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Home Notes

February 10, 2011

Home Notes: Balloon volleyball is a blast


“Sport is a preserver of health.” _ Hippocrates The history of volleyball dates back to 1895 when William G. Morgan, a YMCA physical education director created a game called “Mintonette.”

Though similar to tennis and handball, it was designed to be less rough than basketball, but still to be a fun and athletic sport. However, while watching the game, one of the spectators stated that there was a lot of “volleying” during the game. Thus, the name was changed to volleyball.

Recently my husband and I attended our daughter, Elle’s, J.V. volleyball game at Cooperstown Central School. It was while watching and rooting for her team that I thought “What a fun sport, if only the residents and staff could play volleyball, but the ball is so hard. What if we replaced the volleyball with a balloon?’’

With the assistance of Frank Miller, our facilities manager, a volleyball net was set up in the activities room, chairs were placed strategically and teams were assembled.

Art Laidlaw, Maureen Micek, Laura Black, Laurie Blatt, and Pat DeBaun were team, “Velvet Frogs”, while Bunny Laidlaw, Ellen Hankin, Carol Affourtit, Kathy Lindberg, Frank Rollins and Shelia Jones were team, “Raising Hares.’’

Assigning myself as referee, I blew the whistle signaling the start of the game. The balloon was served, double quicks, cut shots, jousts, line shots and back row attacks ensued.

Three out of five games determined the winning team: “Velvet Frog !”

“We didn’t lose the game; we just ran out of time.’’ _ Vince Lombardi At our Eden home we serve each other and work as a team to create meaning and joy in each others’ lives.

Adaptability, imagination and patience are essential to alleviating boredom, loneliness and helplessness. Many of our staff provide one-on-one and spontaneous group activities.

Nancy Rackmyer, LPN, offered residents a viewing of the PBS documentary, by Ken Burns, “Lewis and Clark.’’ Eight residents took comfortable seats in our library and with fresh, buttery popcorn, cool drinks and an extra-large screen television, the lights were dimmed and the film was shown.

As an activity director, I am always searching for new and interesting programs, games,  information and with the NewYear upon us I learned that the Chinese New Year will be celebrated on February 3rd this year. This knowledge, in turn, prompted me to look up the Chinese Zodiacs of our residents and staff. This year, 2011, is being celebrated  as the “Year of the Rabbit’’ inChina. I found the following stats.

We have three Monkeys,  four Sheep, Dragons andRoosters, five Oxen, Pigs and Snakes, seven Dogs, eight Tigers, nine Horses and in honor of the Year of the Rabbit, five Rabbits who include PCA Alex Melniczenko and residents Doris Blomquist, Fannie Navarra, Art Laidlaw and ironically enough, his wife Natalie Laidlaw, whom he affectionately nicknamed “Bunny.’’ Here’s to all you Rabbits!

And last, but not least, we have one Rat, who just happens to be our wonderful cook, Darcey Schilling!

“A lot of people, they get all caught up in the New Year’s resolution thing and I think it gives them an easy way, later, to say, ‘Oh, that was just a New Year’s resolution’ and not take it seriously. People who really want to make changes  can make them any day ofthe year, whether it be the  Jewish New Year, the ChineseNew Year or any day that suits them. You’ve got every day of your life to make changes.’’ _ Dr. James Wilcox.

In concluding our month of January, we decided to celebrate with a Chinese meal.

Our local Chinese restaurant, Foo Kin John, provided us with a delicious menu of wonton soup, spring rolls, beef with broccoli, chicken with vegetables and white rice.

Our sweet tooths were satisfied with vanilla ice cream and of course, fortune cookies!

After reading our future predictions, we retired to our spacious living room where LPN Mary Butler’s brother, David Kircher, gave a talk and slideshow of his bicycle trip through Lao, or Laos.

Unity in the exploration of new challenges brings people together as a team, resulting in positive outcomes.

Be it in a physical challenge such as balloon volleyball, an educational documentary or a change in menu to Chinese, our Eden Home provides each resident  with physical, mental andsocial events which energize and engage us in each others’ lives. Whether you choose to be part of the team or part of the cheering squad, we are all working toward a winning game, which by the way, Cooperstown won!

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Home Notes
  • April activities fool many as spring comes, goes There were many April fool jokes played here at Clara Welch Thanksgiving Home on April 1. Some of us found our door name plates turned upside down or swapped with one from another door and furniture and objects were mysteriously moved around in our rooms. The dining room was completely transformed from its usual formal setting into a hodpodge of mismatched china and … horrors, plastic tablecloths and paper napkins. Each table was decorated with a different theme, Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Easter. Christmas carols played in the background. We suspect that Dee Bouck, of Personal Care and John Santello, Activities Director, were mainly responsible for this mayhem.

    April 24, 2014

  • Pete Rose on deck for TLC The man known to legions of baseball fans as Charlie Hustle still isn't being considered for induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

    January 3, 2013

  • Holiday celebrations have begun We have decked the halls of the home with garland, the greenhouses delivered a magnificent wreath for the door and the largest poinsettias we've ever seen, with pristine white cyclamen to accent the tables.

    December 20, 2012

  • Home welcomes new residents We honored our residents who are veterans on Veterans Day, including Alberta Bowes, Bill Bowes, Janet Gorman, Art Laidlaw, Wally Pickhardt, Ralph Veenema and Grace Welsh. It is wonderful to have so many residents who served our country.

    November 21, 2012

  • Summer has been busy at the home

    In the spring we held a workshop to create a shared vision of a summer program that would provide meaningful and enriching experiences. Residents and staff partnered to brainstorm creative ideas, then a planning committee of  residents and staff worked out the details to organize and schedule the events from June through August. We’ve had many enjoyable and actionpacked days, and our journey will continue in August.

    August 30, 2012

  • Home Notes: Celebrations abound at the Thanksgiving Home

    April was a month of celebrations and much to appreciate. We had a 90th birthday celebration for Wanda Noyes on April 4 including her family and friends.  Personal care staff Dee Bouck worked with residents to hand paint Easter eggs for the tree in the activity room.

    May 11, 2012

  • Home Notes: Workshops held for Thanksgiving Home residents

    We welcomed Linda Keller, Ph.D. of the Bassett Research Institute and Ida Baker of NYCAMH who presented a six-week workshop for residents and staff.

    March 9, 2012

  • Home Notes: Residents enjoy harvest dinner

    The month of October was absolutely GOURD-geous at The Thanksgiving Home. We started off the month with a beautiful and festive harvest dinner for both staff and residents. As one big family, we sat around warm plates of turkey, fluffy mashed potatoes, delicious corn casserole and fresh rolls.

    November 10, 2011

  • Home Notes: Many surprises, much fun in September

    “Rainbows apologize for angry skies.” -- Sylvia Voirol
    The month of September began on a damp note at the home. The rains of  Hurricane Irene, flooded basements andwashed out roadways making it impossible for some staff to get to work during their scheduled times. Thank you to all who helped cover for each other during the rains!

    October 14, 2011

  • Home Notes: August is opera season

    “Like a welcome summer rain, humor may suddenly cleanse and cool the earth, the air and you.” - Langston Hughes There is a never a shortage of humor at the  Thanksgiving Home, andAugust was no different.

    September 15, 2011