In 2021, video calls are necessary for staying in touch with family and friends. That’s why it is so important that each call has the best possible quality. Following last month’s article, here are 3 more tips to improve your video calls: limit the number of people on your call, turn the volume up, and use Wi-Fi.
Limit the Number of People on the Call
One of the greatest difficulties with video calls is losing connection or having poor connection. This issue increases when the number of people on the call increases. If multiple people in one house are on the same call, they are each using Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi uses broadband signal—a set amount of signal sent out to the house to be used.
The more people using the Wi-Fi at the same time, the weaker the signal will be for each device since the broadband has to be split several ways. When this happens, it is very easy for calls to be dropped. The best way to improve call quality is to limit the number of devices connected to the Wi-Fi at the same time.
Use Wi-Fi Instead of Data
Speaking of Wi-Fi, using Wi-Fi instead of data allows for seamless streaming and service for the video calls. Data can easily go out due to location and telephone service, whereas Wi-Fi is more consistent, and should a problem occur, it is easier to fix.
If you have a limited data plan, most plans will run on slower speeds once the limit has been met. On Wi-Fi, cellular data is not used, so you do not have to worry about exceeding your data limit. The one caveat to this rule is that Wi-Fi does have limits depending on your internet provider. Before making video calls, make sure your local internet provider has a plan strong enough for video calls. The last thing you want is to make video calls and exceed your internet usage limit!
Turn the Volume Up
The last thing to do when speaking on a video call is to turn the volume up. Starting the call with the volume turned all the way up makes for easy listening and allows for proper adjustment afterwards.
One of the most difficult things about video calls is not being able to hear the person clearly. This problem can be solved by simply turning the volume all the way up. However, the use of volume should be adjusted to the setting and the user’s hearing ability. It would be rude and inappropriate to blast the volume when sitting in a restaurant or in the middle of a store.
Gone are the days of only being able to hear a loved one’s voice. In 2021, it is possible to hear and see your loved ones all the time because of technology. Technology has improved our lives in more ways than we can fathom. Let’s take advantage of these opportunities and connect with those closest to us.
One of the greatest lessons we learned from 2020 was how to use technology to our advantage. Programs like Facetime and Zoom brought families and friends close together when distance and safety inhibited gatherings. While there is nothing better than physically being next to your loved ones, technology has proven it can help strengthen relationships from afar. However, programs like Facetime and Zoom can be a bit tricky to use. In the next two posts, we will cover 7 ways to improve your special moments with family and friends via Facetime and Zoom. Here are our first four tips to improve call quality:
Use a computer for your Facetime and Zoom calls
One of the best ways to improve your call quality is to use a computer for your Facetime and Zoom calls. When using Facetime and Zoom on a computer, the screen will remain stationary and the speaker on the computer will be conveniently targeted towards the person. Additionally, the screen is typically bigger on a computer, so it will be easier to see the loved one with whom you are speaking—which is what these calls are all about! Click here for step-by-step instructions.
Turning up the brightness on your phone
Turning up the brightness on your phone and moving to a well-lit area will help you see the people with whom you are speaking. These often overlooked and underappreciated adjustments for Facetime and Zoom calls will increase the quality of your call tremendously. There is a level of trust and familiarity that comes with being able to see the person with whom you are speaking.
Using a stand greatly improves Facetime and Zoom calls
In the event a computer is not available, being able to properly prop up your phone or tablet will help improve your calls.Many phone cases come with built-in stands, and tablet cases can be bought where the screen cover converts to a stand. Using a stand greatly improves Facetime and Zoom calls because it stabilizes the camera and lets the user speak more comfortably.
Having your phone or computer approximately two feet away from your face
As people are slowly making their way back to working in the office again, properly using Facetime and Zoom on the go is a must-have skill! It is common to see people holding their phones incredibly close to their face when on a Facetime and Zoom call. However, this is not the best way to have a call! Having your phone or computer approximately two feet away from your face allows for your entire face and torso to be in the frame. Likewise, when you have several people trying to talk to another person, having the phone or tablet extended out about two feet allows for everyone to be in the frame.
The last thing you want to experience when calling your loved one is a shaky and dark video. These four tips will greatly improve the call quality with your loved ones when used simultaneously. Make sure your next Facetime or Zoom call is spent saying “I love you” and not “Hold on… I can’t see you!” Spend less time dealing with technology issues and more time talking with your family.
It’s that time of year again! If you’re struggling for new ideas for what to buy for grandparents or seniors in your life, here are a few fool-proof suggestions sure to please. The best part of these gifts? They are made to be shared with your loved one.
Reading is a lifelong pastime. Books are now available in various print sizes and audiobooks or translated into multiple languages to accommodate all readers. Whether your loved one enjoys fiction, true crime, or history, there are bound to be dozens of titles to interest them. Or find an old favorite that has recently been put back into print.
Another excellent technology for readers is the rise of Kindles or e-Reading programs. While not every senior citizen is adept at technology, an e-Reader is a compact and adaptable device for those with extensive book collections looking to downsize. These devices can hold hundreds of book titles. You could even purchase one and preload it with titles they would enjoy.
Monthly coffee or tea subscriptions
Most adults enjoy spending their mornings with a cup of coffee or tea. There are plenty of subscriptions that specialize in delivering coffees and teas to your loved one’s mailbox every month. Selection choices vary from international selections to specifically curated choices based on the type of subscription service.
Puzzles and games to share as a family
Everyone has a favorite quiet at-home pastime. Puzzles, board games, and card games have risen in popularity recently as affordable and fun family entertainment alternatives. Several favorite games for adults have released family and kid-friendly versions, which would be an excellent way for children to bond and spend time with their grandparents. Or have grandchildren pick out a puzzle for their grandparents that they can complete together, as an activity for them to do together.
One of the most significant challenges seniors face as they downsize to smaller homes or into retirement communities is downsizing their belongings and treasured keepsakes. Fortunately, technology has provided nearly limitless ways for those looking to downsize without tossing our precious mementos. Digital photo albums and frames are more compact and attractive than ever. Many can hold hundreds, if not thousands, of cherished family photos while taking up a fraction of the space. Some services will help digitize and upload home videos as well.
One of the most popular gifts over the past few years, for all ages, has been the rise of ancestry kits. There’s a variety of services and products that specialize in helping your family discover their history. While this is an excellent gift for older family members, it is one that the entire family can benefit from and enjoy.
Grocery delivery subscription
If your loved one is still cooking or preparing their meals, consider a subscription to a grocery delivery service. While many retailers offer special hours for senior citizens to shop, grocery delivery removes transportation burdens. It also gives them the security of getting items delivered to their door in a safe and distanced way.
The pandemic has temporarily changed how generations of families interact with one another. Here are a few fun ways to spend time with loved ones, while observing social distancing guidelines.
Set a routine.
Try to block off a regular check-in time every week or every few days to say hello and discuss life events. If your grandparent is not particularly tech-savvy, this can be a regular phone call, or if they are, a Zoom or FaceTime chat.
Not all seniors are savvy when it comes to digital communications like Facetime and Zoom. Not only are letters more familiar for some, but they also give younger generations a chance to flex their writing and creativity skills. Drawings, handmade cards, and childrens’ arts and crafts projects are a wonderful thing to include if you have children who might be too small to write a letter. And if you have young children, sending and receiving mail is a fun novelty for a generation that has grown up on the internet.
Make a care package.
In addition to mailing letters and cards, put together a package of fun activities for grandparents. Puzzle books, crossword puzzles, card games, or books are a good start. Set up an exchange. One week you mail them a package; the next week, they send something back. And while everyone is encouraged to avoid unnecessary trips to the store, this might be an excellent time to utilize online deliveries or get creative. Putting together an album of old photos or recipe collections is a fun activity to get children involved while everyone is at home. It costs virtually nothing and has a more profound sentimental value for your loved ones.
It’s a date.
Set aside a time to watch a television show or movie simultaneously. This way, you will have something to talk about the next time you check-in. Perhaps start a virtual family book club if you have avid readers at home.
Do your grandparents have a unique skill or hobby they could teach grandchildren over a video call? Maybe your children want to give their grandparents a show-and-tell or talent show over Facetime? Some numerous hobbies and activities can be done virtually with grandparents, from teaching a hobby or skill to finishing homework or sharing a meal.
While they have been around for several years, podcasts have recently become an overwhelmingly popular form of entertainment and information. According to The Podcast Consumer 2018 from Edison Research, 34% of 18- to 34-year-olds, and 36% of 35- to 54-year-olds are monthly listeners. Seniors 55-plus make up 19% of current listeners. A podcast is an online show, structured similarly to radio shows seniors might have grown up enjoying. Like radio, they are entirely audio – no video. They are available on the internet to download for free onto a smartphone or a computer using your web browser. They vary in length, with most running between 30 minutes and one hour. Podcasts cover a wide variety of topics; there is a show dedicated to almost any interest and demographic. Below are a few we recommend for seniors.
Each week, Stephen J. Dubner, co-author of the Freakonomics books, speaks with Nobel laureates, entrepreneurs, intellectuals, and others about socioeconomic issues for a general audience. With over 8 million downloads per month, it is one of the most popular podcasts on Apple Podcast. Topics range from tipping customs to Chinese folklore, to exercise, and in-home DNA testing kits. This podcast, like many others, doesn’t have a chronological order, so feel free to skip around, or pick a topic that interests you and enjoy.
This American Life is a weekly public radio show hosted by Ira Glass. Heard by 2.2 million people, with another 2.5 million people downloading it weekly. The show primarily focuses on journalistic nonfiction and essays, with each episode following a theme. Through interviews and first-person narratives, the diverse topics cover a broad span of moods and tone. The wide variety of these stories will entertain seniors, and inspire them to share them with others, as many reviewers of the podcast have done. In addition to sharing stories, the show also covers current events and how those events affect real people.
Criminal is a podcast about true crime and the people behind the cases. Every story is real. The interviewees are directly involved with the crime in some way or another. Stories of people on both sides of the law. Stories of people caught in the middle and the ones who solve the cases. What’s it like to make counterfeit money? Have you ever had your identity stolen? Who cleans up crime scenes? Each episode is a standalone story, so feel free to skip around and listen to the titles that catch your eye.
Produced by the team at HowStuffWorks, this podcast is ideal for seniors with a keen interest in history. Skipping over well-known events of the past, Stuff You Learned in History class takes a deep dive into the stories left out of the history books. Highlighting social and cultural happenings and highlighting forgotten historical figures around the world, the podcast provides insight into moments of history long forgotten. Because the podcast covers so many historical topics, you can listen by theme or period of time.
Food Network’s Alton Brown chats with a wide array of food industry professionals. Featuring chefs and bartenders, authors, scientists, and everyone in-between, Alton Brown talks about food and how we eat throughout the podcast. It’s perfect for the senior interested in cooking and dining.
Hosted by practicing geriatrics specialist, Leslie Kernisan, MD MPH, this is a podcast for older adults and family caregivers alike. Dr. Kernisan and her guests discuss common health problems that affect seniors, and what works for improving health and wellness while aging. She and her guests also address common concerns and dilemmas that come with caring for aging parents. Medication safety, memory and cognitive health, and managing cardiovascular risks are just a few of the topics covered in this highly informational podcast.
You Must Remember This is a critically acclaimed podcast exploring the forgotten histories of Hollywood’s first century. Proclaimed as the best podcast of 2018 by Entertainment Weekly, the show is written and narrated by former film critic Karina Longworth; it is the ideal show for any senior interested in the golden age of cinema. A heavily-researched work of creative nonfiction, Karina sorts out what happened behind the scenes of the films, stars, and scandals of the 20th century.
If any of these shows appeal to you or someone you might know, or you want to go searching on your own, there are several options for accessing podcasts. If you have a smartphone, there are apps to help you listen and keep you updated on shows you enjoy. If you have an iPhone, there is a podcast app pre-installed. You can also download other apps for listening, like Stitcher. The Google Play Music and Spotify apps are great options for those who want to transition between music and shows.
One last great feature of podcasts is that they can be stopped and started and returned to at a later time. This feature makes them ideal for seniors who enjoy a busy lifestyle or want to enjoy their favorite shows with family and friends.
The current and upcoming generations of retirees seek options to enhance their lifestyle choices. While many would prefer to retire in a home where they have lived for decades, living active and independent lives. New options in retirement planning allow seniors to age in place within a retirement community. These communities feature the independence of home but with the reassurance of additional assistance through each phase of aging. Nearly two in 10 Americans aged 70 and older state that they either cannot, or find it difficult, to live independently and accomplish daily tasks without help.
Activities for Everyone
Modern retirement communities can help older adults help themselves. Senior living communities enable their residents to experience a wide range of lifestyle choices. Research has found that active and healthy seniors in assisted living communities went outside more than those living in their own homes and engaged more with their peers. Many who move into a retirement community realize that they are living more independently. With a wide range of dining options and social engagement programs, seniors discover that independence means more than just living outside of a retirement community.
These living communities have common areas to encourage socialization and plan activities and outings for residents. Others who have no desire to socialize, enjoy private living in a home setting where they can have guests at their leisure.
No More Chores
Aside from keeping up with social engagements, a retirement community often takes the burden out of dangerous chores, or just those that become more difficult as we age. While most active seniors are capable of small chores, such as sweeping or changing a light bulb, a retirement community provides a full staff for larger tasks, such as mowing the lawn, clearing gutters, or appliance maintenance. Another benefit of having an entire team within a retirement community is that as a seniors’ ability to accomplish chores deteriorates, there is always someone on hand to provide all levels of assistance, without the senior leaving their home within the community.
While staying in a home where one has lived for thirty or forty years might be comfortable, as we age, it might not be as safe as it once was. Stairs could become more complicated, narrow hallways cannot accommodate walkers, tile floors are slippery, and shelves might be harder to reach. Making home renovations to accommodate our abilities as we age can become costly and overwhelming. When living in a retirement community, these features are built into every home and public area. They include ramps for exterior stairs, wider doorways to accommodate walkers or wheelchairs, indoor threshold ramps, slip-proof floors, and safety rails. Residents may also choose to install a walk-in shower or bathtub.
How Can We Help?
Cedar Ridge Village offers a high level of service and support for active seniors, those who need a little more assistance, and residents who require a higher level of long-term care. Independent living residents can enjoy a productive and engaging social life while moving at one’s own pace and with full maintenance staff, none of the concerns of traditional homeownership. Our pet-friendly residences feature expansive, light-filled floor plans with full kitchens, in-unit laundry, and complimentary outdoor parking. When residents move into a phase of life that requires more assistance, we offer a higher level of support for those daily activities. We can assist with everything from dressing and bathing to around-the-clock skilled nursing care.
By the time you finish this sentence, three older Americans have fallen. And those falls are dangerous. According to the CDC, an adult 65 years or older falls each second, and that is the number one cause of injuries and death from injury among older Americans. The financial impact of those falls is shocking — $67.7 billion by 2020. CDC Director Tom Frieden said, “Older adult falls are increasing and, sadly, often herald the end of independence.”
Whether your loved one lives independently and is in good health or your loved one is showing signs of slowing down, you need to know what levels of care are available for them. Eventually, they will need extra help. Maybe not tomorrow. Or next week. But maybe in a few years, your mom or dad will start to forget basic things like the day of the week or who the United States’ president is. This is why you need to know what kind of assistance is available.
There are generally four levels of care: independent living, assisted living, short-term rehab, long-term care. Because your loved one’s needs will eventually change, you need to know the answers to questions like “What’s included in assisted living?” and “What does the day of an independent living resident look like?” With this knowledge, you’ll be prepared to help them make the best decisions for their future.
Keep reading to meet June (an independent living resident), John (an assisted living resident), Linda (a short-term rehab resident), and Roger (a long-term care resident).
A Day in the Life — June Wessell, 77 years old
June and her dog, Lady, live in a 1-bedroom apartment inside a senior living community, and her days begin at 7 a.m. After sipping coffee on her small patio, June takes her dog on a walk. During the spring, they walk outside. But if snow is on the ground, they stay indoors. As she passes her neighbors, she often stops to chat about yesterday’s events and the day’s activities. When the two-mile walk is over, June and Lady take a quick break in their apartment before the chapel Bible study at 10 a.m.
At lunch, June sits in her usual seat with her four closest community friends. They reminisce about the good ole days —5¢ Coke drinks and drive-in movies.
At 2 p.m., June listens to a local school’s choir in her community’s event room. Later that afternoon, her two grandchildren visit, and they play their favorite board game Monopoly.
After dinner, June and Lady enjoy reruns of The Andy Griffith Show and I Love Lucy before starting the bedtime routine at 8:30 p.m.
As you can see from June’s story, independent living residents don’t need any assistance with daily activities. They’re able to exercise, cook, and do anything they want to do all on their own. Most independent living communities offer many activities and encourage their residents to maintain an active lifestyle. With minimal housekeeping and no internal or external maintenance responsibilities, independent living residents can maximize their retirement by not being bogged down with the inconvenient tasks of homeownership.
Since these private living spaces are for older adults who don’t require assistance, you’ll find amenities like a washer and dryer, patio, and a full-service kitchen just like you would find in a small apartment.
Also, independent living residents are typically offered:
Restaurant-style lunch & continental breakfast
Emergency response pendant system
Transportation to scheduled activity outings
All-inclusive utilities (except phone)
Washer and dryer
Individually-controlled central heating and cooling system
Complimentary outdoor parking (underground parking is available for an additional fee)
Full kitchen with modern appliances
A Word from a Team Member
Chelsea Freie, the marketing director at Terrace Glen Village, says, “Our independent living residents are full of energy and always involved in community events. Many of them do some of our best marketing work by telling their friends about us because they love living here. Occasionally they’ll need assistance when their television stops working or a light bulb that needs replacing is out of reach. But, for the most part, they live their own lives and have a lot of activities outside of this community.”
To learn about independent living options, call (515) 232-1000 or click here.
A Day in the Life — John Greene, 89
In his 553 sq. ft., 1-bedroom apartment, John begins each day by watching the morning news. Sometimes he forgets where he last placed the remote so when a nurse checks in on him every morning, they help John find it. He eats breakfast in the assisted living dining room and usually eats cheerios, yogurt, or scrambled eggs.
John loves the morning activities so you can typically find him in the activity room making a new knickknack or craft. At lunchtime, a certified medication aide helps John take his diabetes medicines with the appropriate amount of liquids and food. In the afternoon, John rides to his doctor’s apartment via the community bus where he and the bus driver usually have the same conversation each trip.
Throughout the day, John keeps his emergency response pendant system around his neck in case he needs immediate help because he does struggle with dementia. While he’s out of his apartment, community team members go into his apartment and wash his clothes, replace the linens, and clean and dust. John needs assistance bathing and dressing so a nurse always helps him take care of those needs.
Assisted living residents need some help with daily activities like bathing, dressing, and taking the right medications at the right times. Although these residents are given more assistance than independent living residents, they’re still encouraged to be as independent as possible.
Most communities offer the following amenities for assisted living residents:
Spacious 1- or 2-bedroom apartments
Three restaurant-style meals
Emergency response pendant system
Wellness checks and a service plan supervised by a registered nurse
Kitchenette with a refrigerator and a microwave
Transportation to scheduled activity outings and appointments
All-inclusive utilities ( (except phone)
Weekly housekeeping, laundry, and linen services
Individually-controlled central heating and cooling system
Complimentary outdoor parking (underground parking is available for an additional fee)
A Word from a Team Member
Jill Lamb, the marketing director at Colonial Village, says, “Some of our most active residents live in the assisted living part of our campus. Just because they need help with a few tasks doesn’t mean they aren’t active and engaged. If you’re thinking about moving your loved one into an assisted living community, don’t think you would be limiting their independence. In an assisted living community, they have more independence with a team member’s help, and they can enjoy life more.”
To learn about assisted living options, call (515) 232-1000 or click here.
A Day in the Life — Linda Blackburn, 58
Linda lives in a three-story house with her husband of 31 years, but she fell and broke her leg while walking down the front porch steps on an icy day. So after successful surgery, Linda was transferred to a rehabilitation facility in hopes to return home within a few weeks. At this facility, Linda works through physical therapy each day with a licensed physical therapist. She receives three daily meals and is visited by the community medical doctor each week.
Since this facility is Medicare-approved and certified, Linda will only pay for her stay after the 20th day (as long as she is making progress). After five weeks of slow and steady improvement, Linda returned home.
While the above example is very specific, short-term rehabilitation offers other kinds of therapy like occupational and speech therapy. Each therapist works with the patient on their specific needs and goals because everyone’s rehab situation is different.
Most communities offer the following amenities for short-term rehab residents:
Judy Baxter, the marketing director at Westchester Village of Lenexa, says, “I’m so thankful our community offers short-term rehabilitation because I am inspired by those who work hard in their therapy to eventually return home. The nice thing about a continuing care retirement community where short-term rehab is included is that an independent living resident who might fall and break a bone can receive rehab right down the hall — they don’t have to worry about moving to a new community because it’s all under one roof.”
To learn about short-term rehab options, call (515) 232-1000 or click here.
A Day in the Life — Roger Hutchins, 84
Roger’s stroke made daily tasks like showering, trips to the restroom, eating, and changing clothes especially difficult. His stroke also worsened his Alzheimer’s symptoms. So Roger’s family moved him to a long-term care facility where the staff could give him 24-hour skilled nursing care. Each day, Roger uses their help to eat, bathe, and change clothes.
His favorite part of the day is the afternoon walk in the courtyard. A nurse will help Roger transfer to a wheelchair, and Roger is pushed through the courtyard for about 20 minutes. The facility does a great job scheduling events for their long-term care residents, and Roger enjoys those events every day before dinner. He especially loves listening to the local elementary school choir sing holiday songs each December.
Long-term care is for those who are unable to perform daily activities on their own like eating, bathing, dressing, etc. Ultimately, the purpose of long-term care is to help the resident maintain their lifestyle as they age. Medicare usually does not cover long-term care costs.
Most communities offer the following amenities for long-term care residents:
Summer English, the marketing director at Northridge Village, says, “Even though our long-term care residents need a lot of assistance in their daily lives, they still share so much joy. They teach me each day how to enjoy life to the fullest.”
To learn about long-term care options, call (515) 232-1000 or click here.
Thanksgiving is a time for families to gather and share a meal, to reminisce about old memories and make new ones. However, when a loved one is diagnosed with dementia, such as Alzheimer’s, some past family traditions might cause anxiety and confusion for a loved one, not to mention the additional stress put on a caregiver. Here are some tips to make your holiday celebrations more enjoyable for your loved one, as well as the entire family.
1. Arrange A Quiet Space
Your loved one with dementia can become easily confused and anxious with a crowded space and relatives that may now be unfamiliar to them. Make sure they have a quiet space away from the holiday commotion if they become overwhelmed or exhausted with the day’s activities. If possible, try to host your holiday in a familiar home and reduce travel. Ask that family members come to the home of your loved one or their caregivers. If your loved one resides in a long-term care facility, consider bringing a bit of Thanksgiving to them, instead of checking them out to travel to a relative’s home that they may not be entirely familiar with.
2. Involve Friends & Family
You might have guests in the home who are not aware of the current situation with a family member with Alzheimer’s. It’s important to make everyone who will be joining you for the day aware of your loved one’s condition and status, especially if it is a new diagnosis or their condition has progressed greatly since the last time everyone was together. The added stress of planning Thanksgiving festivities can take a toll on a caregiver. Take advantage of the additional family members in the home for the holiday. Delegate tasks, like cooking or setting up for the meal to other family members to lighten your workload. Or come up with activities for family members to participate in with your loved one with dementia, so the sole responsibility of looking after them doesn’t fall entirely on the shoulders of one person for the day.
3. Celebrate Earlier in the Day
As the day transitions from afternoon to evening, it can have negative effects on those living with dementia. This is known as Sundown syndrome, which can manifest itself in a variety of behaviors, like anger or confusion. One way to reduce its effect on your day is to schedule your primary Thanksgiving meal earlier in the day. If you’ve always celebrated at dinner time, consider moving your holiday meal to lunch or brunch. Not only will this reduce added stress for your loved one, it might even create a new holiday meal tradition.
4. Find Ways to Engage Your Loved One with Dementia
Depending on their mental capacity and physical ability, find small tasks for them to focus on throughout the day. There is much to be done when preparing a large family meal, and there should be some small task for everyone, including your loved one. Can they stir the potatoes? Set the table? Keeping them busy with a familiar task can help calm them down and distract from the unfamiliar aspects of the day. If the usual Thanksgiving preparation tasks aren’t possible for your loved one, establish new traditions that will make them comfortable or reduce their stress level. Have everyone share memories from past holidays, engaging your loved one about what they remember from growing up, or previous celebrations. Look at old photo albums and ask them questions about the past. It’s important to remember to be an active and engaged listener in these situations. Do not interrupt or correct them if they don’t remember the exact version of past events or repeat themselves.
5. Forget the Pressure of the Perfect Holiday
Maybe Thanksgiving this year doesn’t look like it always has, but that’s okay. Your family might not look like it always has either. Instead of focusing on what is different about this year, or how you might be moving away from past traditions, focus on the new traditions you can create.
Traditions and delicious food aside, what Thanksgiving truly comes down to is gratitude and spending time with family and friends, which can be accomplished a variety of ways. It’s important for family to celebrate and not focus on what might have been lost, but instead to celebrate what remains, and remain optimistic about what is to come. If you or someone you know finds themselves struggling with the holiday and caring for a loved one, the Alzheimer’s Association has a helpline that is staffed by clinicians all day, every day (yes, even on Thanksgiving) who can offer support. The number is 800-272-3900.
Every year more and more people are registering their cats, dogs, bunnies, and hamsters as therapy animals! All of these animals make great companions and provide years of support and comfort. But for some people, these animals are too common—people like different. Take a look at some of the most…
In 2021, video calls are necessary for staying in touch with family and friends. That’s why it is so important that each call has the best possible quality. Following last month’s article, here are 3 more tips to improve your video calls: limit the number of people on your call,…
One of the greatest lessons we learned from 2020 was how to use technology to our advantage. Programs like Facetime and Zoom brought families and friends close together when distance and safety inhibited gatherings. While there is nothing better than physically being next to your loved ones, technology has proven…
Angela Klein is the new Human Resources Manager of Cedar Ridge Village. Angela has her bachelor’s degree from the University or Northern Iowa in Psychology and Gerontology. When Angela is not at work, she enjoys shopping, traveling with her family, and being outdoors. She is excited to put together a…
It’s that time of year again! If you’re struggling for new ideas for what to buy for grandparents or seniors in your life, here are a few fool-proof suggestions sure to please. The best part of these gifts? They are made to be shared with your loved one. Books…
Malinda Shultice is the new Executive Director of Cedar Ridge Village. Malinda has her master’s degree from Drake University and is currently going to school to obtain her doctorate degree in healthcare administration. She has a daughter named Berlin that always keeps her on her toes. Her favorite author is…
The pandemic has temporarily changed how generations of families interact with one another. Here are a few fun ways to spend time with loved ones, while observing social distancing guidelines. Set a routine. Try to block off a regular check-in time every week or every few days to say hello…
For adult children and loved ones, facing the changes dementia and Alzheimer’s presents can be devastating. Abrupt changes in mood, odd behavior, and the loss of precious memories can be challenging to watch. You might be unsure how to interact with your loved one. Here are some things to consider…
Every year more and more people are registering their cats, dogs, bunnies, and hamsters as therapy animals! All of these animals make great companions and provide years of support and comfort. But for some people, these animals are too common—people like different. Take a look at some of the most unusual therapy animals! 1. Chinchillas
In 2021, video calls are necessary for staying in touch with family and friends. That’s why it is so important that each call has the best possible quality. Following last month’s article, here are 3 more tips to improve your video calls: limit the number of people on your call, turn the volume up, and
One of the greatest lessons we learned from 2020 was how to use technology to our advantage. Programs like Facetime and Zoom brought families and friends close together when distance and safety inhibited gatherings. While there is nothing better than physically being next to your loved ones, technology has proven it can help strengthen relationships
Angela Klein is the new Human Resources Manager of Cedar Ridge Village. Angela has her bachelor’s degree from the University or Northern Iowa in Psychology and Gerontology. When Angela is not at work, she enjoys shopping, traveling with her family, and being outdoors. She is excited to put together a great staffing team and get
It’s that time of year again! If you’re struggling for new ideas for what to buy for grandparents or seniors in your life, here are a few fool-proof suggestions sure to please. The best part of these gifts? They are made to be shared with your loved one. Books Reading is a lifelong pastime.
Malinda Shultice is the new Executive Director of Cedar Ridge Village. Malinda has her master’s degree from Drake University and is currently going to school to obtain her doctorate degree in healthcare administration. She has a daughter named Berlin that always keeps her on her toes. Her favorite author is Edith Wharton and favorite book