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McPeak's Assisted Living Newsletter

February 2012 Newsletter

By Linda Ohlsen, Recreation Director

January had us thinking about cold weather and winter storms. We reminisced about shoveling snow, snowball fights and warming up with our favorite soups or hot chocolate.

A forest of snow covered trees filled our mantel thanks to the creative efforts of Marcus Lloyd and Ted Gosnell. Also looking beautiful were the many blue and white snowflakes made by Noreen Doohan and Josephine Caputo.

Our snowmen were dressed for the weather, wearing cute earmuffs and scarves. They were made by Alex Salmin and Alfred Merrett and brought lots of smiles to all who viewed them in our hallway.

While doing our ice skates craft one morning we talked about our involvement with the sport. Juliette Gerlach recalled going ice skating at Eisenhower Park and Julia Manganiello shared memories of Belmont Lake. Later in the day, we all enjoyed a video of figure skating which featured Olympic winners Scott Hamilton and Kristi Yamaguchi.

To help us warm up after all that "snow and ice", we had hot chocolate and doughnuts one afternoon as we enjoyed the talents of Richard Katz. Richard's great vocals had us reliving the music of the 40's and 50's and loving every moment. Rae Bailey found the show delightful and sang along with many of the songs. Warming up the dance floor at the performance were Mary Huben and Bobbie Smith.

The team of Vivian and John warmed our hearts. This cute senior couple gave us a warm and fuzzy performance here resulting in many smiles from the appreciative audience, which included Adelaide McKasty and Gilda Messina.

We were pleased to welcome back our good friends from the Seventh Day Adventist Church on the 7th. Their choir comprised of both adults and children filled our hour together with spiritual songs and readings. Virgina Kara and Lee Kulakowski found their program to
be very inspirational.

Frank and Bob gave us a wintry mix of songs on piano and accordion during their January visit. Madeline Pedota and Ruth Faustich knew all the songs and happily sang along to most of them, including, Button Up Your Overcoat.

Juliette Gerlach and George Thogersen enjoyed our salute to Martin Luther King. Our program, which included music, artwork and discussion, was very informative and interactive with guests sharing their knowledge of changes in this country during the civil rights era.

Chinese New Year deserved to be recognizes during the month, as well. We ate oranges for good luck and received red envelopes with coins inside, as is the Chinese tradition. Virginia Kara found a special coin inside hers and was presented with a lucky bamboo plant for her good fortune. Everyone's fortune looked rosy as we received our fortune cookies and read our fortunes aloud. Ruth Beal's fortune certainly came true, as it promised her that her creativity would shine. Indeed, the next day, we all had to agree that she had done an outstanding job at our arts and crafts program!

Fun, too, was our study of the Chinese zodiac, which is based on the year not month of birth. Their zodiac also follows a 12 year cycle with a different animal representing each year. Checking out our birth years, we found Mart Ignelzi to be a loyal dog and Marie Thompson an independent horse. Two guests, Bobbie Smith and Alfred Merrett were born under the same sign as celebrated this year, the dragon, and are known to be lively and courageous.

We baked a most unusual cake this month thanks to the help of Muriel Lizak and Joe D'Angelo. What looked like an ordinary pound cake actually contained a secret ingredient- Sprite soda. We were all a bit skeptical as to how it would taste and sampled it with a bit of caution. To our delight, our cake was simply delicious and earned a definite, bake again rating.

A very special cake appeared on the 26th complete with lots of candles and a big 100 on it. It was presented to Tess Brana on her very special three digit birthday. After singing Happy Birthday, guests broke into a round of applause for this fantastic lady, who, by the way, was able to blow out all her candles with just one breath!

Congratulations go out this month to Muriel Lizak who had the highest bowling score of the month-177. Congratulations also to Marie Thompson who was our bingo winner for January.

As we move into February, we will be learning about the groundhog and will be comparing the springtime predictions of Punxsutawney Phil and our own, Holbrook Hal. We'll be putting our heart and soul into our Valentine's decorations too and creating glamorous masks for Mardi Gras. There will be lots of entertainment as always and surprise events throughout the month.