It's the day before Christmas at the Verandah, and few of its residents are nestled all snug in their beds, according to Ginger Patton, Community Development Director.
"Of course it's possible that some of our residents might be powering up with a nap," said Patton. "This month we've been entertained by the Liberty Bells and Celebration Ringers Hand Bell Choir, our residents decorated Christmas trees on each wing, decorated apartment doors, sang along with Virgil and Steve, had an ugly sweater contest and enjoyed our festive Christmas party. We've enjoyed sipping hot apple cider around the firepit and relished a scrumptious Christmas brunch. We all have the holiday spirit."
The Verandah is not your grandparents' old folks home. It offers all-inclusive independent, assisted and memory care housing (three separate neighborhoods on a single, interconnected campus) for seniors who are 55 and older, and peace of mind for the friends and family of residents who call it home.
"We put the "community" in senior living community," Patton said, "encouraging families and the general public to mingle and socialize with residents and one another – which is what the holiday spirit is really about."
Not only does the Verandah lifestyle enable families to relax and enjoy the holidays together without the worry of planning, cooking and cleanup, The Verandah also provides a variety of organized and planned activities to help seniors avoid isolation in every season, and almost all of these activities are family-friendly, welcoming loved ones of all ages for festivities, food and fun.
"Inclement weather can keep people indoors, which puts seniors at a greater risk of becoming depressed, isolated or lonely," Patton said. "In fact, isolation and loneliness have been associated with increased mortality in seniors. We do realize some people enjoy their own company and prefer to keep to themselves. However, we get to know our residents and their personalities. We keep our eyes on each one year round, and especially during the winter and the holidays."
Making The Verandah home sooner rather than later will not halt the aging process, but it does give residents the opportunity to live a more engaged lifestyle in a safe, secure and attractive environment.
The Verandah, managed by Sunshine Retirement Living, does things a little differently. Staff-to-resident ratio is higher. Opportunities for engaging physically, spiritually, mentally and socially are many, from morning chair exercises to painting classes, book club to Bourre and the gospel to gardening. Chef prepared meals, housekeeping and transportation to certain events and for doctor's visits are provided. Grounds, homes and apartments are expertly designed, and the memory care facility is state of the art. Amenities include a fitness center, heated swimming pool, movie theater, hair and nail salon and dining rooms that can be reserved for special events.
Independent living is just like living at home, but without the hassle of yard work, pool care, cooking, cleaning and home maintenance. Plus, the Verandah offers activities onsite and off for residents.
Assisted living apartments offer a resident-centered approach and professional and caring staff that is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Individual service plans include: personal hygiene and grooming, dressing and clothes selection, showering and bathing assistance, meal assistance, incontinence management, mobility support, socialization and medication assistance. Assisted living residents enjoy the same services and amenities found as the independent living residents, such as a delicious dining program as well as engaging activities that allow for enrichment and a strong sense of belonging.
The new Memory Care Neighborhood features an active living program with specially trained care professionals offering gentle touches and calming interactions and providing reassurances throughout the day to enhance caregiver-resident bonds, increase a sense of security and decrease agitation. The caring staff also encourages self-sufficiency by engaging the residents in daily activities to help stimulate memories of past daily activities. The Memory Care Neighborhood also offers many advanced services, which medical research has shown to benefit people with dementia, Alzheimer's and other memory-related diseases.
Additional amenities include: indoor and outdoor life skills stations that replicate purposeful daily living activities, such as work, hobbies, cooking and gardening; music, aromatherapy and pet therapy programs that have been proven to help improve memory function and concentration, improve sleep and decrease agitation; state-of-the-art Circadian lighting, accent walls and individualized furnishings to assist with room recognition and comfort through familiarity; and secure and monitored outdoor courtyards to allow supervised, independent access and encourage exercise and time outside in fresh air and natural surroundings.
"Living here could cost less than you think," Patton said, "and the peace of mind for the residents and those who love them most? Who could put a price on that? For additional details or to schedule a tour, call (337) 478-9150.