Tips to Calm Your Mind and Body for Better Sleep While Grieving

We all need sleep to stay healthy, but when you’re grieving the loss of a loved one, it’s normal to have a hard time sleeping. Even though this is a common struggle, there are things you can do to get the shut-eye you need. Taking control of your bedtime routine and environment can make a tremendous difference and help you get a more restful night’s sleep.

Switch Up Your Sleep Space

Your sleep environment plays a key role in how well you sleep. This is especially true if you have lost your spouse, but it really applies to anyone. The space where you live often reflects your emotions, but the opposite is also true. When you make your home, and especially your bedroom, a serene space, it can make you feel more calm and uplifted.


If this isn’t the feeling you get from your bedroom, it may be time switch things up. The Huffington Post recommends decorating with a cool color palette, such as light blues, greens, and gray because these colors make you feel more relaxed. The right light is key to relaxation and sleep, too. Instead of using an overhead light fixture, get a bedside lamp so you can keep the light low before you go to bed.


You also need to be as comfortable as possible, so think about any issues that might be keeping you up, such as a too-warm temperature or dry air. Adding a humidifier to your bedroom will help moisturize the air, which is especially important in the winter when it’s dryer. A humidifier can also soothe your skin and nasal passages, making it easier to sleep more comfortably. For optimal performance, make sure you replace your humidifier’s filters regularly. Your bed needs to be comfy, too. Start by making sure you have the right mattress. Many people don’t realize that their sleep position affects the type of mattress they should be sleeping on, or that their grief can cause physical symptoms such as back pain, which can have a direct impact on sleep quality. If you haven’t been sleeping well due to back pain since the loss of your loved one, experts recommend opting for a memory foam mattress, which will help cradle your spine, allowing your body and mind to relax.


Calm Your Mind and Body

Once you have a comfortable and calm sleep environment, focus on your bedtime routine and ways to relax and unwind. Set a regular time for going to bed and getting up every day. Setting a sleep schedule may seem hard when you’re already struggling to sleep, but once it becomes a habit, your body will get used to the schedule, and your natural circadian rhythm will make it easier to fall and stay asleep.


Then, create a pre-bedtime routine that helps you decompress from the day. Some people like reading, listening to music or taking a warm bath before bed. These are all great ways to clear your mind and steer your focus away from anything that’s troubling you. To be even more intentional about relaxation, Very Well Health recommends using meditation or prayer (or both) right before going to sleep.


While your bedtime routine should include elements that are calming and help you get more restful sleep, also be mindful of avoiding things that can keep you up. Don’t use electronics too close to bedtime, and especially not in your bedroom. The light from mobile devices interferes with your natural sleep rhythms, making your brain think it’s time to be awake. Certain foods and drinks can interfere with sleep, too. Avoid anything that contains caffeine (including hidden sources, like chocolate), alcohol, and foods that are very acidic or high in fat.


Give Smart Sleep Gadgets a Try

You want to avoid using electronics with screens before bed, but some electronic gadgets that are designed specifically for sleep can actually help. We like gadgets that promote more restful sleep by providing soothing sounds and light at night. Even better, some also track your sleep patterns, giving you information that makes it easier to adjust things that may be keeping you up.


Loss of sleep while grieving is absolutely normal, and it can be even more pronounced if you’ve lost your spouse. These tips for getting more restful sleep will hopefully help you through that adjustment.


Photo credit: Pexels

“Mommy, when is Grandma coming back?”— Explaining Death to Children

“Mommy, when is Grandma coming back?”— Explaining Death to Children

Knowing what to say to children when a loved one dies can be a challenge. Many Culpeper and Fredericksburg families have approached our team at ­­­­Found and Sons over the years wondering about the “best” ways to handle such a complex and emotional topic. In our work helping families plan funerals or memorial services, we’ve observed that children react to death differently, often depending on their ages.


Don’t hide death from children



While most realize something sad and difficult is going on, some children haven’t developed the coping skills for unpleasant events and may react in physical ways. This might include headaches, upset stomachs, or unusual aches and pains. In some cases, children will regress by thumb-sucking, bed-wetting, or having angry and aggressive tantrums. They may also avoid the issue entirely by pretending the person who died has simply gone shopping or on vacation.  All of these behaviors are entirely normal.


Above all, children need sensitivity, patience, and support as they process the loss. Consider these tips when it comes to how you react to children during a time of grief:



  • Do be honest but keep it simple when explaining death to children. For example, “Grandma’s body stopped working.”
  • Do share your faith, but in a way your children can understand. If they need more details, they will ask questions. It’s perfectly acceptable to admit that you don’t always have the answers.
  • Do help them find ways to express their grief and frustration, such as drawing, music, exercise, or other forms of play.
  • Do include them in the funeral rituals or memorial services you plan.
  • Do express your grief in front of your child. Tears and sadness are normal and appropriate reactions to death.



  • Don’t try to hide the death from them.
  • Don’t change your daily routine. As much as possible, keep to a consistent schedule including school and social events.
  • Don’t use euphemisms and clichés to describe the situation. Phrases like “passed away,” “went to sleep,” or “moved on” can be confusing to children.
  • Don’t be afraid or nervous to talk about your loved one. Research shows that sharing stories and memories helps with healing and closure.
  • Don’t expect children to move through grief Losing a loved one is difficult, regardless of your age.


At Found and Sons, we see it as part of our mission to help the grieving move toward healing, which is why we provide a number of aftercare resources for our families. You can even subscribe to receive our daily email message that provides a dose of encouragement and inspiration. It doesn’t matter what time of day, or what day of the week you need support, we’re here for you. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us today.

Veteran Burials – What You Need to Know

Veteran Burials – What You Need to Know


It’s the time of year when all Americans observe and honor our brave veteran heroes. If there’s anything we know about Culpeper and Fredericksburg families, it’s how patriotic they are! For the family members and friends of these U.S. veterans, Veterans Day is especially meaningful. And for all of us, Veterans Day renews a deep appreciation for all American veterans who have honorably served or are currently serving our great country.

Veteran’s Funeral


At ­­­­Found and Sons Funeral Chapels & Cremation Service, we make honoring our veterans a priority, and we wish to help you plan a respectful funeral. We want our veterans and their family members to know when it comes to memorializing a soldier’s life, he or she deserves only the best.


Most veterans know they can be buried in one of the 135 national cemeteries, with available space. In order to prepare, presenting your discharge papers is a very important part of establishing your eligibility in these cemeteries. However, many veterans wish to be buried close to their family and friends in their hometown in a private cemetery. For veterans from Culpeper and Fredericksburg, our qualified staff is ready to plan a respectful military service for our local heroes.


During a military funeral service, military men and women will honor the veteran with a burial flag and Presidential Memorial Certificate. The burial flag is generally given to next of kin. The U.S. government will provide the headstone or marker, and some veterans are even entitled to burial allowances, meaning partial reimbursement of an eligible veteran’s burial and funeral costs.


An important step in planning a veteran’s funeral is choosing the best way to pay tribute to your loved one’s life. At Found and Sons, we offer many special touches to help you personalize the service, including tribute videos, personalized printing, memorial websites, flowers, and specifically for veterans, a flag presentation with a 21-rifle salute.


We can help you through all these arrangement steps and find out exactly what you are entitled to while planning a funeral for a veteran. We work with these wonderful families often and know the process well. For more information, you can go to, or call our funeral homes at any time.

My Loved One Said, “No Funeral.” What Should I Do?

My Loved One Said, “No Funeral.” What Should I Do?

This is an issue we hear about time and time again at ­­­­Found and Sons Funeral Chapels & Cremation Service: What should I do when my loved one made it clear he or she does not want a funeral or memorial service? Your loved one may be thinking this will help the family by saving them time and money. But what some people here in Culpeper and Spotsylvania Counties don’t realize is how much healing takes place with a meaningful tribute. Plus, when a funeral is preplanned, and maybe even pre-paid, there is so much pressure taken off the family during an already difficult time.

If your loved one has “No funeral,” or even solidified his or her wishes for no service by preplanning, what options do you have?Meaningful tributes

Some might say you should honor the loved one’s wishes. Others might suggest hosting a small, private get-together, where close friends and family members can pay their respects. Then there are those who would say funerals are for the living, and they will decide how to proceed.

As you can see, this can be an incredibly complex issue, and it’s one more and more Culpeper and Fredericksburg families have dealt with in recent years. While there is no cut-and-dried solution, our professional team has a few suggestions for those of you who find yourselves struggling when a loved one makes this request.

We’ve been assisting Culpeper and Fredericksburg families with funerals for decades, and we know the pivotal and highly meaningful role a service plays in the grieving process. A ceremony marks every transition in life: weddings, baptisms, graduations, and funerals. Gathering together to recognize the importance of the life that has been lived is essential after a loss. However, the tribute you plan does not have to reflect a “traditional” funeral.

We offer alternatives such as celebrant services instead of religious services, visitations with or without viewing, unique ceremonies to honor the person who has died, and receptions that feel more like a party than a funeral. We try to be creative in helping families make funeral arrangements, so the decisions truly reflect their personal preferences and the life that has been lived.

At Found and Sons­, we believe every life has meaning, and we will work with you to design the tribute your family needs to bring healing. Reach out to us, and we will help you figure out your next step during this difficult time.

Personalization: Show What Made Your Loved One Special

At family-owned Found and Sons Funeral Chapels & Cremation Service, we believe every life in Culpeper and Fredericksburg represents a unique story. When it comes time to say goodbye to your loved one, our goal is to help you tell their own story in the most meaningful, personal way possible. Our trained staff – led by the Found family – will spend time with you, listen to their story and your needs and wishes, and then help you celebrate what made your friend or family member so memorable.

You’d be amazed at what we can do.

And creating a personal farewell doesn’t have to be expensive. We can help you create a service that is meaningful, yet affordable. Personalization really is all about honoring what your loved one stood for and valued. If your mother loved her garden, we can hand out seeds of her favorite flower for guests to plant in their gardens at home. If your father was a proud Irishman, “Danny Boy” can be played on the bagpipes at the burial. We can arrange for a balloon or dove release as well. At Found and Sons, there are so many ways to celebrate your loved one.

One of the most popular ways to honor a loved one is with a video tribute. You present us with special pictures, home videos, or favorite songs, and we can make a touching video paying tribute to your loved one. During such a difficult time, it is important to remember the happy times and the beautiful memories that you made together.


Don’t forget that personalization when making prearrangements is also a way for you to express your own story. Imagine your loved one’s delight and surprise when they hear your favorite book quoted during your service or your favorite song played graveside. These little touches are what will stay in your family’s hearts forever – one more way for you to leave your mark. Our preplanning specialists can make this happen.


The experienced, compassionate team at Found and Sons is here to help in any way we can, and we will make sure you or your loved one’s personality shines through the funeral service. We hope you’ll reach out to us for more information or to tour our facilities at any time.