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McPeak's Assisted Living Newsletter

McPeak's Newsletter

March 2011 Newsletter

By Linda Ohlsen, Recreation Director


The beginning of February had us all talking about that curious little fellow- the groundhog. At our word games morning we discussed the furry fellow and learned all about his size, weight and eating habits. We conducted a poll to see how many of us felt the groundhog's predictions were usually accurate and found that 60% of us felt he was wrong most of the time. On the 2nd, we were amused to find that the predictions for spring were somewhat divided, depending on the individual groundhog. Our hope was that those predicting an early spring were the accurate ones!

After the groundhog we moved on to celebrate the rabbit which was the ruling animal for this year's Chinese New Year. To begin our new year's celebration we had a "Tea Ceremony". Selecting one tea from the large assortment was difficult but fun. Robert Hall loved the orange spice blend and Fran Schadock found the pumpkin flavored tea to be outstanding. We all had our pick of fortune cookies too and are now most anxious to see if Ruth Faustich will be going to a wedding soon as per her fortune cookie prediction.

We studied the Chinese zodiac and the 12 animals used to represent the years of birth. We learned which animal represented each of us and the characteristics ascribed to our sign. Josephine D'Elia felt she was definitely true to her sign of the dog, being honest, loyal and a good secret keeper. Bobbie Smith also felt that the vibrant, energetic dragon was an accurate representation of herself. We have to agree, having seen Bobbie dancing at all our parties and helping out at recreation.

The Chinese people are fond of giving out red envelopes filled with coins for their new year, so on the 3rd each of us found a red envelope waiting at our place as we arrived for bingo. Each envelope contained a coin and if it was purple, you were a lucky winner of one of our year of the rabbit rabbits. Winners selecting one of our cute plush bunnies included Lee Kulakowski, Josephine Caputo, Madeline Pedota and Gilda Messina. There was a special rabbit too which went to our only guest born in the year of the rabbit, Chris Orth.

All our ladies were encouraged to wear red for wear red for women day on February 4th. Mary Morris was sporting a pretty red top that morning and I do believe it brought her extra luck at our "Ladies Trivia" game. Mary Pascale also wore red and looked stunning out on the dance floor as she danced to the keyboard selections of Freddie Prinz who was our afternoon entertainment.

We all spent much of the month creating the many beautiful Valentine's decorations that made McPeak's look lovely for the holiday. Colorful vases that were crafted by Juliette Gerlach and Julia Manganiello looked beautiful filled with red and pink roses and placed upon our recreation room mantel. We enjoyed reading and eating our tiny conversation hearts as we worked on Victorian valentine's for our recreation room wall. Tess Brana and Kitty Keegan did an outstanding job on their creations.

We discussed the many forms of love as we crafted our photo filled hearts for display in our hallway. Robert Hall did a very nice job with his as did Madeline Pedota.

Frank and Bob our 2 volunteer piano players were our special Valentine's, playing all our favorite romantic tunes and being sure to include "My Funny Valentine" in their selections. They also played the Happy Birthday song for Carmela Delisi plus a variety of Italian selections as their gift to her on her special day.

We treated ourselves to some chocolate hearts as we played our special bingo games. Prizes included perfumes, lotions, flowers and some very loveable stuffed animals. Ruth Beal left with a bag full of goodies as did Juliette Gerlach and Mary Pascale. Winners at our magazine scavenger hunt won some cute prizes too. Small plastic hearts filled with candies were passed out to all, beginning with Muriel Lizak's first place team. Muriel herself led the team to victory with some creative thinking by using a picture of a cat to qualify as the fur coat photo needed to win the game.

Everyone was saying "I Love Lucy" as we watched a biographical video of Lucille Ball. Lucy's crazy antics delighted viewers Frank Hartmann and Fran Schadock and had us all identifying the many celebrity guests she had on her shows.

For Valentine's Day we welcomed Sasha's Belly dancers. Our 3 performers were dressed in red and pink outfits with lots of gold and silver sequins and looked just gorgeous. Their dance routines were outstanding and we had fun clapping and chanting to exotic music they played. Near the end of their performance guests were invited to learn a few dance moves from the girls and join in on the fun. Hazel Siegel was first to grab a veil and get shakin' on the floor. She was so good that several other guests including Mary Pascale, Noreen Doohan and Carmela Delisi also gave it a try. All our dancers were fantastic and helped to win our hearts this past Valentine's Day.

Also fun this past month was our baking project, a delicious banana cake, which was made with the help of Jay Mercogliano and Nick Mazzillo. As always, we all felt this was the best baked treat we'd ever made. It was truly fantastic and we'll be holding on to this recipe and using it again I'm sure.

At the end of the month we were joined by two groups whose visits always delight us. The first was the Patchogue/Medford High School Key Club who brought their smiles, enthusiasm and lots of fun games for us to play. Josephine D'Elia and Ruth Faustich had fun using their creative thinking to play "Apples to Apples" and Josephine Caputo won all three games of "Dominoes" that she played with Fran Schadock and Joe D'Angelo. Rachel Nason and Juliette Gerlach went head to head at "Scrabble" and Nick Mazzillo was our "Connect Four" champ of the morning.

Our dear friends from the Seventh Day Adventist Church brought Valentine's greetings and a message of love to us all on the 26th. A beautiful hour long program of prayer, music and poetry was presented by about 25 choir members and delighted us all. We look forward to their next visit which will be for Easter.

Julia Manganiello was a true bowling champ this month, scoring one of her top games ever, a 202. Bobbie Smith also had some great scores this month as did Ruth Faustich and Kitty Keegan. Gilda Messina showed her experience at not bowling but bingo. Gilda took the top score for the month with 58 wins. Nick Mazzillo also did well as did new guest Juliette Gerlach who we note is a very lucky player.

As March roars in, we'll be setting our Irish eyes upon a variety of crafts and games for St. Patrick's Day. Our recreation room will become an Irish pub for the holiday and we'll be welcoming a visit or two from a friendly Leprechaun. There will be games and entertainment with an Irish flair plus lots of good fun and that's no blarney!