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Showing posts from January, 2012

Seniors and E-Readers

A few months ago, I got a Kindle for my birthday and it is awesome! I am reading more now than I ever use to. I started asking the residents at my retirement community what they suggested I read next. When I explained that I just got a Kindle, I began to learn from my "readers" who else had a Kindle or E-Reader. I found that my e-readers are like a quiet cult in the community. They all know who has what device and have sent many of their "members" into my office to share in the excitement of my new discovery. They were thrilled to be able to help me and to make suggestions to a "newbie." I never thought that I would be getting lessons from the residents on technology, but I received a couple of very good pointers.
The other day, I had a resident come to me and ask about our community's wireless Internet access. I discovered that he was trying to get started on his new Kindle and did not have wireless in his apartment. It was such a thrill to be able …

Cruise Escort's Emergency Guide

In light of the recent Costa Concordia cruise ship accident last week, I was thinking, "what if I was on board escorting a group of residents and such a tragedy struck?" I have been so lucky in my career as activities director the past two decades to escort residents from my retirement community on plenty of cruises and this has never crossed my mind. I will say that I've thought about a fire on board, but not a ship taking on water or listing on its side.
There are certain procedures that I like to follow when I am escorting residents on an overnight trip. Before leaving our community, I ask the resident to complete a medical information form. This form covers what medicines the resident is currently taking, if they have any medical conditions that an emergency doctor would need to know about, and their emergency contact information. I keep this information with me while I am on the trip. Our community nursing department has all this information, but I feel better know…

Super Bowl Party for Seniors

It is almost here! The 46th Super Bowl game will be held on Sunday, February 5 in Indinapolis. Each year, residents in my retirement community want to have a viewing party for the big game. I believe that it is a fun program to make an activity out of, but not something that I must do every year. Mostly, I don't have this each year because there are not to many ways to change it up, so I don't want to have it become boring. (This is where your ideas would be great to hear!!)
This year, we are going to have a party and I'd like to share with you the plans for the evening. Residents are now signing up for the program which is set to start at 6:00 p.m.  This time is perfect in my community because we still serve dinner at noon on Sundays and the residents usually like to attend for the food, if for no other reason. (I do charge them a fee for the food.) We will have the game showing on our big screen tv in the auditorium and tables and chairs set up for the residents to eat an…

Unique Holidays to Celebrate

Now that the craziness of the holidays are behind you as Activities Director in your retirement community, it is time to start thinking ahead. How will you make 2012 special for the seniors that live in your community?
One of the ideas that my company mandates is to have special theme nights at least 6 times a year. To me, that is perfect because it takes about that long to get everything organized for a theme party. Take a look at my postings on this blog about theme parties for some new ideas. I would love to hear what you are doing too, so please feel free to comment below so that we can all learn from one another. After being an activities director for 24 years, it is always nice to find some new ideas and I use the web a lot.
This year I am doing some of the "old time favorites," such as Chinese New Year, Mardi Gras, Safari. etc. But, I am also adding in a few new ideas to my list! The new ones  that I will be doing are "A Night in Havana" and "Old Holl…

Good Public Relations for Retirement Community

Having Wii in my community has been an awesome PR item - especially since the team rocks, with the help of the Wii Bowler of the Year as the captain! Read the stories below:
Also, check out my other articles on this blog about Wii Bowling.

Organizing Notes

As I was putting away my active files from 2011, I ran across notes that I had made on scrap paper that were important to save. These were ideas that I had made for theme nights, a new resident welcome party and other activities in my retirement community. As I filed away the obvious items, I was left with these odd pieces of papers and really did not have the time, or the desire, to type them, so that I could save them on my computer (as I mentioned in my first post). I put them aside for a few days and then realized that I had a scanner and could use it instead. (Think about that commercial for the neat desk organizer they are promoting these days.)

Once I scanned my scraps of paper, I was able to file them into the categories that I have created on my computer. I know that the next time I plan my program, I will go to that file on my computer first. I like to have things on the computer instead of in a file cabinet. I don't know about you, but when things are messy, I can not w…