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Just a small pane of glass separates one of our new kittens from a friendly squirrel!

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Just like at Red’s Diner in Dollywood, or a corner Deli in any-city, USA. Wednesday is now Deli-Day at Pigeon Forge Care and Rehab, complete with red baskets, red-and-white checked paper and a pickle on the side. As part of the culture change process to add variety, unique style and homestyle touches, designating Wednesday as Deli Day is just one more step on the path to adding fun and color to daily life here at the center.

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Two elders who live at Pigeon Forge Care and Rehab Center just returned from Panama City Beach, Florida where they were on this year’s annual vacation excursion with 13 other skilled nursing centers from across the company.  Stella Drummond, pictured here, and Virginia Harrison dipped their toes in the sand and surf for four days after flying from Nashville to Florida.  Stella wanted to bring some beach back with her and brought a jar of sand as a keepsake (don’t tell the Florida authorities!).

Our nurse practitioner, Charlene Matthews, had some kittens and was looking for a good home where they would be cared for, and loved. She gave the seven-week-old kittens to us, and they have lived here at our home for about a week now.

The first day when we told the elders the kittens would be living here, the elders couldn’t believe
it. One elder, who only goes to church and back, came into the dining room and said, ‘Where is them cats, I want to see them!’ He went pet and hugged one of the kittens, and has come every day to see them. Another elder who doesn’t come out of her room much has come every day to watch them play. She said, ‘The kittens are just wonderful! I love to just watch them play. They are so cute.’

The elders all had a name they wanted the kittens to be called, so we made a list of all the names and the elders voted. The male cat has four white paws and is called Socks. The female cat has seven toes on each of her front paws, and her name is Sunshine.

The kittens get 24-7 care. They will never be short on love here. The elders love them and so do the staff and family members – everyone wants to see them. The kittens bring smiles and laughs to everyone.

As one elder said, ‘They are the cat’s meow, and that’s a good thing.’

– Glenda Trentham, Quality of Life Director

Our elders wanted to do something for the ones who take care of them each and every day – they wanted to give back. So, this is what they did.

The elders made Valentines and gave them out to every staff member. Everyone also had an ice cream sundae. The elders worked all week making the Valentines for the staff. They include a poem that Nobbia Ownby, one of our elders, remembered from her childhood. All the elders agreed it was the right poem, with the right words to say on this day of LOVE.

You could see the joy and love in the faces of the elders as they give the staff their special Valentines. Each elder had something special to say as they gave out their hearts: ‘Thank you for making this feel like my home. Thank you for taking care of me, thank you for loving me. Thank you for talking to me, thank you for helping me, thank you for your smile, thank you for the hugs. Thank you for always being there for me.’

This was the elders way of saying, ‘thank you all, for all you do for each of us.’

Sometimes it is the simple things in life that can make us all HAPPY.

– Glenda Trentham, Quality of Life

On Dec 19, we had a Christmas party for the elders with Elvis.

Our Elvis is Lou Vuto, who has his own show here in Pigeon Forge, ‘Lou Vuto’s Salute To Elvis’. The elders loved it and the smiles on their faces were the proof. He sang, kissed and hugged the elders.

One of our ladies cried with joy and said, “I seen Elvis in person many years ago, but this time he gave me a present and a kiss. I will never take off my bracelet that he gave me.” She wouldn’t let us take the tag off and said, “I want everyone to know how much it cost and that he loves me.”

It was a wonderful night for all the elders, family members and staff. The magic of Christmas joy, hope and love…

– Glenda Trentham, Quality of Life Director

This fall, about 170 Signature residents and caregivers traveled to Branson, Missouri for the annual resident vacation. For a glimpse of the action, check out the video below.

Recently, Pigeon Forge Care and Rehab held it’s annual Hall of Fame celebration.  This year, four inductees were honored with a nice dinner, plaques commemorating their induction, and a program featuring speeches, music, and the “Everyday Heroes” poem.  Picutred: Jane Brown.

 

Resident Henry Seay was presented with a certificate by Lt. Col Greg Stephens.

Pigeon Forge Care and Rehab, in conjunction with Amedisys Home Health/Hospice, held a Veteran’s Day celebration on November 8 at the Ft. Sanders Sevier Senior Center in Sevierville.  Dozens of veterans from across the community were honored with lunch, plaques, awards, thanks, and recognition.  The ROTC team from Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City also were on hand to assist and honor the veterans present.  The day featured a fly-over with vintage WWII planes and a cannon salute by the Carson-Newman team.

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We took eight of our elders to the Street Rod car show here in Pigeon Forge on Sept. 6.

The elders enjoyed the show as each elder looked for and found a car like one they had in the past, and reminisced about days gone by. They talked about where they went, what they did – one told about his first date, one told about her first kiss. It was a special time for each elder. One elder was a police officer and saw a prison bus that had handcuffs and bars at the windows, and a shot gun by the driver seat. What a story he told about the time he drove a bus full of prisoners to prison.

We were all laughing. It was a very good day for everyone.

– Glenda Trentham, QOL Director