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Everything posted by Ella
  1. Carrie: I realize your post is from June so you may have already found what you were looking for but if not, check out www.wildlifevideo.com/videoanddvds/singalongs.html These are videos that I have from years and years ago and the words scroll on the bottom of the screen as the vidoe plays. I found the website and they now offer DVD's. They are called "Sing along with Frank Woehrle". I think they are kind of hinkie because of the videos that go along with the songs but the residents love them! If you haven't found anything yet, check out the web page and hope it helps you! Ella
  2. Cindytexan: I am not sure about Texas because I am from Michigan but 1) Shame on your Administrator! This is the residents home and the first thing I would do as the Recreation Therapist or Activity Director (what ever your title is) is to take this to your Resident Council and put it to vote! Let them know that administration has asked that the calendars be removed and when they raise a fuss, ask them to vote who wants them left up and who doesen't. When you get the majority saying they want them up, take this information back to your Administrator and present it to him/her (along with the statement that this is their home!). 2) Unfortunately I just reread the Federal Regulations (F-Tags) and there isn't anything in there that states we have to post our calendars "anywhere" in the facility. What the F-Tag does say is that we have to notify residents of preferred activities, and transport those who need assistance to and from activities including indoor, outdoor and outings. 3) Our Michigan Tags do not mention any of this so if we are defficient in this area, it falls under this F-Tag. I post my calendar on each resident's door and provide one at bedside for those that request one. We are going to be moving into a new building in July and I am up in the air about posting the calendar on the residents doors. The reason is because when they are removed each month, some tape is left behind and it looks horrible! I am searching for a different way to post these on the door or inside the resident room because of this. I hope I have helped in some way! Good luck and stand up for your residents! You know your residents better than admin does! Ella
  3. Hello Derek! Greetings from Michigan, U.S.A.! I am the Recreation Therapist at a Long Term Care Facility. My residents range from having mild cognitive and physical deficits to severely impaired in both areas. As you can imagine, programming can be a challenge meeting everyone's needs! I would love to hear some of your activity ideas; what are your favorite activities, what your residents prefer, what works, what you have tried and seems unsuccessful etc. I will be waiting to hear from you. Best regards, Ella
  4. I was just wondering after all the posts you received with many ideas for your young resident, how things were going for him, his family and you. Could you give us an update? Ella
  5. I agree with all the ideas posted. You are truly faced with a challenge and are going to have to ask the family a lot of questions. Music is a very good tool to use for in room stimulation but as we all know, and please no one take offense to this; no one wants to listen to music every waking moment for days, weeks, and months on end. When you find out what type of music this young man enjoys, you are probably going to end up getting a handful of CD's to use and they will get old really quick if you don't have something else to use. From experience, HE IS IN THERE! He knows what is going on! Unless you know for sure his hearing is gone, he hears what is going on around him! I have a gentleman right now that has been at our facility for 40 plus years because of a truck accident that left him with a TBI. He now has a dx of Persistive Vegitative State because he has declined so much over the years. He is on MD ordered Bed Rest and only gets out of bed once a week for his bath due to spontanious fractures (severe osteoporosis). When he first came to the facility, he was much like your young man, unable to verbilize, non-ambulatory, etc. but he does have vision in both eyes. We read to him and many times, he just lays there as if to be looking past us. Once I was reading a story to him about a construction job, where the men were moving dirt to build a large corporation building. I looked up at him and there was a tear coming down his face. This gentleman used to work driving trucks and equipment in a stone quarry. My point is, there is no way to know for sure; but I am a firm believer that your young man is aware of what is going on, maybe not everything but one little thing can or may trigger a reaction, especially since you say that his eye wiggles. So with that said, speak to the family, find out if he liked to read. If he did, read those types of stories to him. If he didn't find out what he liked to watch on TV. If he liked comedies, history, mysteries or whatever, go to your local library and get those types of story lines on audio books. If he watched comedies or sit-coms on TV, get humor audio books. Unless you are in a larger town or city, most libraries don't have a huge selection of audio books so get them through inter-library loan. In doing this you can inter-change the books with the music. Also, decorating his room with his interests, sports posters, cars, musical groups, a lot of these you can get off the internet for free with a little searching. You can also go to the toy department and get a glow-in-the-dark solar system with planets & stars to put on his ceiling (something to look at instead of just ceiling tiles). Put them up with the poster-tack, the stuff that looks like bubble gum, then you can take it down and move it periodically to make it look different. If you can't find the solar system, put a poster on the ceiling and change that periodically. As everyone else said, hand/arm massage with lotion. Gentle touch like this when accepting (he'll pull away when he doesn't want it or not feeling well) because he's going to need to know he is loved! Hope this helps! and Bless you for all that you do! Ella
  6. I don't know if this will help you or not, but I came across a web page "Penny Post Cards" and it lists all the States in the United States. Once you click on a state, it lists all the counties in that state. You then click on a county and post cards related to that county come up and you can print them. They do have captions under them, telling you what they are but not a lot of detail. Because you are in the UK, this may not help you a great deal but some of them are beautiful and you may be able to use some of them as a reminisce tool. For example there are old mining pictures, boat docks, city streets, country markets, the list is endless. Once you have the pictures you could use these to fit your needs. It would be worth it to at least look at. Hope it helps a little! http://www.usgwarchives.org/special/ppcs/ppcs.html Another idea, which is one that I used for some of my lower functioning residents, is to print two of several post cards and do a matching game with them. Mix up a few face up on the table in front of them and have them pick the two mountain scenes, or the two water secenes etc. It is good for cognitive stimulation! Be careful not to put too many in front of them, 6 or 8 is plenty! Ella
  7. I would like to have a little more information! What do you have for a budget? Do your tenants like to do things where they receive a prize? Do you have primarily men or women? What type of games are you currently doing? With the lack of all that information, it is a lttle difficult to answer your question; the main reason being making suggestions and having those being the same things you are doing now. Also knowing my residents, prizes and food are key to getting more of them to participate. First I would like to pass on a little information I received at a conference I attended not too long ago. Our residents, clients, tenants (or whatever your facilities call the elderly we serve) are no matter how hard we try; living in a structured environment. They have staff telling them when to eat, when to get dressed, when to go to bed, when to come to activities etc. Even in the Eden and Eden - Like environments, there is structure "It's time to take your meds". Anyhow you get the point. The presenter at the conference explain to us that if we as activity professionals, either Activity Directors or Recreation Therapists did an in-depth survey of all our residents, we would find that the majority of them never went to bingo until they were admitted to our facilities; yet it is the most popular activity on the calendar! Why? Because it is the only part of their day that is unpredictable! Yes, it is at the same time, same day every week and yes, we tell them how long they can play, how many cards they can play and how many times they can win, BUT they don't know until they play if they are going to win or not! That's what makes it unpredictable! All other times of their lives someone is telling them what to do and when to do it and they know what to expect when. My point is, we as activity professionals need and can make other activities just as unpredictable to get more residents to attend. Don't get me wrong, it won't be the turn out like bingo but you can and will see your numbers rise. For example, most of us do trivia with our residents and most of us grab coffee or other beverages and maybe a snack, sit around a table and "reminisce" with the residents while asking trivia questions. Great! Gets their brains working and promotes socialization. But truthfully how many are sitting at your table? I love getting my residents thinking and the more in my activity room the better so here's one idea that I did to replace the "Round Table Trivia Time". I bought two pieces of poster board, taped them together so I have one long poster board. I covered the poster board with clear contact paper so I can use wet erase markers on it and use it for several different activities. Valentines Day is coming up so I may put on the Activity calendar "Race to the Town Social Trivia". I take the long poster board and start at the bottom left corner and draw a race track up the left side, across the top and down the right side, with a start gate and a finish line. I have two Valentine People, one man, one woman and I give them a name "Blooming Betty" and "Blushing Bob". They have to be kind of small so they fit on your track (they are just graphics printed off the computer or you can draw stick people - doesn't matter as long as you have something to move up the track). I use tape so I can move them up the track. Gather everyone that is going to play, split into two teams. One will be "Blooming Betty" and the other will be "Blushing Bob". Gather all your trivia books cards, etc. Start with the first team asking any question, if they answer they move up the track one spot, if they don't know the answer the other team gets a chance to answer. If they answer, they move up a spot. Then it is the second teams question. Keep in mind to alternate teams and remember who didn't answer and who had the chance to answer the other teams question! That way you don't skip anyones turn! The first team to the finish line wins and everyone on the team gets a prize. For this game, I give small prizes, small knick-knacks, beanie babies, small snacks etc. This is one of the unpredictables! They don't know if they are going to win and they don't know what their prize will be because I give something different everytime! This is just one example of how you can change things up a bit to get your attendance up. Let us know what you are already trying and maybe we can add new ideas!
  8. I do a game similar to the "Bean Auction" only I call it "Mystery Auction" because I put all the prizes in large grocery bags, this way the residents do not know what they are bidding on and don't see what they have won until the game is over. I found pictures of "funny money" on my computer program and prnted them off, copied enough so that each resident is given $45 dollars. I too set the rules so that no one can bid $45 to start just to keep things fair. Also our lower functioning residents need assist with the bidding and so far our moderate to higher functioning residents have not screamed out that this is cheating! BEWARE....This does get noisy but it is a blast! I generally have 15 bags to bid on (all numbered so they bid on bag number one etc.) I usually have one or two bags with a Booby-Prize in it, something silly and everyone gets a kick out if it when they find out they spent x # of dollars on 2 kleenexes or a package of pudding and spoon! Have fun with this, I usually dress up in jeans, flannel shirt and old straw hat or baseball cap, just like an auctioneer, change my name to something silly and walk into the room like I have never seen the residents before! They love it! Ella
  9. I was wondering if anyone has come up with a way to play the game "Minute To Win It" in a Long Term Care Setting? A family member mentioned to me that she had seen it played in another LTC and it was a blast; but she did not have all the details. I have not seen this show myself, so I know nothing about the game. If anyone has come up with a way to play the game in LTC, I would love to hear all the details because like all of you, we are always looking for new ideas! Thank you in advance! Ella
  10. I agree with all the suggestions, note cards, pictures, wallet etc. but without knowing this gentlemans dx we do not know if any of these things will work i.e. can he follow the note cards, vision status etc so I hope some of these things will help you. As far as the screw/bolt board.... is this something you want him to be able to do? By this I mean using the screw driver to put the screws into the wood? Putting the nuts on to the bolts? If this is the case, safety is an issue and I am at a loss other than supervision. If you are looking for a "busy board"; something that he can tinker with on his own with little to no supervison; years ago, we had a gentleman that needed to tinker all the time so we had our maintenance department make a "busy board" for him and it was approved by the state during our annual survey. They attached all types of hardware to a 2 foot by 2 foot (approx.) piece of plywood. All the edges were sanded down so there were no rough edges/splinters. I don't remember all that was on it but I remember there was a slide bolt, a latch, an actual faucet with the hot & cold handles etc. Everything had smooth surfaces, so he would not get cut on anything and he would sit and tinker with this thing for hours, turning this, twisting that, opening the other etc. We also had a board with plumbers tubing set up for him. The board was about a foot square with one piece of plumbers tubing permanently attached to the center. He then had a tub with several other pieces of all lengths and angles that he could put together and take apart. Nothing too small to put in his mouth so again little to no supervision. Hope this helps!
  11. Ella

    Winter Olympics

    We hold Winter Olympics each year when it applies. I have six events and hold three on two different days because they take time to get each resident through each event. I keep score for each event and award a medal for the top three (Gold, silver, Bronze) along with a certificate that I print off the computer. I start the first events with an Opening Ceremony with a lighting of the "Torch" a small candle that we extinguish right away because of fire codes. Each year I try to come up with different events but usually end up with some of the same events. Because our population is ever changing this is not a problem. On the second day of the events (usually a week later) I have the final events and closing ceremony. I relight the candle and have one of the residents extinguish it. After the events I pass out all the medals and certificates and we have cake and ice cream. The following are the events we had the last time. **Keep in mind that these are done inside so imagination is the key, reminding the residents that the floor is made of ice etc.** Opening Ceremony: 1) Ice Bowling - Set up bowling pins (doesn't have to be ten pins, use # of pins you want. Residents get two chances to knock down as many pins as they can. If there is a tie, you have a tie breaker until you have Gold, Silver, Bronze winners. 2)Snowman Ringer - Set up bowling pins with middle pin decorated with snowman cut-out. I have large rings I found in the toy department from a childs ring toss game. Residents get 5 tosses each, 2 points for each pin they ring, 1 point for a leaner and 5 points for ringing the snowman, same as a bove for tie-breakers. 3)Artic Archery - We have a large window in our dining room (Activity Room) where I used a wet erase marker to draw a snowman on the window. I have a childs gun that shoots suction cup arrows. Residents get 1 point for bottom ball of snowman, 2 points for middle ball, 3 points for top ball, and 5 points for hitting the nose of snowman, tie breaker as above. Finish the activity with light snack and remind everyone to return for the closing ceremony and final events. Closing Ceremony and Final events: 1)Ice Hockey - I have a shortened hockey stick, lines marked on the floor and a bucket decorated like an igloo. Residents get three shots, 1 point for next to opening of bucket and 3 points for getting it in the bucket, tie breaker as above. 2)Snowball Toss - I have a hat similar to one that would be used on a snowman and a bag of marshmallows. Residents are given an alotted amount of time to throw the marshmallows into the hat, 1 point for each marshmallow that goes int to the hat, tie beaker as above. 3)Curling - This is similar to Bocce. I use an old round table cloth that I painted circles on. Residents are given three Bocce Balls, depending on how many circles you have on the table cloth, give points for each circle, and more points for landing in the target in the middle, tie breaker as above. After you have your list of all the winners, award the medals and certificates. I always take pictures and when done serve ice cream and cake. Also I found on the internet the Athletes Oath and the Judges Oath. We repeat these at the Opening Ceremony befor starting the games. The residents really enjoy this as it makes it all feel more official. Athletes Oath: In the name of all the competitors; I promise that we shall take part in these olympic games, respecting and abiding by the rules which govern them, committing ourselves to a sport in the true spirit of sportsmanship, for the glory of the sport and the honor of our teams! Judges Oath: In the name of all the judges; I promise that we shall officiate in these olympic games with complete impartiality, respecting and abiding by the rules which govern them in the true spirit of sportsmanship! I hope some of this will help you and or others who are looking for ideas! Ella
  12. When you have an activity that has to be cancelled for whatever reason, outdoor activity cancelled due to rain, volunteer doesn't show up etc. What activity do you use in place of the scheduled activity? I am running into the problem of my staff using the same activity over and over when one has to be cancelled, or if there is one on the calendar and there is a small turn out. For example: if I have an out door activity planned and it rains, staff will play card bingo or po-ke-no, if I have dominoes on the calendar and they "can only get 3-4 residents" they will change the activity to card bingo or po-ke-no. I realize we can not do anything about the weather, however we can do something about "only getting 3-4 residents" to an activity. I work M-F and have left specific instructions to call me if changes need to be made, this seems to be forgotten quite often especially by one staff. When I question her, she states reasons why such as "no one wanted to play dominoes, I could only get 3-4 people to come down so I played card bingo, then I had 12 people". When speaking to other staff in my department I find that she didn't want to play dominoes and persuaded the residents to do an activity that she wanted. Of course this is all hear say. My question is, what activities do use as backups or alternatives in case you have cancellations. I would like to have a backup plan on days this staff works. I want to have a small list of alternate activities for her to pick from in the event one has to be cancelled because we already have card bingo and po-ke-no on our monthly calendar and don't want to utilize these as backup activities. I welcome all your suggestions! Thanks! Ella
  13. Thanks (TX)! I will be waiting to hear back from you to see if she has heard of this issue/problem and if she has any suggestions! Ella
  14. We have reality orientation boards, bulletin boards and activity boards. The reality orientation boards are manufactured so they come with "stuff" to put on them i.e. day, date, season, next holiday etc. Our main bulletin board is in our main entrance hallway. I decorate it related to each months holiday example: Christmas, Easter, Mother's Day etc. August is the tough month because there is no holiday so I decorate it with a picnic theme. Our activity boards are dry erase boards and each day I write the daily activities on them including the times. Next to the main activity boards, I have a smaller dry erase board. I use this board to write "Happy Birthday" to residents who are having a birthday that day. If no one is having a birhtday on any given day, I use the smaller board to write interesting facts, quotes, totally useless and but interesting facts, trivia, whacky holidays, etc. all of which I have found on the internet. The residents really enjoy reading these each day! Example: The average McDonald's Big Mac Bun has 198 sesame seeds on it! OR Today is "National *BLACK COW* (Root Beer Float) Day"! You can have a lot of fun with this smaller board! Ella
  15. Does anyone have in their facility any policies related to the use of pedestal hairdryers etc. for residents who are on O2? Specifically, there are new regulatory alerts out in our state (MI) stating that if there are residents who are in the beauty shop and are using O2, we can be cited if there are warnings on the equipment i.e. pedestal dryers, blow dryers, curling irons, hair spray etc. stating not to use near compressed oxygen. If a resident is observed receiving O2 under the dryer, while the beautician is using the blow dryer etc. the surveyors will cite at the immediate jeopardy level. Has anyone seen this in your state and if so, have you come up with a policy? different equipment? How have you planned for this issue? I welcome any and all input on this issue/problem. Ella
  16. Minita: I work in Long Term Care so activities are a bit different than Assisted Living. My Residents range from limited assist-cognitively alert to totally dependent-severely impaired. Our activities include residents of all abilties and cognitive status'. Of course we start all activities with music and depending on the activity we choose the music accordingly, up-beat vs. soothing. Those residents that are unable to actively participate are still getting sensory stimulation from the music, conversations and people watching. Some of our activities include: 1)card/board games - Uno, Yahtzee, Dominoes, etc. I have an activity called Table Games where I set up several different games at various tables. The more alert residents can choose their own game i.e. a game of rummy, while I help another table with a game of Uno, and my activity aide assists another table with a game of checkers and at the same table a game of dominoes. We also serve light snacks and drinks. 2)Manicures 3)Bingo, Card Bingo, Po-Ke-No 4)Any Social to get them outside - Ice Cream Social (made to order Ice Cream Sundaes), Root Beer Floats, Fruit Smoothies, Irish Sodas etc. all with up beat music and sometimes a game of ball toss or some other form of light exercise 5)Coupon Clippers - I keep the coupons from our Sunday paper and ask staff to bring in theirs - Resisents clip the coupons and we put them in a decorated tub organized by items (meats, dairy, cereal/breads, pet supplies etc) we then have this tub in our employee cafeteria for staff to pick from on their breaks. **If not sorted staff doesn't have time to look through them** While residents clip Activity staff sorts out expired coupons and places new ones in tub. ***On scheduled days when there are no coupons, we cut pictures out of old magazines to make "Sensory Stimulation" Picture Books. We cut out pictures, glue to plain paper and place in binders. We have made specific books for residents related to past interests (hunting/fishing, babies, cooking, etc) 6)We have many different trivia games, Penny Ante - (Take a Penny if you have ever... Give two pennies to everyone at the table who likes....)at the same time of doing this activity, we reminisce about the questions, at the end of the game top 3 residents with the most pennies (we use poker chips) gets a prize. Wheel of trivia - I laminated the alphabet (individual letters) and I use a poster board (covered with clear contact paper) to tape the letters to. I usually use this game with a theme (4th of July words) write blanks on the board for every letter in the word, have residents guess a letter (one resident at a time). As they guess a letter, remove it from the board so they know what has been used. If they guess a letter in the word write it in the space (using a wet erase marker (so you can reuse the board). The resident that guesses the word gets a prize. Race to the Finish Trivia - I use the same Board and draw a race track from the bottom of the board up across the top and back to the bottom on the other side. I have two small laminated cars. Split residents into two teams. Take turns going from one team to the next asking trivia questions. If team 1 gets the answer right they move up one space, if they do not, team 2 gets a chance to answer, if they get the answer right, they move up one space. You have to remember it is now team 2's turn because that was team 1's question! 1st team to the finish line gets a prize. I have a few other trivia games as well 7) Monthly Birthday Celebration - we do a version of a cake walk where the residents pass around laminated pieces of cake and when the music stops, the resident holding the number called gets a goodie bag,we do this for several goodie bags and then one larger goodie bag we assure goes to one of our monthly birthday residents, we also do a similar activity called pass the present where a present is passed around. The present is wrapped with several layers of wrapping paper, when the music stops the resident holding the present tries to unwrap it, when the music starts they have to continue to pass the present, the resident that gets the present unwrapped gets what it inside. All birhtday parties include cake and ice cream. 8)We do a wide variety of outings depending on what month it is and we do the standard activities that everyone does, exercise in many forms, religion, coffee socials, and special events that includes families. Wheew!!!! I hope a little bit of this helps and if you have any questions please ask! Ella
  17. Minta: Could you give us some idea of what you have done? What activities have you tried, are tired of etc. so we don't post the same 'ol same 'ol stuff and maybe we can give you fresh ideas! Just a thought! Ella
  18. If you are looking for a BIG EVENT, deck out your actvity room with a '50s theme, music included and serve ice cream soda's. If you are looking for something just for an afternoon activity, then do an Ice Cream Social. Play some up beat music and have vanilla ice cream with lots of different toppings for the residents to choose from. I am from Michigan and though we do get some hot weather, it doesn't get HOT, HOT, HOT, so we do our Ice Cream Social outside and they love it. We make their ice cream sundae's to order, play music and some times a little ball toss, ballloon ball or another form of exercise. We also have done root beer floats which are a huge hit! They don't get root beer as it is not available through our dietary vendor so it is an extra special treat. I did the "50s theme for our Resident-Family Picnic one year and of course saved all the decorations. I occasionally use the decorations for a smaller afternoon activity. FYI: Hit the local thrift stores and pick up 45 records. They are great to use as decorations. I used fishing line and hung them from the ceiling! Hope this helps a bit! Ella
  19. Here is another poem for Activity Professionals. I hope you enjoy it! "A Tribute to Activity Professionals - Thank You" Thank you for all that you do to improve the quality of life for those who matter the most, your residents! They appreciate it! Thank you for all your creativity. The residents are thankful. Thank you for the extra effort you put into each day. Thank you for helping out in the dining rooms for meal programs. They need you! The nursing staff does appreciate it! Thank you for all the special trips and community events. They love being a part of the community. Thank you for all the effort you put into your volunteer program, it definitely does not happen without you! Thank you for smiling even when you don't feel like it! Thank you for spending time with those residents who can not come out of their rooms. They especially appreciate the pet visits. Thank you for the great survey. It takes your entire team and a dynamic program. Thank you for giving all of your self. Thank you for filling the resident's days with meaningful activities. Thank you for pushing so hard to get extra special programs approved. The extra effort paid off! Thank you for all the extra hours you put into planning and implementing elaborate events. It was appreciated! Thank you for attending seminars and association meetings, even when sometimes you have to use vacation days. Thank you for supporting other activity professionals. Thank you for taking a chance and trying something new. Thank you for dressing up for all those holidays. Thank you for all the hugs and love you give to them. Thank you for developing all the children's programs. Thank you for all the spiritual programs, because it means more to them at this point in their life. But most of all thank you for dedicating your life to this very special profession, Activity Professionals! We can't imagine any facility without you! by: Sandra Stimson, Executive Director (Alternative Solutions in Long Term Care) WOW! This just about says it all! Ella
  20. The "Activity Pest" Poem was written by Suzanne Williams. I am glad you enjoyed it. Here is another one you may be able to use in your Independent Living Facility. "Activity Professionals......" Conduct more interviews than... Jay Leno Do enough exercise to be on... Sportsworld Put on as many specials as... Bob Hope Ad Lib as much as... Joan Rivers Play as many games as... Sesame Street Know as much trivia as the contestants on... Jeopardy Live through as many traumas as... Dallas Deal with as much illness as... General Hospital Have as much compassion as... Little House on the Prairie Analyze current events like... The Today Show And - We are ready to go into reruns... At any time Above and beyond all this WE MUST... Sing like... Kate Smith Play the piano like... Peter Nero Do stand up comedy like... George Burns M.C. like... Georgie Jessel Act like... Katherine Hepburn Edit newspapers like... William Ranpolph Hearst Read like... Orson Wells AND... And do bulletin boards like... Norman Rockwell (Adapted from a speech by Madge Schweinsberg, Sept. 1981) I hope you enjoy this as much as the "Activity Pest". I have one other that I really like as well. It is called "ATribute to Activity Professionals! - Thank you". It is quite long so I will put it in another post. Ella
  21. I am not sure if this is the one that you are looking for but I hope it wil do! "ACTIVITY PEST" Why do they come to my door and ask, "Do you want to play Bingo"? "No I'll pass! Can't you see I'm trying to sleep? Now leave quietly, without a peep"! Who is back the very next day? "Would you like a manicure"? I say, "Okay". Or I tell her, "Maybe I will on another day". Ah! She's gone - there is quiet! alright! Now, it's just me and The Price is Right! Knock, knock! Can you guess? Yep! She's back - The Activity Pest! "We're having a party. Please won't you come"? "If I go this time, will you leave me alone"? She tries to get me in the mood and bribes me with a little food. So I tag along - to this party I go. There are people dancing, and what do you know? I'm talking and eating and enjoying the show! I guess these activities aren't so bad. In fact, the party helped me forget feeling sad. So, if you get a knock on your door and it's the Pest, try not to ignore, Believe it or not, her intentions are right; to get us out of our rooms and into the spotlight! This may not be the poem you were looking for but I love it! Hope you enjoy it either way! Ella
  22. Ella

    Memorial Day

    Do you have Activity Staff? If so, print up Certificates of Appreciation for your Veteran's. Get your patriotic music out, get your red, whiite and blue decorations out and have cake, ice cream and punch. Have everything ready for your staff since you cannot be there. Have a short "Memorial Day Ceremony" speech where your staff honors your Veteran's and then ends the ceremony by honoring all past present and future Veteran's. Decorate your activity area with your red, white and blue stuff and play the music in the background. If you are able invite your local VFW or DAV (Disabled American Veterans) to come to be guests at the ceremony. You will be amazed at how honored they will be to be asked to attend and it has been my experience that they also will ask to be part of the ceremony. Hope this helps! P.S. Remember to serve your guests first and ask them to stay to visit with your "Honored Veteran's"! Ella
  23. I love the ideas! They are perfect! Keep them coming! Ella
  24. We occasionally play the game Penny Ante, where the Residents are seated around a table. Each Resident is given ten pennies (poker chips) and there are pennies (poker chips) in the middle of the table for the "pot". We have a stack of cards with a question or instructions on them. Each resident takes a turn at answering the question or following the instructions on the card. At the end of the game, the residents with the most "pennies" get a prize from our prize cart (1st, 2nd, 3rd place). We have used this game for years so the cards have been used over and over and I have made some cards of my own. I need help "your imagination" on creating some new cards to mix into our deck. Not only do we follow the instructions but we reminisce about what is on the card as well so it is a hilarious game listening to the residents responses. Examples are: Give a penny to everyone who has ever gone skinny dipping. Take a penny from the pot if you have ever made soap. Shake hands with the person to your right and give them a penny. Give a penny to everyone who is wearing pantyhose. Take two pennies from the pot if you have ever been to the ocean. You get the idea. Traditional or silly questions both work for this game. I need new topics to make new cards so we are not reminiscing about the same stuff over and over. Thank you! Ella
  25. One year we made gift tags out of all the old greeting card fronts that were donated. We used pinking shears and the specialty scissors that have the different edges on them to cut out the pictures from the greeting cards. They don't even have to be Christmas cards. They can be animals, flowers etc. Whatever you have. Once the picture is cut out, use a hole punch to punch a hole at the top and string a small piece of ribbon through so the gift tag can be taped to the gift. One of your residents can write To: and From: on the back if you would like to add that. Once you have enough, bundle them in groups of 10 to 15 tags depending on how many you would like to give. I put ours in a small baggie and sealed it with an address label I made on the computer that said "Made with Love from The Residents of (Facility Name)" Hope this helps! Ella
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