Larry moved to Wesley Ridge in May 2013. Although Larry’s 6th grade art class was the only experience he had, he decided to give the art program at Wesley Ridge a shot in 2014. Since joining, he has created more than 70 exceptional pieces of artwork! …
Summer is here in central Ohio, and we are all spending a bit more time outdoors. I’m sure you are looking for fun, safe, and active adventures to do with your loved ones. The summer time is the perfect opportunity to create memories that will last a lifetime! But, what will you do this summer? Not to worry, our list includes fun adventures right here in central Ohio. Whether you’re age 5 or 65, check out our ultimate summer bucket list!
Our Wesley Ridge resident, Dr. John Kirker has some definite ideas on the key to a long and happy life. And at 97, he’s an expert on the topic. Read his tips here!
Amy Shaffer, marketing coordinator at Wesley Ridge, explains her experiences with end of life decisions. Take a moment to read her tips for discussing advance directives and end of life decisions with your partner, your parents and your closest friends.
As The Wesley Communities approach 50 years of excellent service, our CEO Peg Carmany offers “Peg’s Perspective” on a variety of topics affecting seniors and their adult children as they plan and choose to age well – 50 tips to celebrate 50 years!
Tip # 1 of 50 – What’s the key to a long, healthy, and happy life?
Answers from an interview with Joe and Millie Anderson — people who know how it’s done!
By: Kayla Statema
I’m sure you have heard the saying, ‘April showers bring May flowers.’ And, even as we grow and change as a company, the weather at our communities in central Ohio continues to prove this quote true. But, this short phrase is so much more meaningful than just getting through Columbus, Ohio weather!
People often look back on this quote when battling a rough patch in life. Sometimes it can be hard to see the positive that can come out of a tough time, but it’s important to keep a few things in mind when facing a challenging situation.
- Let go of guilt and forgive
When you and your family are facing a tough time, it is important to understand that everyone will not quite be themselves. Little things that you would brush off before, may now make you upset. And, the same is true for your family and friends who are facing difficulties. You are not to blame for this, and neither are your friends and family. You all must learn to let go of guilt when you act out of character. And, you must forgive when someone you love acts out of character. If you cannot let go of guilt and find forgiveness, it will start a cycle of anger between you and your family, your friends, as well as yourself.
- Allow others to help
It’s important to allow others to help. You may not be able to take on as much as you used to at work or at home. During a difficult time, it is important to be open and honest about what you are going through. And, if someone offers a helping hand allow them to assist you. During this time someone cutting your lawn or picking up a shift at work can make a world of a difference in your wellbeing.
- Notice positive gestures
When you are going through a hard time it’s easy to be angry at the world. So, during this difficult time challenge yourself to look at the world in a different light. Thank the person who held the door open for you. Embrace the person who picked up the tab for your morning coffee. And, thank your spouse who stopped by the grocery store to pick up the milk you needed. Noticing these small gestures can make a difference on your overall attitude. If you are finding it difficult to notice these positive gestures, try starting a gratitude journal. Then, before you go to bed each night, note the things that happened that day which you are grateful for.
- Be kind to yourself
You’ve probably heard this before, but it’s so important. Take time for yourself during tough times. A tough situation can take up a lot of your free time so, it’s important to make the most of every minute. Go for a walk to get fresh air. Take a hot bath with aroma therapy to relax. Or, if you have a bit more time, schedule a massage or a day trip. This may help to balance out the emotions you are feeling.
We know it can be hard to keep in hindsight, but always remember—April showers bring May flowers. As people, we will always change, hit rough patches and face challenges. But ultimately, a move to a new city, may bring us closer to new friendships. The passing of a loved one may allow you to be more understanding and compassionate in the future. And, no matter what the scenario, one day you may be able to help others going through a similar situation.
By: Peg Carmany
I first began to work in senior housing in 2002, and it’s remarkable to me how fast those 15 years have flown by. As I look back, I think my biggest misconception at the beginning was that I was here to help them. In reality, they have given me invaluable gifts of knowledge and friendship.
Here are but a few of the things I have learned from my residents over the years:
- Adversity does not have to define you. If you get a chance to live into your 80s (or 90s) (or 100s!), life will definitely throw you some curve balls. Poor health. Unexpected loss of a loved one. Financial troubles. You name it. And at some point (and I’m not entirely sure at what age, but it will happen), you grieve, you adjust, and then you accept that everyone is carrying around something that is burdensome.
- Once you realize #1, you are kinder to others as a result.
- Gratitude is important. It sounds trite, “Count your blessings.” But it is not trite, it is important. Almost always, there is something, oftentimes more than one thing, to truly be grateful for, and to acknowledge.
- If you become a good listener, most people will think you’re a terrific conversationalist.
- Life is short, and it goes by quickly, and none of us are getting out of here alive. Don’t waste a day lost in meaningless details. Know that “This too shall pass,” eventually.
Now in 2018, I continue to remind myself how much our residents have helped me grow as a human being. I am better at handling the curveballs that life throws my way, whether it’s at home or at work and I strive, every day, to express my gratitude in a variety of ways. But most importantly, I truly enjoy spending time with the people who have taught me so much. There’s always room to grow.
After a long day of work, you come home and want a quick, healthy snack. But, cookies, chips and soda are all the foods that come to mind first. Sound familiar? At Wesley Woods at New Albany, we try to have healthy snacks premade, and ready to take on the go, should our residents, staff or family members need a quick treat. One of our chef’s, James Bline, favorite recipes is Winter Farro Grain Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette. This serves as a great snack or side dish during the wintery months, and it can be made in advance and stored in your refrigerator. Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 butternut squash peeled seeds removed then diced
- 4 parsnips peeled and diced
- 4 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 4 tablespoons butter separated
- 3 cups farro grain
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 large shallot minced
- 4 cup chicken stock
- 3 cups finely shredded kale
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons cranberry juice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Toss butternut squash in olive oil season with salt and pepper and roast in oven for 15-20 minutes or until tender.
- Toss parsnips in olive oil, season with salt and pepper, roast in oven for 15-20 min or until tender. Cool.
- Heat a pan over medium heat with 2 tablespoons butter, sauté shallots and garlic.
- Add farro grain and lightly toast.
- Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Turn heat to low and simmer for about 40 minutes or until tender. Cool.
- Heat a pan over medium heat with 2 tablespoons butter, sauté kale until wilted.
- When all ingredients have cooled, toss all together.
- In a small bowl mix cranberry juice, balsamic vinaigrette, salt and pepper. While whisking slowly add the olive oil.
- Toss vinaigrette with the salad mixture and transfer to a serving dish.
What are your favorite healthy winter weather snacks?
By: Peg Carmany
When someone you love is diagnosed with a life limiting illness, it may be a time when the kaleidoscope of your life suddenly snaps into focus. Or it may be a time when the laser focus of your life becomes scattered. And very likely, there will be some of both. Of the research I have done, and the practical tips I can share from my own experience, these are my favorite pieces of advice:
1. Remember there is no right answer on how you’re supposed to act, and you should not assume that you are supposed to know exactly what to do and exactly how to act. It’s OK to fall apart, but one word of caution about that: try not to let the person who is ill be your primary source of comfort when you do hit a wall.
2. When trying to follow Tip 1, remember that your established role with this loved one doesn’t necessarily switch at the moment of diagnosis. Perhaps only one of you has ever been good under stress? It’s okay to keep it that way. Both of you may take great comfort in continuing on with familiar patterns.
3. Make it a priority to show your love as your loved one is facing what may be overwhelming and scary. It’s not all roses and chocolates – be authentic, be honest, and be yourself. Express gratitude to them for how they have positively impacted your life – and share happy memories – and don’t be afraid to say goodbye, tenderly.
4. Respect their authority to make their own decisions, whether you like it or not. These are their choices, not yours.
5. Keep things as normal as possible. Continue watching your favorite tv shows together or listening to their favorite music, it can be a very meaningful thing.
6. Laugh when you can, and don’t be afraid to poke a little fun at the whole situation. A sense of humor will lighten any mood!
7. And perhaps most importantly: listen, and give advice only when asked. This one can be the most challenging. Often, we are great talkers, but not the best listeners.
Remember, your loved one needs your emotional support. If you are feeling overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Often family and friends who live near by are more than willing to help with errands. And, if you need further support, Wesley Hospice can visit your home, the community you live in, and even hospitals.
We send our deepest condolences to the families who are faced with a loved one being diagnosed with a life limiting illness. And, we hope that with these tips you’ll be able to better love your loved one during this time.