The Grateful Alive


Today, approximately 1 out of 3 grandparents are being called back into action to help care for their grandchildren. Suzanne chats with Thomas Gagliano, author of “Don’t Put Your Crap in Your Kid’s Diaper,” to learn more about the challenges of being your own grandchild’s nanny… or in other words, a “Granny Nanny.” 

As times are changing, so are the roles of each family member. In the past, the typical grandparent was expected to do one job: to spoil their grandchildren. Nowadays, it’s commonplace for both parents to have full-time jobs, which requires more grandparents to step up to the plate. Grand-parenting can be surprisingly more difficult than parenting at times, due to differences of opinions in regards to raising children. Thomas Gagliano says that a “granny nanny” should always be on the same page as the parents; a structured game plan is important to avoid sending mixed messages to the grandchild. A “granny nanny” also needs to create a safe place for grandchildren to share their feelings, whether or not they agree with the child. Today, technology plays a large role in our society, and while it’s a very useful tool, it can be a very powerful and dangerous tool in the hands of a child. Thomas emphasizes the importance of monitoring children using technology, and learning the ins-and-outs of the devices they are using.

Kathy Svare joins Suzanne and Thomas to talk about the rewards and challenges she’s experienced being “granny nanny.” Initially, Kathy thought that she would have more time to herself as a grandmother, but being a “granny nanny” has proved to be a full-time job. Time management is an important skill to acquire when watching your grandchildren. At one point, Kathy had her hands full every day with two 4-month-old twins and a 2 year old! It can be difficult to find time to yourself in between reading, coloring and diaper changes. Kathy explains that open communication is important with the grandchildren’s parents, her children; they provide each other with daily reports to ensure everything stays on track. Thomas reiterates the important of constant and open communication as a “granny nanny.” He also recommends celebrating the grandchild’s victories by rewarding them when it’s well-deserved. Additionally, it’s important that grandparents and parents work together to learn tools that encourage their children to do what’s in their own best interest. Despite the challenges, Kathy loves being a “granny nanny.” Wearing a big smile, she confidently tells Suzanne, “I wouldn’t give it up for anything!” 


Going to the doctor is an important part of maintaining our health, but it’s another chore to add to our to-do list. If one thing’s for sure, it would be much easier if the doctor’s office could come to you. Suzanne sits down with Carolyn Cavuto D.O., a mobile physician committed to making patient’s lives easier by visiting them in their own homes and saving them a trip to the doc!

When Carolyn Cavuto went to medical school, she mentored with her family doctor, who performed house calls frequently to do medical exams or diagnose illnesses. Although Dr. Cavuto did not start as a “mobile doc,” a doctor who primarily tends to patients in their own homes, she was always fond of the idea. About 7 or 8 years ago, Dr. Cavuto came across an opportunity in homecare and never looked back. Three years later, she created her own homecare busines, Mobile Physicians Group. Mobile Physicians Group, or MPG, covers most of South Jersey; on average, they drive 110 miles a day. Dr. Cavuto tells Suzanne that she has covered up to 200 miles in a single day! In addition to home visits, Dr. Cavuto also goes to assisted living facilities. She typically sees 8 to 10 patients a day. 

Dr. Cavuto explains that there are many advantages to utilizing mobile doctors rather than scheduling an office visit. Not only are physicians able to spend more time with each patient, but they’re able to evaluate their home environment. Advanced technology has helped “mobile docs” to provide more reliable services than ever with portable EKG units, X-ray scanners and endless Smartphone healthcare applications. “Mobile docs” offer individualized treatment to their patients, which can resolve healthcare issues that may result from a patient seeing too many doctors. Dr. Cavuto says it’s common to see a disconnect between a patient and doctor after a normal office visit, which stems from mixed messages between multiple doctors and too little time being spent with the patient. A patient could be taking double the dose of the same prescription without knowing, or even spending more money on medications that aren’t absolutely necessary. Dr. Cavuto is able to obtain a better understanding of a patient’s medical background and diagnose issues correctly by spending more time with the patient in the comfort of their own homes. MPG maintains a small office for staff meetings and record keeping, but all health care is performed in the patient’s home. Although their services are slightly more expensive than a normal doctor’s visit, most insurance companies cover the costs, as does Medicare. Dr. Cavuto says she absolutely loves what she does – she’s very passionate about her work and loves bringing great services to her patients. She strives to make her patient’s lives healthier and less stressful.


The Grateful Alive is an ever-revolving lineup of talented individuals who are united as one by their love for music. This band, with members ranging from 70 to 90 years old, has been delighting audiences for more than two decades! Suzanne chats with Mary Aldworth, Band Director of The Grateful Alive, to learn more about this talented group and their work in the Philadelphia community.

Mary Aldworth is not only The Grateful Alive’s Band Director, but she is also the group’s lead pianist. The Grateful Alive has introduced Mary to many lovely people, and she has learned so much about music, and herself, while playing with the band. Being a part of The Grateful Alive reignited Mary’s love for playing music and the same can be said for the other members. The Grateful Alive is comprised of experienced and novice musicians. Judith Wadsworth, for example, bought an accordion at the beginning of her retirement and was determined to learn how to play. Two years and some accordion lessons later, Judith was ready to be part of the band! Tom Chambers, the band’s tenor saxophonist, says that the band is very understanding and helpful toward new members, even if you hit a wrong note! Tom feels that The Grateful Alive is not only a wonderful group of musicians, but a great group of people. 

The Grateful Alive performs at many different events throughout the Philadelphia Area. The group practices two times a month, and performs at least twice a month at venues like Veteran’s hospitals, nursing homes and senior centers. One of the original band members decided upon the name “The Grateful Alive” as a positive alternative to the popular band “The Grateful Dead.” Mary says that playing for other senior citizens is very rewarding, and has given her some great stories to tell. At one of The Grateful Alive’s gigs, there was a veteran listening under a pile of blankets and a long face. By the end of the show, he was tapping along with the music and wearing a big smile. The Grateful Alive’s musicians come from very diverse backgrounds from retired lawyers to teachers, a mayor, and even a rabbi! The band’s ultimate goal is to bring a smile to their listener’s faces, which they achieve through their nostalgic tunes. The Grateful Alive allows band members an amazing opportunity to do something they love and share music with others.

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