Spending Thanksgiving with Your Senior Parent

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Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday to slow down and spend some quality time with your senior parent. Whether your parents are living independently or in assisted living, holidays are especially important, and Thanksgiving is often a time they look forward to. 

If you are planning Thanksgiving this year, take some time to think about the best ways to accommodate everyone in your family. This article will discuss a few things to keep in mind for spending Thanksgiving with your senior parent.

Make It Convenient and Comfortable

Thanksgiving should be about traditions, enjoying food, and spending time together. There’s no need to overdo it. Aim to create a convenient and comfortable environment so that your senior parent can enjoy themselves the entire day. 

Thanksgiving should not be a pain or a stressful event, so keep it simple if you can. If your parents are senior living in Rio Rancho, think about moving the meal to them to save them travel time.

Carve Out Time for Family

With the business of the holiday season, it can be easy to get caught up in everything that needs to be done. Don’t let yourself become too busy that you don’t stop to take quality time with the ones you love. 

Make sure that your Thanksgiving schedule has some downtime, so your senior parent has the time they need to catch up with everyone in the family.

Make the Menu Together

If you are hosting Thanksgiving, give your senior parent an opportunity to help out. That could mean help with cooking the meal or deciding what to put on the menu. Even seniors with limited mobility or health challenges can contribute to the family meal. 

Your senior parent has probably attended or hosted many Thanksgivings in their lifetime, so take advantage of their knowledge and wisdom.

Don’t Forget About Nutrition

Thanksgiving is a meal for indulging, but that doesn’t mean nutrition has to go out the window. Nutrition is especially important for seniors, and every meal should include at least some nutritious food. 

You can easily incorporate healthy foods like vegetables into your meal. Your senior parent can enjoy all the turkey they want as well as a serving or two of healthy food.

Make This Thanksgiving Special

The most important part of Thanksgiving is spending time together as a family. For your senior parent in assisted living, there may not be many holidays each year where everyone comes together, so make the most of it. Ensure that your senior parent is included in the planning and that they have ample time to spend with the family. 

With a bit of thoughtfulness, you can make this Thanksgiving special for your senior parent.


Convenient Senior Living Community Located in Rio Rancho, NM

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For many seniors, transitioning to senior living in Rio Rancho can make a world of difference in their quality of life. Assisted living means seniors have less responsibility, more time to do things they enjoy, and convenient access to everything they need. 

This article will discuss a few of the convenient amenities seniors can expect in assisted living.

On-Site Dining

One of the biggest responsibilities of living alone as a senior is cooking. Cooking can take a lot of time and effort between grocery shopping and staying on top of nutritional needs. In senior living, residents have access to delicious meals every day, and no grocery shopping or cooking is required.

Meals are always prepared with nutrition in mind, and the cooking staff can accommodate any dietary restrictions or needs.

Maintenance and Housekeeping

Another reason seniors explore transitioning to senior living is because of the hassle of housework. Home maintenance, such as landscaping and upkeep, in addition to routine housekeeping, can eat into valuable retirement time. 

In assisted living, all maintenance is taken care of, and regular housekeeping services are offered. Seniors can live stress-free without worrying about their yard, roof, or anything in between.

Medical Care

It is a natural part of life that medical needs grow as seniors get older. Traveling to and from doctor appointments can be a pain and deter some seniors from getting the care they need. In assisted living, medical staff is conveniently located onsite to administer medical care of all types. 

Rotating doctors are also available to complete wellness checks and regularly check in with residents. With medical care so close, seniors don’t have to worry about traveling to doctor appointments.

Social Activities

One of the most important things seniors can do for their physical and mental health is to stay social. As seniors age, getting around to different social activities can become more difficult. In a senior living community, residents always have access to social activities just steps from their door. 

Whether it is organized events like game night or a book club or taking an afternoon to catch up over a cup of coffee, residents always feel like they are truly part of a community. Best of all, they don’t have to drive across town or take a bus just to see their friends, as many activities are hosted right on site.

Welcome Home to Convenient Senior Living

The last thing seniors should be doing during retirement is spending it on chores and daily responsibilities. Seniors can drastically reduce their daily responsibilities by moving to a senior living community. A move to senior living gives residents the convenience they deserve during their hard-earned retirement years.


Assisted Living at MorningStar of Happy Valley

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If you are a senior or have a parent or other loved one that needs more daily help to ensure their safety and wellbeing, it may be time to consider senior living communities offering assisted living.  When you begin your search, please add MorningStar of Happy Valley to the top of your list.  Our beautiful community is in a southeastern suburb of Portland next to popular food-cart park, Happy Valley Station and minutes from Clackamas Town Center and other services.

Too often seniors worry that moving into assisted living will result in a loss of independence and freedom.  They are afraid that assisted living communities are cold, institutional places that feel more like a hospital or nursing home. Moreover, many mistakenly believe it will mean a loss of privacy and the ability to make their own decisions. At MorningStar of Happy Valley, this could not be further from the truth. 

What sets MorningStar apart from other assisted living in the area?  Along with spacious private suites in a range of configurations and floor plans, a whole host of resort-style amenities, and five-star dining, our community also provides care services that help our assisted living residents maintain their sense of independence and dignity.  

As we define health and well-being holistically and offer services and programming that supports the whole person: body, mind and spirit, we believe it makes MorningStar a destination for successful aging.  In addition, we have a staff that feels it is a privilege to serve seniors and believes in our core values of love, respect, honesty, fairness, goodness, and kindness.  They also support our mission statement that honors God in our business practices and relationships and values all seniors as gifted and contributing individuals.  

In fact, our goal is to provide a true home for our residents by creating a MorningStar family that includes residents and their families as well as our team members.  In addition to our 61 suites for assisted living, our community has 27 secure suites devoted to the individualized care of residents with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia.  Please contact us to learn more about our amenities, care services, availability and pricing.   

MorningStar takes tremendous pride in the reputation we have earned for excellence and authenticity since our inception in 2003.  We believe the human capacity to grow, to learn and to contribute is ageless; and we act upon that truth daily, as we care for, inspire, and love the residents under our roof. Contact us to learn more about the finest assisted living and memory care in Happy Valley, Oregon.


The Move to MorningStar of Happy Valley

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If you are looking for exceptional senior living, MorningStar of Happy Valley may be your answer. Along with a beautiful interior designed by the award-winning senior interior design company, Thoma-Holec Design, MorningStar of Happy Valley provides an extensive range of amenities, wellness programs, care services and more.   

When a loved one needs more care than they can get in their own home, it may be time to start thinking about a move to assisted living.  If your family is new to the concept of senior living and all it means, please know that MorningStar will work with you each step of the way to help you make informed decisions, and make the eventual move-in process easier.  

To start with, we understand that for your parent or elderly relative, the move is a major lifestyle transition, which is why we approach each move-in with great sensitivity.  One way we do this is to try and nurture a relationship from the start that reinforces the positive aspects of community life and tries to help the person envision the many possibilities of a new adventure.  

Once your family puts down a deposit to secure a chosen suite, our “House to Home” plan goes into full swing.  This starts by collecting pertinent information, agreements and permissions inherent to the move-in including a medical assessment and physician’s care plan for each new assisted living and memory care resident.     

On a more practical level, we offer packing tips including what items are most important to bring such as furnishings and personal belongings that are most significant emotionally, nostalgically as well as functionally.  We want the resident’s new “home” to bring them comfort and joy, which is why we suggest if possible, furnishings should be arranged similar to their prior residence.  Keep in mind; it is especially helpful to those with low vision or cognitive impairment.     

This is just a start of the on-going support we extend to new residents and their families.  We are ready to answer any questions you may have and direct you to our website for contact information as well as other pertinent details.  MorningStar of Happy Valley’s entire team is engaged in finding ways to build a true family, one loving relationship at a time. 

MorningStar of Happy Valley provides the very best in assisted living and memory care with our distinct mission statement “to honor, to serve, to invest.”  Our foundation is built on honoring God, valuing all seniors and selecting staff with a felt calling to serve to create an atmosphere that promotes a healthy, engaged lifestyle.  Visit our website for more information about exceptional senior living at MorningStar.


The Link Between Our Diet and Immune System

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Over the last several years, we have seen firsthand the benefit of having a robust immune system, which is vital to helping resist and combat diseases and illnesses, and a healthy diet plays a role in the proper functioning of our immune system. While food alone doesn’t directly boost the immune system, experts explain “a well-rounded diet can help prevent nutrient deficiencies that can hinder immune function, which in turn helps to ensure our immune system functions smoothly.” 

We all need certain vitamins and minerals in order for our immune cells to grow and function; and nutrient-dense foods help protect our bodies in the event of an invasion of bacteria, fungi or viruses. Likewise there are foods known to be harmful to the immune system.  

Alcoholic beverages are one of those things. If you do drink, it is recommended you limit your daily intake to no more than 12 oz. of beer, 5 oz. of wine and 1.5 oz. of liquor. Another thing to avoid is caffeinated foods or beverages too close to bedtime; and overall the FDA recommends no more than 400 milligrams of caffeine daily. 

Foods high in sugar and salt should also be avoided as well as fast food and processed foods loaded with empty calories, fat and sodium that offer little in the way of needed vitamins and minerals. Dairy products can be problematic for some individuals and lead to inflammation, which in turn affects the immune system. Experts say another good rule is to avoid snack treats with lots of food additives, colorings, and preservatives, which are associated with inflammation, and weaken the immune system. 

At MorningStar of Happy Valley, we recognize that good nutrition is important to the wellbeing of seniors. Residents enjoy seasonal menus that are prepared largely from scratch and feature the freshest ingredients from high-quality producers, locally sourced when possible.  Meals are also modified to include an array of low sodium, sugar free, no sugar added, vegetarian and low-fat choices for residents to self-manage. 

Our beautiful community offers 61 stylish suites for assisted living and another 27 suites devoted to the individualized care of residents with Alzheimer’s or other dementia-related diseases.  Visit our website to see what sets our community apart from other senior living in Happy Valley and why MorningStar is a great place to call home.

MorningStar takes tremendous pride in the reputation we have earned for excellence and authenticity since our inception in 2003.  We believe the human capacity to grow, to learn and to contribute is ageless; and we act upon that truth daily, as we care for, inspire, and love the residents under our roof. Contact us to learn more about the finest senior living in Happy Valley, Oregon.

Source: health.usnews.com/wellness/food/slideshows/foods-that-can-harm-your-immunity


We are Honored to Serve Seniors

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At the MorningStar of Rio Rancho assisted living and memory care community, our team recognizes the highest expression of living is sharing our gifts and talents, time and energy with others. We truly understand serving seniors is a privilege, but nonetheless are pleased to hear residents and their families tell us how much they appreciate the job we are doing. 

One such correspondence we received from a family member moved us with the following: “MorningStar is a wonderful facility with a great, caring staff and top notch amenities.” They went on to say the family was very happy with the transitioning process of their loved one to our community (something we take a great effort with); and were happy with the top notch service they have received since her arrival. The note ended with, “We could not ask for more from the team at MorningStar and look forward to the years to come working with them.”

Another appreciative family member writes, “From the moment I walked into Morningstar for our tour, I felt at home. The residents were enjoying themselves and everyone was friendly.” Most importantly they added, “A week and a half later my mom moved in and is very happy there! 

It is stories like these that humble as well as motivate our dedicated team members. However we additionally welcome comments letting us know what we could do better so we can remedy the situation not only for their family but for future residents and their families. 

Please visit MorningStar of Rio Rancho’s website for contact information regarding the finest senior living in Rio Rancho, NM. Our community offers 51 assisted living suites and our distinct Reflections Neighborhood has another 26 suites devoted to the personalized care of seniors with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. To get a chance to see us up close and personal, we encourage you to schedule a tour. You will find a link to our home to get you started. Also be sure to ask about our Move-in Specials. 


Are You a Procrastinator?

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The Medical News Today (MTN) recently published an article exploring the various reasons we procrastinate. They say we all do it, such as putting off making a doctor appointment or paying a bill but for some people it can be a problem. The article looks at the downside of the habit as well as to see if there is an upside. It explains the changes in our brains, in our minds and what we can do to change the habit. 

Procrastinating occasionally is normal and typically doesn’t cause much disruption in our lives. However the problem becomes detrimental when it is habitual. Studies show approximately 20% of adults in the United States are chronic procrastinators, and also found high levels of procrastination in the workplace can have negative effects on employment duration and income. Habitual procrastinators also report higher levels of stress, anxiety and even sleeping problems. 

Sharon Greene, an LCSW specializing in treating anxiety and depression at Providence Saint John’s Child & Family Development Center in Santa Monica, CA, explains procrastination results from a struggle between a person’s limbic system and prefrontal cortex of the brain. She says the limbic system is an older part of the brain that is automatic and seeks out pleasure and/ or avoids things that cause distress, while the prefrontal cortex helps with planning, decision-making, and long-term goals. Other studies have found “people who often procrastinate have a larger amygdala, the part of the brain responsible for emotions, particularly negative ones.”

Certain conditions such as anxiety disorders, ADHD and depression can make it harder for people to determine the course they should take, resulting in habitual procrastination. Others with addictive tendencies may always wait until the last minute to finish a project or task seeking a “saving the day,” high. Experts say treating the symptoms of these various conditions, may help lessen the tendency toward procrastination. 

Experts say procrastination can be a good thing like when we put off a task to do something we enjoy. If it is a beautiful day, it may be more beneficial to get out and play a round of golf or picnic in the park with your loved ones, than sitting home finishing something that can be done tomorrow. 

If you are searching for senior housing in Rio Rancho, NM, we invite you to take a look at the MorningStar of Rio Rancho assisted living and memory care community. Conveniently located in the northern suburb of Albuquerque, we offer seniors a stylish, comfortable community in which to safely age in place. Visit our website for contact information and be sure to ask about our Move-in Specials.  

Source: medicalnewstoday.com/articles/why-do-we-procrastinate-experts-explain-the-science?utm_source=Sailthru%20Email&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=MNT%20Daily%20News&utm_content=2022-10-22&apid=32549197&rvid=e3b0c44298fc1c149afbf4c8996fb92427ae41e4649b934ca495991b7852b855#What-happens-in-the-brain?


Making the Most of a Visit to a Loved One in an Assisted Living Community

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Especially on birthdays and holidays, many of us wish to brighten the day for a loved one in an assisted living community by letting them know they are very special to us.  To help make our visit more meaningful, experts provide some tips to keep in mind when we visit.  

You may want to plan in advance an activity your loved one would enjoy doing with you during your visit.  Examples include bringing along a puzzle to work on, a Scrabble board or a trivia game.  You could get prints of current photos of the family made to add to an album or to start a new one.  If they are a music lover, bring some new music to enjoy together.  If they love listening to stories, get an audiobook to listen to or buy a favorite family movie to watch together.  If they love sending greeting cards to family and friends, buy a box of cards and help them get them ready to mail.   If they love to be pampered, bring along the supplies to give them a manicure.   

If the weather is cooperative, take advantage of the community’s outdoor area to soak up the sun or take your loved one to a local park and plan to share a simple meal of sandwiches and a drink.  Bringing your kids along automatically provides a more cheerful energy and will give the resident pleasant memories long after the little ones have gone home.   However, do keep in mind that too many visitors at a time can be hectic and it may be better to spread out the visits.

If you do want to bring gifts, remember the person most likely does not have a lot of extra room for anything too big.  Gifts of food are generally welcomed and can be shared with others in the community.  Other tips include not visiting when you are ill, and be sure to wash your hands when you first come in to avoid spreading germs.   

At MorningStar Assisted Living & Memory Care of Happy Valley, we provide lots of activities and programs for our residents, but we know they always look forward to seeing their family.  Our community has beautiful and inviting common areas to enjoy with visiting family and friends.  Please contact us to learn more about our amenities, care services, availability and pricing.   

MorningStar of Happy Valley provides the very best in assisted living and memory care with our distinct mission statement “to honor, to serve, to invest.”  Our foundation is built on honoring God, valuing all seniors and selecting staff with a felt calling to serve to create an atmosphere that promotes a healthy, engaged lifestyle.  Visit our website for more information about exceptional senior living at MorningStar.


Choosing Healthy Snacks

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While most of us love to snack, nutritionists say making poor choices can impact our overall diet and negate the effort we make with healthy breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Lauri Wright, chair of the Department of Nutrition & Dietetics at the University of North Florida, explains snacks should not only satisfy hunger but add to our nutritional intake. Moreover, keep in mind data suggests up to a quarter of our daily calories come from snacking. 

Add to that while our metabolism decreases around 2 percent as we age and we require 150 fewer calories per day each decade after age 20, our nutritional needs do not. Snacking on foods high in sugars and sodium can contribute to a steady weight gain over the years. 

Nutritionists recommend consuming foods low in calories but filling, and to limit yourself to around 100 to 150 calories. Afternoon snacks high in protein such as yogurt or low-fat cottage cheese allow you to feel fuller longer. Studies found those who ate high-protein snacks rather than crackers or chocolate ate up to 100 fewer calories at dinner. 

Fiber is another component to smart snacking. Wright explains, “Fiber aids digestive health and can assist us with blood sugar control and lowering cholesterol.” Good snacks high in fiber include almonds, unsalted soy nuts, berries, carrots with hummus, and whole grain crackers. 

Sugary cookies and candies are loaded with calories and neither fill you up nor add to your daily nutritional intake. Dietary recommendations include avoiding sugar, fried foods and processed foods, which have been shown to trigger fat tissue inflammation, an indicator of heart disease, and worsen arthritis inflammation. 

For trusted assisted living or memory care, we encourage you to consider MorningStar of Happy Valley.  Along with beautiful private suites, we offer residents resort-style amenities and services as well as a range of activities, wellness programs and nutritional, tasty meals.  We believe food is a healing medicine unlike any other and is one of the great joys of living, especially when enjoyed within a community setting.  

The dining service at MorningStar is under the direction of our own Executive Chef.  Residents enjoy seasonal menus that are prepared largely from scratch and are modified to accommodate low sodium, sugar free, no sugar added, vegetarian and low-fat choices so that residents can self-manage any dietary restrictions.  MorningStar also makes it a priority to use foods that have been recognized by the medical community to support brain health and have a high concentration of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory compounds.  Contact us or visit our website for more information.

MorningStar takes tremendous pride in the reputation we have earned for excellence and authenticity since our inception in 2003.  We believe the human capacity to grow, to learn and to contribute is ageless; and we act upon that truth daily, as we care for, inspire, and love the residents under our roof. Contact us to learn more about the finest assisted living and memory care in Happy Valley, Oregon.

Source: aarp.org/health/healthy-living/info-2019/5-ways-to-snack-smarter.html


Are You Looking for Assisted Living in the Happy Valley, Oregon area?

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If you are looking for assisted living in the Happy Valley, Oregon area, MorningStar of Happy Valley is one of the best places to start.  Offering 61 suites for assisted living with a choice of studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom floor plans, we also offer all the amenities and services to ensure your every comfort.  You may recognize the MorningStar name.  In addition to senior living communities throughout the Western U.S., nearby locations include MorningStar of Hillsboro, MorningStar of Beaverton and MorningStar at Laurelhurst, now under construction in Portland.

We encourage you to visit our website as we have lots of information available along with photos that capture the full beauty and inviting warmth of our community.  There you will find a great description of our home, brief comments from our Management Team, a map showing our location as well as pictures to illustrate the detailed attention to our welcoming spaces and beautiful design.  The page also has a button to Amenities and Suite Amenities that describes many of the community’s resort-style amenities and highlights the comforts of our private suites. 

Our private suites have been designed with all the conveniences and safety precautions needed to ensure both your comfort and safety.  Each bathroom is handicapped accessible, and all apartments have an emergency call system.   Throughout our large common areas just some of the amenities include a bistro, general store, chapel/theater, massage room, salon, and fitness room.  To enjoy the outdoors, we offer raised garden beds, strolling paths and courtyard with a barbecue and fire pit.

As a resident in assisted living, your care plan will be based on a thorough assessment of your medical history and personal preferences, and routinely evaluated to ensure it is relevant to your care needs.  Range of services include assisting residents with the activities of daily living (ADLs) as well as life enrichment activities and wellness programs.  Also, families get peace of mind knowing trained care managers are there to help navigate any changes in the health and wellbeing of their loved one.   

Please visit our website for contact information and give us a call to inquire about availability and pricing or connect with us online.  We look forward to meeting you and your family.   

MorningStar of Happy Valley represents the very best in senior living with our distinct mission statement of “to honor, to serve, to invest.” We provide a true home for residents amidst a beautiful, serene setting by creating a foundation built on honoring God, valuing all seniors and selecting staff with a felt calling to serve. Contact us to learn more about our exceptional assisted living and memory care community.