December 2014

The Holiday Season has always been a busy time at Park Village Pines and 2014 proved to be no exception. We kicked off our Christmas celebrations on November 25th, with the 3rd Annual Nutcracker Tea Party. This event is unique and a definite favorite among our residents. During the second week of December we held our Christmas Dinners. Families, friends and other loved ones joined our residents for a special evening.

Throughout the month of December we hosted several music programs and special events including The Singing Crusaders, the Kalamazoo Christian Middle & High School Bands, as well as other favorites. This year we also had some younger guests, we decorated Christmas Cookies with our 4th grade students from Heritage Christian Academy. We also had several GEM Girls clubs come in to put on special programs or carol through our hallways.  We will wrap up our busy month with a special Christmas Eve Service led by our Chaplin Jim Wessing and our 2014 New Years Eve party.

—Arielle, Activities

In the month of December we have many joyous happenings! On select days we will be celebrating Christmas with our residents and their families. It’s a wonderful party that the activities plan as well as the dining staff. I hear there are a lot of people that like to show up. So don’t forget to reserve your seat for our Park Village Pines Christmas Party. Stay safe on the roads, and have a Happy December everyone!

—Emily, Dining Services

November 2014

In November we celebrated Thanksgiving at Park Village Pines. On Thanksgiving Day the residents AND the staff were able to partake in a thanksgiving meal consisting of turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, and pumpkin pie. Many of our residents went out for the day to celebrate with their families but the ones that stayed home didn’t feel any less loved because of our staff.

—Emily, Dining Services

October 2014

Saturday, October 4th Park Village Pines hosted its 3rd annual Fall Harvest Festival. Despite chilly & wet weather we had a great turnout. Residents, staff, family and friends enjoyed the hayrides and the chili and cornbread fare. The local bluegrass band Bet Your Bottom $ which regularly visits our campus was also a hit. Our younger (and also younger at heart!) guests enjoyed playing a game in which they bobbed for donuts and also enjoyed getting their faces painted. One resident family said that they have been to all of our Harvest Festivals and look forward to them each year. The day was filled with the blessings and beauty of the harvest season.

—Arielle, Activities Department

My name is Emily and I work in Dining Services at Park Village Pines. Every day I enjoy seeing how our employees work together to provide the best service for our residents. I also enjoy the relationships that I and all of the employees form with these wonderful seniors.

There are three different functions in the Dining Services Department: the kitchen (food preparation), dining halls (food service), and the Café (the gathering area where residents, their families, and employees can purchase the fare of the day).

Our food servers take orders, deliver the meals and then clear and clean the tables. The other day when Noelle was cleaning up after a meal in Crystal Woods (our memory care unit), she connected so well with one of our residents that this lady started clapping her hands with joy. She was so happy to see Noelle that it made her day special.

In the Café the counter faces five different tables with three chairs at each table. Several weeks ago this area was the location where a resident and her family had a family reunion, “picnic style.” This resident was overjoyed to be with members of her family she hadn’t seen in a while.

I also saw another wonderful family gathering in the Café recently.   A resident wanted her family to join her for dinner in the Dining Room recently. Normally family members sit at with residents at their tables there, but when there are more than three guests seating is difficult.  One of our servers, Jamie, was working that day and quickly realized that it this larger group would have a better time sitting in the Café as there was more room for them there.  She went above and beyond the call of duty to serve them across the hall in the same high quality manner as if they were sitting in the Dining Room, not the easiest thing to accomplish because of the logistics.  She continually was walking across the hall to take appetizer, entrée, and dessert orders as well as to refill beverages (all the while continuing to serve other residents in the Dining Room).  This family felt like they had their own special meal in a room reserved just for them.

When they left, without being asked Jamie cleaned up the Cafe just as if it were the Dining Room, her area of responsibility.  And she did it with a smile!!

—Emily, Dining Services