Gift Ideas for those living with diabetes!


It’s that time of year. We give and we receive. We try our best to make our children’s holidays wonderful, magical, and happy. We make our Christmas card lists, our shopping lists, and our To-do lists. In an effort to help you think through your lists and ease some of your shopping worries, I have prepared what I consider to be the best gifts for those living with diabetes. We know that persons with diabetes) PWD can  eat the treats and love toys and fashion as much as the next person. However, we also live life a little differently and spend more time than the average person poking and prodding ourselves, counting and measuring our food both in category and quantity, and spend countless hours doing the mental math of what is circulating in our systems, what we are using as fuel, and what level of activity we have just completed and what level of activity is upcoming. We are busy, tired, stressed, and usually don’t feel like we are doing the best job. Let’s celebrate this season with easing our lives, helping others and getting healthier. Here are some ideas for women, men, children, and families together. img_4850

  1. Manicures with paraffin wax- Our hands and fingers can always use a little TLC. Regular manicures (even for you guys) doesn’t have to mean the polish, but the soaking, massaging, and especially the moisturizing can help our tender or for those of us that have lived with this for a bit longer, our rough callused hands. The right nail polish can also make us feel a bit better at least on the outside, even when we feel a bit sluggish on the inside.
  2. Massages- This one I can’t stress enough! Regularly scheduled massages should be a part of all our health protocol (at least in my opinion). The benefits for diabetics in particular are huge. It breaks up the fascia and helps the scar tissue from forming. It helps with blood flow and circulation. This practice helps us find our balance. The act of massage stimulates your muscles. So in layman’s terms that means it is a little bit like exercising. If you are struggling to get back into a workout routine, have aches and pains, or are attempting to find some positivity in your life, get your muscles moving. If you can’t get to it that day, a massage is a small version of exercise. Make sense? Be sure to find a therapist that you like. I highly recommend Olivia at Elements Scottsdale Promenade. She makes me set an intention for the hour. If I feel like a failure that day, I remember that I am doing something good for my body. If I am so stressed and tired, I remember that I am taking this time for myself to reset for the rest of the day. One time I went after receiving an HbA1c of 6.0. I felt good. I then realized that I was exhausted. I went for the massage immediately following my endocrinology appointment. I had time to decompress from the silent stress that we all face before receiving our quarterly lab results. I had time to process the result in a way that I usually do not. I can focus and continue to think through my feelings and find the motivation to keep up the good work.
  3. A Journal- This is a must. Most kids and even adults are into electronics. I want you to go old school for this one. I make all of my clients journal in two columns, no matter where they stand in their diabetes care. One column is for Gratitude/Thankful for. The second column is Things I like about myself. This is MUCH harder than the first. One client took 4 weeks to admit one physical thing she liked about herself. Get a paper journal that they can doodle, write, or ignore for a while even. It will be useful when it is needed.
  4. Clean out the kitchen- This is a gift for the entire family. We get so much of the unhealthy foods at so many places outside of our homes. My kid gets hers at lunch, sports practices, birthday parties, friend’s homes, club activities, and school. It is fine if your diabetic loved one eats these things. Just make their home a place for clean eating. Clear out the junk food. Clear out the fake food. Fill it with fresh veggies and fruits, lean proteins, only complex carbs, and seasonings galore.
  5. Make everyone in your family count carbs- It is hard enough to feel segregated from the other members of the family. Make Carb Counting a family practice. Ask all your kids how many carbs they are eating. Label the food on the table. Make husbands, wives, and siblings do the same counting. It helps educate all of the family about healthy eating. Let the people with diabetes hear you asking the other members of the family what the carb counts are for that meal or snack. If you are a spouse, then let your partner know that you are doing it also.
  6. Portable power banks- Most all our pumps and meters are turning into USB charged devices. Between my meter, my pump, and my CGM, one of them always needs charging. Help ease the mental responsibility of life with diabetes, but buying some portable power sources. One for the backpack, one for the purse, one for the locker or office. You can be extra nice and throw in some extra power cords with a label on them.
  7. Cord labels- These can come in any format. They sell expensive color coded cord wraps; you can use a piece of tape, but ease their lifestyle with easily identifiable cords. My charging cord for my pump is different than my meter cord. I get frustrated when I grab the wrong one and find myself away from home.
  8. Meal planning- Make everyone participate in planning the main meal of the day. If you are purchasing for a person with diabetes that lives alone, consider providing them with gift cards from healthy take out options such as My Fit Foods. Everything is fresh, healthy, and labeled properly. It takes the guess work out of preparing when you are too tired to eat healthy.
  9. A new case, bag, or kit to carry their supplies around- A person with diabetes should have their testing equipment, and fast acting glucose with them at all times. Let it be fun. I always let my daughter pick out a new zipper bag for my purse each year or so. Sometimes it wasn’t my favorite color or design, but it was my favorite because it was what she thought was great at that age. Liven up the boredom and monotony of this chronic illness with a few new gadgets.
  10. Pedicures- These are tricky. If your PWD has foot wounds or ingrown toenails, this might not be the best option. I know we are all supposed to check our feet, but I don’t do it as often as I could. It is nice to have someone else notice the bottom of my feet or at least make me pay attention to them while I am getting them worked on during the appointment. In places like Arizona where we wear flip-flops all year, our heels get dry and cracked very quickly. Help keep them from becoming a problem.
  11. A donation in their name- The kids might not be excited about this, but many adults are happy to know that someone made a donation to a diabetes organization in their name. Donate to a summer camp for diabetic children, a nonprofit organization, or for research.
  12. Volunteer – I must stress this as a lifelong goal. Please help others! This is a surefire way to feel better if you live with a chronic illness. Take the focus off of your own circumstances and do something good for someone else. Make it a regular habit. Let the person with diabetes pick the category of helping animals, children, the elderly, the hungry, the homeless. . . The list is endless. Watch how helping others make them feel better.
  13. ID Jewelry- a new piece of jewelry that they enjoy
  14. Fitness Trackers- enough said
  15. Healthy food delivery options-They are up and coming everywhere. Graze sends small portable snacks every few weeks. There are similar items that ship ingredients for freshly prepared meals at home including the menu.
  16. A Diabetes Coach Gift Certificate- Simply contact me via email, phone or text and I’ll send you a gift certificate for pantry organization, meal planning and shopping, or a schedule of sessions one on one. or 480-266-0972

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I WANT TO BE . . . Series

runninggirlI had a great time meeting some new kids during my Teen Only series yesterday! We get open, honest, and very real. My girls group could have used another hour to wrap it up. They all contributed and shared. My guys group was much smaller, but informative for some more recently diagnosed guys.

Sign up now for the next meeting in this series:

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Ledgerwood Associates, Inc.
7440 East 6th Avenue, Suite 100
Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Girls ages 12-18 12:00-2:00 p.m.
Boys ages 12-18 2:30-4:30 p.m.

$20 Limited Seating 

Must RSVP to or text 480-266-0972

Teen Only Series!

I WANT TO BE . . .

Healthier! Smarter! Stronger! Alive! Confident!  Better at making friends! Thinner! In better BG control! Different! My real Self! Unafraid! Happy! Positive! TRUE TO ME!

 No Parents! Honest Struggles! Plans for Progress!

A Monthly Series for Teens with Type I Diabetes

 Ledgerwood Associates, Inc.

7440 East 6th Avenue, Suite 202

Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Sunday, October 23, 2016      

Girls ages 12-18 12:00-2:00 p.m.

Boys ages 12-18 2:30-4:30 p.m.

 $20    Limited Seating    MUST RSVP TO

Marianne@diabeteslifestylecoach or text 480-266-0972



So honored to be with these kids!

Phoenix ADA Youth Ambassadors!

Phoenix ADA Youth Ambassadors!

I am truly honored to be a volunteer with the Phoenix American Diabetes Association! I am one of the chairs of their youth program: Youth Ambassadors/Youth Leadership Council. These kids all fund-raise, advocate, and educate about living life with diabetes. They take time out of their already busy schedules and give their time for a good cause! Every single one of these kids is unique in their interests, habits, and likes. They all care about supporting those living with diabetes. I am proud to get the opportunity to know them. They teach me as much as I hope to inspire them.
I have been a part of this group for years. Kids have gone off to college and grown up. New ones join each year. I feel connected to these kids and I love getting to know them on their terms. IMG_4806
These youth spend their time honoring community sponsors and volunteers. They fund raise for the ADA Step Out to Stop Diabetes Walk, The BAD Ride and the Tour de Cure. They go to Washington D.C. to speak to our government. They speak to our Politicians of Arizona. They encourage other kids, and inspire many by being examples of hope.

They also are typical kids with the same cares and concerns of so many. They face the challenge of living with a chronic illness that demands their attention, time, commitment, fear, and tolerance. This is more than the average teen must endure. They do it well!

November was Diabetes Awareness Month. For our December meeting, we had a party. Even at my old age, it is hard to live with diabetes. It has been a difficult year. The surest way I know to feel better is to do good for others. My gift was a party for these kids. I wanted them to have the same feeling. We spent the entire month of November raising funds for our cause. We focused on diabetes. It deserves far more attention that it receives. These kids did a great job. Their life is not necessarily better after a month of hard work. There is no cure.

These kids that live with diabetes made treat bags for those less fortunate; kids their same age, trafficked, abused, or homeless. They are appreciative and grateful of those that contribute to their own cause. They also are kind enough to give back as they can. They deserve a party. Most of the time they don’t enjoy a party as most would.IMG_4795

These kids can all eat candy, make gingerbread houses, and have a big lunch spread for a holiday gathering. They just need some help knowing what they are eating. These awesome kids can build some serious gingerbread houses and they can figure out the carbohydrate count after they finish. Oh, if only the regular population could do the same! IMG_4835

These kids struggle like everyone else. They work harder than most kids. They tolerate bullying and scrutiny at every turn. These kids are fierce and I am so proud to be able to hang out with them and get to know them. They teach me at every meeting. If you know a person living with diabetes, make sure they have some diabetes support! You can find a group like this at any age! IMG_4810

Re-posting: Halloween Carb Counts!

I am thankful to the American Diabetes Association for publishing information like this! Help your child (or yourself- I am a Jr. Mint/York Peppermint Patty junkie). Every kid can enjoy the treats of Halloween without disastrous repercussions if carb counts are known. Take a minute and look through this list. Have a great October! 1‐800‐DIABETES (342‐2383)
Carbohydrate Content of Popular Halloween Treats
Candy Size/Package Carb Count
100 Grand Fun Size Bar 15 grams
3 Musketeers Fun Size Bar (16 g) 12 grams
3 Musketeers Miniature Miniature Bar 4 grams
Air Heads 1 Mini Air Head Bar 11 grams
Almond Joy Snack Size Bar 10 grams
Ande’s Mints 1 mint 3 grams
Appleheads/Cherryheads/Grapeheads 10 pieces 14 grams
Atomic Fireballs 1 piece 9 grams
Baby Ruth Fun Size Bar 12 grams
Bit-O-Honey 6 pieces 38 grams
Bottle Caps 10 pieces 14 grams
Brach’s Caramel Creams 1 piece 8 grams
Brach’s Cinnamon Hard Candy 1 piece 6 grams
Brach’s Fruit Chews 1 piece 6 grams
Brach’s Milkmaid Caramels 1 piece 7 grams
Brach’s Milkmaid Caramel Rolls 5 pieces 28 grams
Brach’s Starlight Peppermints 1 piece 5 grams
Brach’s Strawberry Filled Hard Candy 3 pieces 13 grams
Original Flavored Bubble Yum 1 piece 6 grams
Butterfinger Fun Size Bar (21 g) 15 grams
Brach’s Candy Corn 22 pieces (40 g) 36 grams
Charleston Chew (Vanilla Flavored) 13 pieces (40 g) 29 grams
Charms Junior Blow Pop 1 pop 14 grams
Charms Regular Blow Pop 1 pop 14 grams
Charms Super Blow Pop 1 pop (38 g) 34 grams
Dots 12 dots (43 g) 35 grams
Dove Milk Chocolate Promises 5 Pieces (40 g) 24 grams
Dove Milk Chocolate Promises w/ Caramel 5 pieces (40 g) 24 grams
Double Bubble Gum 1 piece 5 grams
Dum Dum Suckers 1 sucker 7 grams
Fruit by the Foot 1 Roll 17 grams
Fruit Roll Up 1 Roll Up 12 grams
Goldfish Crackers 40 pieces 15 grams
Good and Plenty 33 pieces 33 grams
Blackforest Gummy Bears 11 pieces 30 grams
Gummy Body Parts 1 piece 8 grams
Gummy Eye Balls 1 piece 12 grams 1‐800‐DIABETES (342‐2383)
Candy Size/Package Carb Count
Walgreen’s Gummy Worms 13 pieces 31 grams
Heath Bar Snack Size bar 9 grams
Heide Red Raspberry Dollars 15 pieces 34 grams
Hershey’s Almond Bar 3 mini bars 15 grams
Hershey’s Kissables Snack Size Pouch 9 grams
Hershey’s Kisses 1 piece 3 grams
Hershey’s Milk Chocolate 3 Snack Size bars 25 grams
Hershey’s Miniature Krackel 1 miniature bar 5 grams
Hershey’s Miniature Milk Chocolate 1 miniature bar 5 grams
Hershey’s Miniature Mr. Goodbar 1 miniature bar 4 grams
Hershey’s Miniature Special Dark 1 miniature bar 5 grams
Hershey’s Nugget 1 piece 6 grams
Hershey’s Pay Day Fun Size bar 10 grams
Hershey’s Peanut Butter Kisses 9 pieces 21 grams
Hershey’s Smores Snack Size bar 12 grams
Hot Tamales 10 pieces 18 grams
Jawbusters 3 pieces 17 grams
Jolly Rancher Double Blast 1 package (10 pieces) 33 grams
Jolly Rancher Fruit Chews 6 pieces (39 g) 33 grams
Jolly Rancher Hard Candy 3 pieces 17 grams
Jolly Rancher Lollipop 1 lollipop 16 grams
Juicy Fruit Gum 1 Stick (3 g) 2 grams
Junior Caramels 1 small box 10 grams
Junior Mints 1 small box 11 grams
Kit Kat 3 two-piece bars 28 grams
Kraft Caramel 1 piece 6 grams
Laffy Taffy 1 piece 6 grams
Lemonheads 10 pieces 14 grams
Lifesavers Gummi Savers 6 pieces 13 grams
Lifesavers Hard Candies 4 pieces 16 grams
M & M’s (peanut) Mini Pack 13 grams
M &M’s (plain) Mini Pack 15 grams
M & M’s Mini Box Mini Box 10 grams
Mary Janes 1 piece 7 grams
Mentos 1 piece 3 grams
Milk Duds 13 pieces 28 grams
Milky Way Fun Size Bar 12 grams
Milky Way Miniature Miniature Bar 6 grams
Mounds Fun Size Bar 10 grams
Necco Junior Wafers 1 roll 13 grams 1‐800‐DIABETES (342‐2383)
Candy Size/Package Carb Count
Nerds 1 Tbsp 14 grams
Nestle Crunch Mini 1 mini bar 10 grams
Nestle Crunch Fun Size Bar 9 grams
Nestle Crunch White Chocolate 1 regular size 23 grams
Nestle Crunch Caramel 2 Fun Size Bars 25 grams
Now and Later 1 piece 3 grams
NutRageous Snack Size 9 grams
Oreos 4 cookies 25 grams
Peep’s Ghosts 1 ghost 11 grams
Pixie Sticks Each Stick 2 grams
Pop Rocks 1 package (7 g) 7 grams
Razzles 2 pieces 3 grams
Red Hots 1 oz box 27 grams
Reese’s Cup with Caramel 1 package- 2 cups 24 grams
Reese’s Cup with White Chocolate 1 package-2 cups 22 grams
Reese’s Fast Break Snack size bar 12 grams
Reese’s Inside Out 1 package- 2 cups 20 grams
Reese’s Mini Cups 5 pieces 22 grams
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups 1 package -2 cups 29 grams
Reese’s Pieces 50 pieces 23 grams
Rice Krispie Treat 1 bar (22 g) 17 grams
Ring Pop 1 ring pop 14 grams
Rolos 1 piece 5 grams
Runts 12 pieces 14 grams
Scooby-Doo Fruit Snacks 1 pouch 21 grams
Shock Tarts 9 pieces (16 g) 14 grams
Skittles Mini Pack 18 grams
Smarties 1 Roll 7 grams
Snickers Fun Size Bar 12 grams
Snickers Almond Fun Size Bar 11 grams
Sour Patch Kids 1 package (17 g) 16 grams
Sour Patch Twist 1 twist 5 grams
Sprees 1 pouch 12 grams
Starburst 4 pieces 16 grams
Sugar Babies Snack Size 24 grams
Sugar Daddy 1 junior pop 11 grams
Super Bubble 1 piece 5 grams
Swedish Fish 1 package (17 g) 16 grams
Sweet Tarts (giant, chewy) 1 tart 9 grams
Sweet Tarts (mini, chewy) 1 pouch 18 grams 1‐800‐DIABETES (342‐2383)
Candy Size/Package Carb Count
Sweet Tarts (small, hard) 5 packs of 3 candies 13 grams
Sweet Tart Chews 1 piece 7 grams
Sweet Tart Shockers 9 pieces (16 g) 14 grams
Sweet Tart Twists (chewy) 1 twist 6 grams
Toostie Caramel Apple Pops 1 pop 15 grams
Tootsie Miniature Pops 1 pop 4 grams
Tootsie Pop 1 pop 15 grams
Tootsie Roll Bar 1 bar (14 g) 10 grams
Tootsie Roll Fruit Rolls 6 pieces (40 g) 28 grams
Tootsie Roll Midgee Chews 6 pieces (40 g) 28 grams
Tootsie Roll Mini Chews 30 pieces 27 grams
Twix Fun Size Piece 10 grams
Twizzlers 1 twizzler (10 g) 8 grams
Twizzler Pull ‘N Peel 1 piece (33 g) 25 grams
Twizzlers Mini Bar 1 bar (14 g) 11 grams
War Heads Extreme Sour Hard Candy 1 piece 3 grams
War Heads Juniors Sour Hard Candy 1 piece 1 gram
Werther’s Original Chewy Caramel
1 piece 5 grams
Werther’s Original Hard Candy 1 piece 4 grams
Whoppers 1 Fun Size (3 pieces) 6 grams
York Peppermint Patties Bite Size 1 piece 11 grams
York Peppermint Patties (39 grams) 1 piece 31 grams
Zours 23 pieces (40 g) 36 grams

CVS ExtraCare Advantage for Diabetes

I have spent the past two weeks trying to update all of my prescriptions, mail order pharmacy timelines, and warranty information for all of my various diabetes devices, etc. I am wiped out from the phone calls, the confusion, and the waiting. I have spoken with some great people over the phone and yet I still feel completely isolated on this trek. I miss the time in my life when I knew my pharmacist! I am not trying to be nostalgic. I am all in for modern day advances and conveniences. However, anyone living with diabetes knows that we need a team. I need to feel more confident in my supplies, organization, and shopping for my care. So get ready CVS, here I come!

I have decided to take a challenge and see if I can ease the stress and running around town in search of quality and low cost diabetes supplies! My family and I are going to use CVS pharmacies for the next three months! This does not include my Dexcom CGM or my T:Slim pump supplies. However, this does include prescriptions, testing supplies, low blood glucose remedies, snacks, and the use of CVS online services. I have joined ExtraCare advantage for Diabetes online and am determined to stick with a program to reap some benefits!

I went online and signed up for their app, which was easy. I went into a store to see how easy it would or would not be to get everything switched over from a competitor. Like many others, I require several prescriptions and getting the auto refill is a much needed service. The pharmacist was nice and efficient. She asked if I wanted all the bells and whistles, such as to be notified by text for updates, etc. I signed up for all of these perks.

I plan to use the CVS App to manage my reminders and hopefully keep better track of my prescriptions and prescription history. I also plan to use it to pull out and work with my endocrinologist during future appointments. I recommend that clients take in lists with prescriptions and questions to their physicians. I am hoping to use their app to help with this.

I am excited to report that I have been using the CVS/pharmacy Advanced Glucose Meter and test strips. Each time that I have used it I have simultaneously used my One Touch Verio IQ meter. So far the results are extremely comparable. I now will be looking at most of the CVS products and comparing price, quantity, and quality across several retailers.

I have used store brands before, but have not had the same positive results from glucose testing. I am anxious to compare the glucose tablet products that they offer as well. After years of eating glucose tablets, then mainly using food sources for simple sugar fixes, I have returned to preferring glucose tablets or gel as a portable and lower calorie option. I also am looking forward to utilizing the ExtraCare Advantage program to see discounts on all of these products.



I am ready to see if I can get that old feeling back with my pharmacy. I love to use the advanced technology options and am ready to see if I can consolidate and save some money. Follow my trek on this blog and hopefully I’ll be able to provide some good news soon. Meanwhile, browse their products on-line and stop in and don’t hesitate to actually speak to the pharmacy staff instead of just giving them the name on your prescription! Stay Tuned!#CVSHealthySolutions

All The Best,
Marianne Tetlow
The Diabetes Coach

Disclosure: I’m proud to partner with CVS/pharmacy for this campaign. I am being sponsored by CVS/pharmacy for my posts and activities, but all opinions expressed are my own, ans all product claims or program details shared should be verified at or with the appropriate manufacturers.