Washington Evening Journal
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Neighbors Growing Together | Aug 22, 2014

Halcyon House

Mar 07, 2013

Jo Swartzendruber has been enjoying the company of her daughter, Joette Berkompas, who traveled many air miles from Bangkok, Thailand. Jeff Swartzendruber of Urbandale was also in the area and had a great time with his mother and sister.

Joette also visited her children and grandchildren in Tennessee and Seattle, Wash., while in the states.

Monica McCarthy of Creston and Mike McCarthy of Des Moines spent time with their mother, Dorothy McCarthy. Also joining in family time were son Justin McCarthy and wife Donna who traveled from Pueblo West, Colo. Justin and Donna are en route to visit with their children and families at Quincy, Ill.

Halcyon friends extend sincere sympathy to the Esther Birney family, Dave and Linda Birney and Margaret and Dan Stauffer. Esther has been a longtime member of the Halcyon House community and will be missed. Many will remember Esther from her association with Tindal Law office, 4-H for youth and Methodist Church committees.

Marcia Robertson had a grand time with her first cousin, Charlotte Fagen of Sigourney, Charlotte’s daughters and spouses, Ann and Richard Kirkove of Sigourney and Connie and Wayne Eggleston of Pocahontas, Ark. They visited and enjoyed an afternoon of card playing. The group had a get together to celebrate Charlotte’s 90th birthday.

Marlie Greiner of Keota has been leading the “Stations of the Cross” in the Epworth Chapel on Wednesday afternoons.

The Rev. Jim Stiles of the Washington United Methodist Church provided service to the Halcyon House residents in the Epworth Chapel Sunday afternoon. The Scripture was from Luke 17:20-25 and the sermon was titled “Kingdom, Power and Glory.” Virginia Tschantz was the pianist for the service.

The Avalon House residents have been entertained with classical Hollywood movies such as “Charade,” starring Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant, who embark on a chaotic race against a gang of sinister crooks. “Philadelphia Story” was a delightful look at the trials and tribulations of the privileged class starring Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn and Jimmie Stewart. Stewart won an Academy Award for the offbeat character in this movie.

Monday night, many gathered for movie “Operation Petticoat” with Cary Grant and Tony Curtis. The pair shipped out for adventure and laughs in one of the most hilarious comedies to ever hit the high seas.

Dr. Seuss was the “Topic of the Day” with Lela Garton. Lela has many faithful followers as she brings yet another great program topic for her eager listening friends.

Dan and Karen Brownlee of Burlington played instruments and sang to a large group in the Day Lounge, Monday afternoon. They are also known as the “Joyful Sounds.” They have had the pleasure of traveling around producing joyful sounds to many over the past 25 years. The highly energetic music program featuring violin, electric piano, guitar and props had many laughing at the humorous antics the couple.

Ethel’s program “Hail to the Chief” discussed some strange trivia about past and present presidents. John Adams was the first president to live in the White House and Mrs. Adams used the East Room in which to hang her wash. James Buchanan was the only president who never married,while Grover Cleveland answered the White House phone personally. George Washington had 36 foxhounds and Franklin Roosevelt had a destroyer ship turn around to fetch his Scottie dog from the Aleutian Island with the rescue costing the taxpayers an estimated $15,000. Herbert Hoover’s son was the first and last to have an alligator in the White House.

“Life is Like a Bowl of Cherries” program began with a word search puzzle. The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the people of the United States from Japan. The Tokyo mayor gave Washington, D.C., 3,000 cherry trees in 1965 and the Japanese government gifted the first lady, Lady Bird Johnson, an additional 3,800 trees. The very first cherry blossom festival was held in the spring of 1935. Tart cherries are known as a super fruit that is rich in fiber, vitamins, beta-carotene, potassium and antioxidants that are helpful in treating muscle aches, backaches, sleep disorders and arthritis problems. It is said that George Washington did not chop down the cherry tree. That story comes from a fable written by Mason Weems in 1809. The fable remains popular and continues to be used as a tool to teach children the reward of telling the truth.

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