Getting older but not feeling old

Jill Ballard of Randolph Township, a community of about 500 residents in southeast Minnesota, says one of the positives of aging is having the time to more fully embrace life. “Having time to explore new things, volunteer, enjoy my family and teach fifth-grade church school is the best part about getting older,” says Jill. “The…

Helping others is the best part

“The reward in the long run is worth every bit of time put into your job,” says Julia Urdahl, a CNA at Prairie Pines Community Assisted Living in Fosston, Minnesota.  Julia’s grandmother was a RN and told Julia that if she wanted to go into nursing, she needed to work as a CNA at a…

Celebrating Older Americans Month

May is Older Americans Month, a time to celebrate the many ways seniors have helped build our families, cities, industries and quality of life. Their dreams, hard work and love have created a legacy we now enjoy – and they’re just getting started. As Minnesota’s aging population grows more rapidly than ever before, older adults…

Caring for seniors through integrative therapy

Kendra Willey said she was employed from the time she was 14 years old, but she never really loved work—until she started working with seniors. A friend recommended that Kendra work as a dietary aid in college, and she began working at a skilled nursing facility in Bloomington, Minnesota. “I looked forward to going to…

Putting it all together

When was the last time you put together a puzzle?  When I was growing up, my father and many of my six siblings spent hours working on puzzles. As the family rebel, I found it pointless to spend time making something that was just going to be taken apart and put back in a box.…

Announcing Principle 3: We all prosper when seniors stay in their communities

Principle 3 of the five guiding Face Aging Principles affirms that we all prosper when seniors stay in their communities. Our parents and grandparents want to live as independently as possible in the communities they love, and our communities thrive when they have a vibrant senior population. State strategies should encourage the best choices for…

Simply enjoy the holidays with your senior loved ones

One of my residents told me when she was a child, Santa Claus gave her an orange. She was so proud of that orange, she said, that she saved it and never ate it. Such a simple gift, yet it was so special to her. The greatest gift you can give your aging loved ones…

The sweet reward of a trick-or-treat meet and greet

Every year on Halloween, residents’ family, friends and community members visit Lakeview Methodist with their young Power Rangers and princesses in tow. Residents pass out candy to the kids, visiting with loved ones and meeting new people while enjoying the energy and excitement. It’s amazing what joy children can bring. They’re so good for our…

The Luck of the Irish (or in this case, a Scot)

              I’m not Irish as far as I know, but I do consider myself lucky. After all, I’m still here at 95! And as luck would have it, my granddaughter Monica was born on St. Patrick’s Day. Monica has always been feisty, and now she’s an aeronautical engineer and…

Occasionally caring for grandkids could boost your longevity

New research published in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior suggests that seniors who occasionally help care for grandkids tend to live longer than seniors who do not care for young relatives. Study participants who did not have grandchildren but supported others in their community like adult children or neighbors also tended to live longer…

Giving up the car keys

To many older people, and younger ones, too, driving is an active symbol of independence. Giving up the keys is a huge event, and one with which loved ones struggle. If you are concerned about an aging relative’s ability to drive safely, it is critically important to address the issue before an accident happens. In…