Our Team Members Embraced the Fight against Alzheimer’s

Posted by in Special Events.

Senior Lifestyle is proud to share the philosophy and goals of the Alzheimer’s Association and proud of our designation as a Global Team. The Longest Day event, which took place in June across America, provided us with an opportunity for total engagement in this important cause. Our corporate and regional team members as well as our local senior communities pulled out all the stops this year to meet our fundraising goals for this event, with 106 Senior Lifestyle teams and 254 participants taking part in the event. Additionally, families and residents at our communities always play a vital part in local events, pledging to spend time raising awareness on The Longest Day.

Our fundraising goal this year was $50,000, and we’re proud to say that we met and far exceeded that goal, with a current total of $87,732.28 in funds raised by all Senior Lifestyle teams! We’re proud to have such a committed group of people working to end Alzheimer’s, and until there’s a cure, our goals will remain high and we’ll do our best to exceed them every year. Planning for The Longest Day begins early each year, with many of our teams already looking forward to outdoing themselves at next year’s event. It’s this team spirit and sense of commitment that makes our Senior Lifestyle fundraisers so successful.

Whitney Lane, a Divisional Director of Health and Wellness for Senior Lifestyle, captained our top fundraising team this year. Whitney has been involved with the Alzheimer’s Association for some time, most recently as Engagement Chair for the Mid-South Alzheimer’s Association chapter. She says that while she has been involved in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s in the past, this is her first experience with The Longest Day. She certainly made an amazing first impression! Whitney and her team put together a gala event, A Night to Remember, held on April 24th, with a silent auction, a photo booth, great food and entertainment. Local businesses provided sponsorships and the silent auction featured Walt Disney World passes as well as a vacation at a time-share in Hawaii!

Whitney says she had never attempted an event of this magnitude before, and was anxious about making everything work, but things came together well. We, at Senior Lifestyle, congratulate Whitney and her team for an amazing first effort and can’t wait to see what they do next year. When asked about an annual event, Whitney smiles and states that “people approached me after the gala and said they’d like to help next year because they want to keep this event going!” She also notes that she’s happy to accept the help and the opportunity to delegate a few of the gala-related tasks next year, as she’s still recovering from the event.

For information on a Senior Lifestyle community near you taking part in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s and what you can do to support the goals of the Alzheimer’s Association, please visit our website at www.seniorlifestyle.com. The Walk to End Alzheimer’s is happening soon in your area, so join a team and support the cause!

Pets Help Us Stay Healthy

Posted by in Expert Advice.

Anyone who has owned a pet knows that coming home after a rough day and sharing quality time can help melt the stress away, but did you know that there are health benefits associated with having a pet? Surprisingly, researchers are only recently learning what many pet parents have known for years: our pets provide emotional support and unconditional love, having done so throughout recorded history. Researchers, though, have only recently begun studying the connection between pet ownership and health. “When you see how long we’ve had pets in our lives, and how important they are to us today, I think it’s amazing that the study of human-animal interactions is still so new,” says Dr. Sandra Barker, director of the Center for Human-Animal Interaction at Virginia Commonwealth University. “Researchers have only recently begun to explore this wonderful relationship and what its health benefits might be.”

The emotional and social benefits of sharing our homes with pets are fairly clear, but how does owning a pet affect our physical health? For dog owners, it comes as no surprise that they specifically are shown to get more exercise on a daily basis than those without a canine companion. This exercise in turn leads to greater cardiovascular health. Daily walks with our four-legged friends also help prevent obesity, and in older adults, can help maintain mobility. Additionally, dog owners have been reported to have lower heart rates and blood pressure, as well as faster stress recovery.

While dog owners outnumber cat owners in the United States, we certainly can’t leave our feline friends out of the health benefit conversation! Cats have some unique qualities that are beneficial to their owners’ health. Although most cats don’t require the same amount of physical activity from their owners as dogs, their purrs have been proven to lower blood pressure and stress. The purring of a contented cat also resonates at a frequency rate between 20 and 140 Hz, a range that is considered medically therapeutic and has been shown to lessen recovery time from muscle injuries and broken bones.

You don’t have to actually own a pet to reap health benefits; therapy animals have become more and more common in settings such as hospitals and senior communities, with patients and staff reporting positive results after interacting with them . At Senior Lifestyle, we’ve seen the connection between pet ownership and health firsthand, and some of our senior communities even have a permanent pet resident! These special ambassadors of goodwill welcome visitors to our communities and provide residents and staff with companionship each day. To learn more about any of our pet-friendly senior communities near you, please visit our website.

Remington House Hosts Family Dinner

Posted by in Community Spotlights.

At Remington House, a Senior Lifestyle community just east of Atlanta, hospitality is a way of life. From the moment guests enter the beautifully appointed senior community, a warm and welcoming atmosphere surrounds them. A sense of family is readily apparent as well; many residents share that they felt at home the moment they first stepped in the door. This sense of family extends to every visitor at Remington House, with staff and residents alike extending a warm welcome.

Family is an important facet of life at Remington House, and nothing says family like a shared meal! The long-standing tradition of generously feeding guests is alive and well, says Director of Sales and Marketing Leslie Piper. She states, “Sharing a meal with guests is a highlight of Southern hospitality, and our menu reflects our Southern heritage, with attention to detail, thoughtful preparation, and an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients.”

The service staff at Remington House understands the importance of the dining experience and truly caters to each resident’s individual tastes, from traditional favorites to special dietary needs. With an abundance of farmer’s markets in the Conyers area as well as gardens on the grounds of the community, farm-to-table fresh ingredients are always available for use, and residents’ favorite recipes and foods are often incorporated into the menu.

In the spirit of true Southern hospitality, Remington House will host a farm-to-table Family Dinner on Saturday, August 26th from 4-7 pm. The meal will feature chef-prepared farm fresh recipes, as well as great company and conversation in a beautiful setting. To join the Remington House family for the Next Course, RSVP to 770-336-1157. Tours of this Senior Lifestyle community will also be available, convenient for those wishing to walk off that second or third helping of a favorite dish!

Keeping our Residents Healthy with Vaccinations

Posted by in Expert Advice.

August is back-to-school month, with children returning to class and young adults leaving for college. August is also National Immunization Awareness Month, an opportunity for people of all ages to make sure they are protected against dangerous or even deadly diseases. While vaccinations for school-age children are often the focus in August, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reminds us that adults need immunizations as well. Vaccinations against the flu, measles, and pneumonia provide protection to not only those immunized, but their communities as well.

At Senior Lifestyle, the health of our residents is our highest priority. Our communities take every opportunity to promote recommended vaccinations for residents, families, volunteers, and members of the surrounding community. Whitney Lane, RN, BSN, MSW, a Senior Lifestyle Divisional Director of Health and Wellness, shares that each Senior Lifestyle community holds an annual flu shot clinic, that also offers the pneumococcal vaccine. Timely immunizations against these and other diseases is a vital part of preventing widespread outbreaks and maintaining the health of our seniors.

Vaccinations produce immunity to disease by introducing a weakened form of the antigen of the disease, causing the body’s immune system to create antibodies against that antigen. When faced again with that particular antigen, our body’s defenses are able to act quickly to contain the threat and limit or avert that illness. For those with chronic illnesses such as diabetes, avoiding infections like the flu can help limit complications of the underlying disease.

For seniors, keeping up with vaccinations is imperative. As we age, our immune system can weaken, increasing our susceptibility to certain diseases and illnesses. In addition, certain vaccines lose their efficiency over time, making booster shots necessary. Wellness visits for adults should include a discussion with your doctor about what immunizations are recommended.

For more information about health and wellness topics, or to learn more about a Senior Lifestyle community near you, please visit our website.

Southern Plantation Hosts a Pickle & Jelly Jamboree

Posted by in Community Spotlights.

At Southern Plantation in Georgia, hospitality is a way of life. Residents enjoy the proximity to Atlanta and all it offers, as well as the comfortable, serene atmosphere of the Loganville area. Respect for the traditional arts is alive and well, says Angela Allen, LPN, the Executive Director of Southern Plantation’s senior community.

Because traditions like canning and preserving food are important to residents and staff alike at Southern Plantation, the community has planned an event centered around honoring these traditions. The Pickle & Jelly Jamboree will take place on Saturday, August 19th, from 10 am until 2 pm, with music, food, and prizes for best pickles and jelly. The event is open to the public and entries will be judged by local VIPs. Director of Sales and Marketing Nancy Griggs says that the hope is for this event to become an annual tradition itself. Staff and residents have even composed an ode to pickles in honor of the event:

Are yours sweet or are yours sour?

We’ll be tasting and judging entries each hour.

Are they dill and crunchy too?

Lots of variations, more than a few.

Picking the best tasting pickles, jams and jellies.

Our judges will leave with big full bellies.

Provide your recipe, attached to the jar.

Winners in each category will be far from par.

So submit your best and hope you win.

The judging will begin promptly at ten!!

Many residents share fond memories of harvesting and preserving food as children and young adults. Says Southern Plantation resident Nancy Williams:

“I am so delighted to hand down my mother’s easy recipe for homemade jelly. I am one of 8 children so my mother had a full garden of fruits and vegetables to assist with the amount of food we needed with such a large family. I had 5 brothers and they were the ones to go pick from the garden. My mother would not let the girls go without my brothers as there were bad snakes in and around our garden. My favorite jelly was my mother’s blackberry and grape jelly and I am looking forward to making it and entering it into the contest!”

For more information about this event and the traditions at Southern Plantation, or to learn more about a Senior Lifestyle community in your area, please visit our website. If you happen to be in the Loganville area on August 19th, stop in for a music, food, and some traditional fun!

The Importance of Friendships | Senior Lifestyle

Posted by in Expert Advice.

Here at Senior Lifestyle, we think that, of all the awesome holidays in August, Friendship Day may in fact be our favorite! We like this holiday so much that we feel it should be Friendship Day every day, because every day in our senior living communities, friendships are developed or even re-kindled when new residents move in. We often hear stories from family members and residents about the discovery of long-lost friends “just down the hall” and we’re delighted when friends re-connect! New friendships are wonderful too, and often happen when residents welcome new neighbors to take part in an activity or a social hour. There’s an old song that says “Make new friends, but keep the old…” and we feel there’s no better advice!

According to the official Friendship Day website, in 1935 the United States Congress declared the first Sunday in August to be National Friendship Day. The idea caught on, and Friendship Day became an annual event. The day has become so popular that it is now celebrated internationally, and in 1997 Friendship Day gained a world-renowned Ambassador of Friendship when the United Nations voted none other than Winnie-the-Pooh to this prestigious role.

Congressional proclamations and celebrity endorsements aside, research from Harvard Medical School shows that frequent social interaction and strong social connections are healthy, no matter your age. Quality over quantity appears to be a key to this health benefit, as individuals with a limited but strong social support system seem to fare as well as those with a vast group of connections. The effects of these strong social bonds appear to be as powerful in their influence of long-term health as a good diet, adequate sleep, and a non-smoking lifestyle. Studies show that this benefit is especially meaningful for seniors, as it decreases the risk of dementia significantly.

When asked what factors led to a search for senior living, many residents at Senior Lifestyle communities say that a need for more social interaction was a deciding factor. Additionally, the availability of group activities is often a source of satisfaction for these residents. What does all this mean? In a nutshell, it means that forming (and maintaining) strong friendships and social connections not only feels good, but it IS good! As health strategies go, it doesn’t get much easier than being a friend: no weights to lift, no special equipment, and no membership required!

To learn more about Senior Lifestyle, please visit our website at www.seniorlifestyle.com.

Social Media and Friendships – The Atrium at Boca Raton

Posted by in Community Spotlights.

Much like the residents they care for, the team members at The Atrium at Boca Raton are a fascinating group of people! With hobbies that range from falconry to scuba diving to motorcycle riding, the staff at The Atrium bring a great deal of diversity to residents’ lives by sharing their personal interests and backgrounds. Executive Director Sandy Sternefeld sums up the atmosphere at The Atrium, saying, “Everyone on the management team has a passion for what they do, and we’re a family. That passion attracts like-minded people and it filters down and filters out.”

Ask Activity Director Amelia Verlin about the most interesting facet of life at The Atrium and she’ll laugh and say “Where do I start?” Amelia, a falconry enthusiast and former jeweler who makes handbound books with beautiful Japanese papers, posted a photo of her work on Instagram and in so doing, struck up a friendship with a Japanese woman named Setsuko who admired Amelia’s work and recognized the paper used. That friendship has blossomed and grown to include residents at The Atrium, giving the community a unique overseas friendship that continues to thrive (with a little help from social media)! Gifts and photos are exchanged regularly, and residents look forward to hearing from their Instagram “pen pal” in Japan!

International friendship via social media seems to be a theme at The Atrium. The residents have also befriended a photographer named Jake, a native of Marrakesh, who travels to exotic locales to take photos for the camera company Canon. The friendship began with a resident “liking” a photo Jake posted on Instagram, and the rest is history. Questions, photos and videos now fly back and forth regularly! In his recent travels to Africa, Jake shared some amazing pictures with The Atrium’s staff and residents. In return, the residents made a mezuzah for Jake, which now travels with him and is placed on the front of his tent wherever he may be.

Ana McKinney, Sales and Marketing Director at The Atrium and a native of Lima, Peru, notes that the residents and staff at The Atrium share a thirst for knowledge and a genuine interest in one another’s interests and backgrounds. She was thrilled to share details about the culture of her beautiful home country when residents asked questions, and says that each resident has a story to tell as well. Whether learning about falconry or Facebook, residents and staff delight in their diversity!

At Senior Lifestyle our skilled and compassionate team helps Senior Living residents learn, grow, and connect in ways they never expected. The best part is that we learn from our residents even more than they learn from us, which might explain why our programs and services continue to evolve and improve every year. To learn more about The Atrium at Boca Raton or to schedule a tour of this community, please visit our website.

Make Your Home at Chancellor’s Village | Senior Lifestyle

Posted by in Community Spotlights.

Most people have strong feelings about the place they call home, often describing home as a state of mind rather than a physical place. At Senior Lifestyle, we wholeheartedly agree! The elements that make a home are different for each individual, but each home shares an underlying sense of comfort, freedom, and safety.  Chancellor’s Village embodies those elements in a unique, beautiful atmosphere that says “Welcome home!”

Lydia Child, a 19th century activist, once wrote, “Home – that blessed word, which opens to the human heart the most perfect glimpse of Heaven, and helps to carry it…” Dosha Delozier, for example, calls Chancellor’s Village her “little bit of heaven”. Dosha moved to the community almost three months ago, learning about the senior community after following the Chancellor’s Village transportation van while out with her family. Dosha knew nothing about her new home until this unexpected encounter, but now says that the care she receives is above and beyond her expectations. After a lifetime of caring for others, Dosha enjoys the comfort and ease of her new home at Chancellor’s Village.

Transportation was a key factor for Fran Fredericks when she was looking for a senior community to call home. When she stopped driving, Fran worried about getting to church, running errands, and giving up the freedom of going when and where she wished. The transportation service at Chancellor’s Village, which runs five times daily five days per week, and to church on Sunday, erased those worries for Fran as well as her daughters. Fran says that, at the age of 92, she feels that Chancellor’s Village is the best and safest place to be.

Carol and Roy Britton have been married for 58 years. When they moved into their two-bedroom apartment at Chancellor’s Village, Carol was delighted to learn about the many activities available in the senior community, and equally delighted to let someone else do the cooking so that she could participate in activities like her favorite pastime in her new home, water aerobics. As an artist, Roy enjoys taking part in art shows held at Chancellor’s Village, such as the upcoming event on August 16th. Carol and Roy’s daughter and son-in-law are relieved that they no longer have to worry about their parents and say they rest better at night knowing that Carol and Roy call the community their home.

19th century writer Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. claimed that “Where we love is home – home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts” and Chancellor’s Village is a wonderful place to call home! An upcoming event, an art exhibition on August 16th from 2 to 4 pm, showcases work from the community’s artists-in-residence as well as other local artists. On August 29th, a seminar highlighting selling a home through auction is scheduled at 2 pm. To RSVP to these events or plan a visit of this beautiful senior community, please call 540-786-5000 or visit the Senior Lifestyle website.

Senior Lifestyle Celebrates August Holidays

Posted by in Holidays.

Poor, lonely August, sandwiched between its neighbors, the superstar holiday months of July and September, with their fancy fireworks, parades, and picnics. It is a much-maligned month with no special attributes or fancy talents, known only as “Back to School” month by millions of children who blame August for a summer vacation cut woefully short. We at Senior Lifestyle feel for August, we really do. If the months had a talent show, it seems that August would recite some boring piece of prose while the other contestants composed and sung their own operas and twirled flaming batons. It just isn’t fair. What did August ever do to deserve this kind of disrespect?

Sure, it’s hot and muggy in August and the vegetable garden is nearly played out, except for those darn zucchinis, which we all know are like fruitcake, just passed from neighbor to neighbor because no one knows quite what to do with them. Sure, in August the kids are an odd mix of crabby and excitable because school starts soon and they can’t quite decide if the prospect of new school clothes cancels out the summer math homework that they are frantically trying to finish. Sure, parents are frazzled in August because school starts soon and they don’t even know how to help with the summer math homework, much less navigate the mall for all the new school clothes that must be bought before the first day of school. Wait, where were we going with this? Oh yes, that’s right, poor August, the space filler between July and September.

Wait, space filler? Poor August? We think not! August is not only Family Fun Month and National Picnic Month, but also Peach Month and Romance Awareness Month. August holidays abound! August is a superstar! In fact, there seems to be a wacky, wonderful holiday nearly every day in August, not to mention weekly holidays like National Simplify Your Life Week, National Smile Week, Friendship Week, and Be Kind to Humankind Week. What more can we expect from any month? According to Holiday Insights, there’s a bumper crop of August holidays. Speaking of bumper crops…remember that zucchini that keeps piling up on your picnic table? Well, August 8th is Sneak Some Zucchini onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Day, so feel free to celebrate accordingly.

Senior Lifestyle will certainly celebrate Senior Citizen’s Day on August 21st because our seniors are a great reason to celebrate! Many of us will also celebrate Left Hander’s Day on August 13th and some might even compose a few lines for Bad Poetry Day on the 18th. However you choose to celebrate August holidays, remember to make the most of each day, and if you’re exhausted from all that zucchini-picking, take heart friends, because August 10th is Lazy Day!

At Senior Lifestyle, we believe each day should be a celebration! To schedule a tour or learn more about any Senior Lifestyle community or any of our wonderful August events, please visit www.seniorlifestyle.com, and celebrate August with us!

Home Is Where The Art Is At Harbour Village

Posted by in Community Spotlights.

The arts, whether culinary, performing, or fine, represent a vital aspect of life, and in the Greendale, Wisconsin area, residents don’t have to look very far to see representations of each. From the Taste of Home test kitchens in Greendale, where visitors can sample delicious cookies and even take home the recipes, to Summerfest, the largest music festival in the world, to the iconic Milwaukee Art Museum sailing over the shore of Lake Michigan, art in all its forms abounds. This year on August 9th, residents and staff at Harbour Village in Greendale will go a step further, bringing an appreciation for the arts home by taking part in the Interfaith Lifetime Art Exhibit. This traveling exhibit, sponsored in part by the Helen Daniels Bader Fund and The Evan and Marion Helfaer Foundation, features the best work of artists ages 50 or better in Wisconsin and will spend the summer visiting various locations.

Katie Campbell, the Director of Resident Programming at Harbour Village, recognizes that the Interfaith Lifetime Art Exhibit is a “wonderful opportunity for our residents and the local community to enjoy some of the best artwork in Wisconsin right here in their very own backyard.” Its participation not only brings recognition to an overlooked population of artists, but it also encourages community members to become more involved in the arts. Harbour Village and the Interfaith Lifetime Art Exhibit join forces to celebrate the ages and unique talents of local artists. By applauding the creativity and energy of senior artists, they hope to embolden artists of all ages to be confident in their work and to share with their communities.

Harbour Village is honored to host the Interfaith Lifetime Art Exhibit! If you are in the neighborhood of Greendale on August 9th, be sure to stop by Harbour Village between 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. to enjoy some of the finest artwork in Wisconsin! This wonderful exhibit proves without a doubt that art knows no age limit and that great art can often be found close to home. For information on this event or the community, please visit our website.