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Showing posts from March, 2011

One minute to a better mind

Check out this very short video and see if you can include the idea into your programming with your independent living residents. It might make a difference to one senior's brain !   Also, please read the post on this blog entitled Brain Fitness Training for Seniors.

Stop and Say Hi

You get what you give! Don’t you find that when you smile while walking through the lobby in your retirement community that most of the time someone will smile back at you? How about when you say, “have a nice day”?  Most people respond with thanks, some to you, or something like that.  I know that it makes me feel good if someone wishes me a good day, just as I’m sure that it makes them feel good when I say it to them.  A simple hi or “hello ladies” goes a long way when you are passing a group of residents. To acknowledge their presence for some gives them a lot of pleasure, which as active, productive adults, we can not fully understand.  Yes, it might seem like a standard line to say, but I really believe that taking a few minutes  to greet a resident is a win, win situation for you and the residents in your community. Of course, if time allows stop and talk! That is usually another win, win situation. The things that I have learned from residents over the past 24  years is pricel

Office Organization

How do you keep all the little details of your job in order so that you can be successful? If I heard it once, I heard it a million times. Our job as Activities Director is so diverse and has so many details that you must be well organized. I’d like to think that I have a good system,  and I’m sure that what works for me, may not work for you. Below is the outline of how I handle my office. If you have a successful method, I’d love to hear from you. Take what does work for you from this article and and make your life at work easier. That is what this blog is all about! I use a four part system to schedule my work life and to keep track of everything. The first and most important item is my calendar book. Up until this year, I’ve used a Daytimer calendar , but this year, I’m using Franklin Covey. I don’t see much difference at all. I have a section for the months that is spread over two pages per month, and then the weekly calendar , which does the same.  I use the monthly calendar

Volunteer Appreciation Party Ideas

Each year we have a volunteer appreciation program to thank the residents who have served the community within the past year. I try to change it each time so that it is interesting to those who have attend year after year. I have created a slide show of all the volunteers doing their job, had the residents stand up at their table and say their name and their volunteer duty, and had many different themes for the event. I think that sharing the different volunteer areas is a good idea because some people in the room are looking around at the fellow guests and thinking to themselves, "What is she doing here? She doesn't volunteer!" Funny, and most likely true in your community also. Since I am working on the details of this year's appreciation lunch, I thought that I'd share it with you and also share what other fun ideas we've done in the past. Hopefully the ideas will help you and that you will share your thoughts with us on this blog so that we can all lear

Puzzels Population Popping

Seems like there is always someone at our puzzle table. Right now in my community there are about half a dozen people who like to work on them on a regular basis. The puzzle table sits in my main lobby, off to the side. I think there are people who enjoy seeing their progress and the final product, so it brings joy to more than those few residents who work on it. I leave the puzzles in a closet in one of our activity rooms so that they can go in and get what they want. At one point they were organized by size. A while ago, I had a puzzle-maker who was making a note on the box when they were completed, so that they would not bring that box to the lobby to work on. But now, I have no idea how they determine what they've finished already and what they want to work on next. Our retirement community gets donations of puzzles from our residents, their families and from the outside community. With two "sister-communities" in the area, we swap puzzles too. But still..... I ha

Party on our Side of the Pond

You can not turn on the t.v. or pick up a magazine without seeing a story about Prince William and Kate Middleton's royal wedding . If it is anything like Charles and Diana's wedding, it will be a fairytale and will be a sight to see. I know that the residents in my community are looking forward to watching it. I am planning to have an event around this special day. We will have special brunch in our Auditorium where the residents will be able to watch the broadcast. It will be a fancy event. Residents will be invited to come wearing their best hat and attire. The menu will include favorites from across the pond and U.S. favorites too. I will have the computer set up so that those who want to sign into the official guest book for the wedding can do so, and feel a part of the really big viewing guest list that will be watching from around the world. Are you hosting a party at our place? If so, please take a moment to share your ideas. In case you don't know, the weddin