Washington Evening Journal
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Neighbors Growing Together | Apr 16, 2014

Halcyon House

Dec 19, 2013

The recent annual craft and vendor fair was well attended by the outer community as well as Halcyon residents. Many commented that they look forward to completing their Christmas list from the various vendors as well as buying goodies for the holiday season from Ione and Virginia.

Catherine Mattes had a surprise visit from her granddaughter Teresa and her daughter from Des Moines. It was a short visit but they enjoyed every minute of it.

Melba Grim was pleased to have her brother Wendell (Wendy) Hall and wife, Barbara from Packwood stop in for a visit on Thursday morning. Melba has a wall of fame in her apartment that sports 66 stockings all hung with care that symbolizes her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren. WOW!

It was a real treat to have Lyle Moen and Nancy Rash on hand to share their 42-day expedition to Canada and Alaska adventure with Halcyon friends. They hiked a total of 78 miles and are planning a trip to the Florida Everglades and Florida Keys in 2014.

The High School Show Choir under the direction of Mike Jewell gave a mini concert in Timmins Dining Room. There was an abundance of talent and the audience was thrilled with the Christmas selections.

The Young Mothers with Kids group visited on Thursday to visit with the Avalon residents. They brought homemade cookies and cheer to share with everyone.

The Kids Club from United Methodist Church was here to pass out Christmas sacks of goodies to Avalon House and Arbor House. Each child decorated their festive bags. They did some caroling as they passed through the hallways of the entire campus.

“Second Hand Toes” from Mount Pleasant was well received by a big audience in the Day Lounge last week. These two ladies gave a grandstand, high energy performance that made everyone want to get up and follow in their footsteps. They bring new light to the ole’ adage saying, “If you don’t use it, you lose it.”

The Clover Kids Club from St. James made homemade decorations that were given to each resident. They were well received and brought a smile to every resident. There is nothing like a homemade project that a child has made. They were all unique and special.

The Jackson Jets 4-H Club held a party for the residents in the Day Lounge Last Sunday.

Everyone enjoyed playing bingo and the residents were treated to all kinds of Christmas goodies. 4-H is a tremendous youth organization with the motto of-Head for Clearer Thinking, Heart for Greater Loyalty, Hands for Larger Service and Health for Better Living. The 4-H Creed was developed in 1918 in Wyoming. Each 4-H member strives to make the best, better.

The Sitler Independent living and invited guests had a delicious prime rib dinner in the Timmins Dining Room on Tuesday evening. Chef Jim Lawless also prepared some of his specialties that complemented the plated meal. Chris Marshall was at the organ playing dinner and Christmas selections.

A party was held in the Applewood Bistro where everyone attending was to wear their most festive Christmas sweater and/or tie and to bring a $1 wrapped item for the gift exchange. The independent and assisted living used their imagination and creativity to come up with a lottery ticket, undergarment, blinking nose and the original $1 bill, just to name a few of the exchange gifts. Virginia Tschantz and Allan Utech were declared the most festive winners as they sported their prizes about the room. The 40 who attended had soups, goodies, wine, cheese and lots of laughs..

Holiday Spa Day in the Morrison Center was a welcomed event as everyone prepares for the holidays. Winter and dark days were treated with the in house pampering of a pedicure, manicure and/or a chair massage without leaving the comforts of home.

Ethel’s holiday program was titled “St. Nicolas.” Cupcakes decorated with homemade humorous Christmas picks were a topic of discussion as they were passed around the room. Tradition of gift giving started with the Wise Men that came bearing gifts for baby Jesus. Silent Night was written for a choir when the church organ was broken and the Austrian Priest wrote the music for a guitar to accompany the choir.

Folks in the Avalon House have been enjoying Christmas singing and bell ringing at the sing-along sessions this week.

In keeping with the festivities, staff members Kirk and Darby were on hand to sing a multitude of Christmas songs to a room full of eager listeners. Everyone was encouraged to sing along.

The Avalon House were treated to the film “Nativity.” This was a laugh-out -loud funny festive frenzy as the teacher stages the school’s musical production of the Nativity.

The hustle and bustle of Christmas is definitely in the Halcyon air. Many have been reflecting on the past year and how blessed we truly are. The holiday food drive for Hacap is a big success with an abundance of donated food and paper products. The residents and their families as well as staff have been sharing holiday goodies on a daily basis. All the nooks and crannies are beautifully decorated, the Christmas trees are shining brightly, the baking has begun, the shopping and wrapping are in full swing, the carolers young and not so young have been singing their hearts out, the entertainment has been wonderful and now we are just waiting for St. Nick to appear.

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