Frost Manor residents make special tree, enjoy turkey dinner to mark Thanksgiving

While it has been a challenging year, residents are still thankful for the important things

Although the global COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for everyone for the past seven months, Frost Manor residents still feel blessed for many things and took time before the Thanksgiving holiday to reflect on what makes them most grateful.

The result was a paper “Thanksgiving tree” they made as a craft. Each of the leaves contains residents’ thankful thoughts.

“Some of the things they were thankful for were friends, family and thankful for the loving staff – it’s all about the people who are important to them,” Frost Manor life enrichment co-ordinator Lyndsay Burton tells The OMNIway.

Of course, no Thanksgiving would be complete without a traditional meal, so on Monday the nutritional care department served up a roast turkey dinner with all the trimmings, including mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie.

As with all mealtimes since the pandemic began, residents were served Thanksgiving dinner in two seatings for safety. There are also Plexiglas dividers between residents so they can still share meals while adhering to social distancing requirements.

There was also a special Thanksgiving-style bingo where team members gave away treats as prizes. Residents played to win chocolate bars, potato chips, Cheezies, word search books or plastic jewelry.

“It was a different Thanksgiving this year, but the residents still enjoyed it,” Lyndsay says.

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Short-stay visits have had a positive impact on Frost Manor residents: LEC

Since restrictions have eased, many residents have enjoyed time outside the home with their families

Being able to do something as simple as spending an hour in a local park with family members has made a world of difference to Frost Manor residents, says life enrichment co-ordinator (LEC) Lyndsay Burton.

Lyndsay says many Frost Manor residents have taken advantage of short-stay visits with their families since the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care eased restrictions in August.

“So far, short-stay visits are going very well,” Lyndsay tells The OMNIway. “They have been so great for the residents (and) for their mental health.”

A press release issued by the ministry on Aug. 28 states that residents may now leave their long-term care home “for day trips or overnight absences.”

Overnight absences are permitted at the discretion of each long-term care home and are evaluated on a case-by-case basis, the ministry’s statement says.

During these short-stay visits, residents and family members wear face masks and practise social distancing.

When the global COVID-19 pandemic began in March, the Frost Manor team organized video calls between residents and their family members. As restrictions on visits eased in phases over summer, residents met outdoors with their loved ones and eventually inside the Lindsay long-term care home once in-house visits resumed.

Being able to leave the home with their loved ones for short periods of time has meant a lot to residents, Lyndsay says.

“They’ve been able to go and look at the fall colours, they’ve been able to go for a drive-thru meal,” she says. “A lot of the residents and their families have been using our beautiful park spaces to go and sit and visit with each other.”

Some families have been creative in coming up with ways to safely meet with residents, Lyndsay notes.

“They’ve been doing a lot of tailgate parties in the parking lot, so families will come with camp chairs and coffee and we’ll bundle the residents up and assist them out to the parking lot,” Lyndsay says.

“They’ve been inventive in the ways they get to visit with each other,” she says.

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Resident fortune teller gives Frost Manor carnival an added boost of fun and laughter

Heather Marshall was a ‘natural’ at playing the part during the home’s carnival-themed month, say staff

One of the key factors that made Frost Manor’s carnival-themed month in August so successful was the high degree of resident involvement, and resident Heather Marshall filling in as a fortune teller was a memorable part of the event, says Frost Manor life enrichment co-ordinator Lyndsay Burton.

The idea to have a fortune teller during the carnival came from residents’ council president Diane Hickman who was initially going to play the part.

However, Diane couldn’t be the fortune teller on the designated day, so Heather, who serves as the council’s treasurer, filled in and did a stellar job, Lyndsay says.

Working with life enrichment aide Amy Whitehead, Heather read Tarot cards and looked into a crystal ball to tell residents and staff members what the future had in store for them.

“Amy said that Heather was a ‘natural’ in the role and really embraced the spirit of fun and laughter to put on a fun resident-led program for her fellow residents,” Lyndsay tells The OMNIway.

“Amy noted there was lots of laughs and intrigue, as some of the fortunes told were hilariously accurate. We were so happy that Heather took on the role and had so much fun doing it.”

In February, Heather was crowned Miss Frost Manor during a pageant the Lindsay, Ont. long-term care home hosted.

Lyndsay says Heather has done a great job fulfilling her duties as the home’s pageant queen.

“She really truly embraces the spirit of leadership and friendship that embodies the role as Miss Frost Manor,” Lyndsay says.

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LEA Sarah Thayer’s balloon art continues to be a huge hit with Frost Manor residents and staff

‘So much laughter and smiles have been created with a lot of talent and a few balloons’

Residents and staff members at Frost Manor just can’t get enough of the animal-shaped balloons life enrichment aide (LEA) Sarah Thayer makes.

A talented balloon artist, Sarah’s first job was with Supernova Fireworks, where she put her talents to work by creating balloon art for parties and events.

Since starting her position at Frost Manor in spring, she has been making an assortment of balloon animals the residents enjoy, including balloons shaped like turtles, pigs, octopuses, giraffes, snails and the residents’ favourite, penguins, as part of programming at the Lindsay, Ont. long-term care home.

“The residents and staff just love watching Sarah create her various animals,” says Frost Manor life enrichment co-ordinator Lyndsay Burton.

“She has really risen to the occasion to be able to put on such a unique program for our residents.”

Frost Manor hosted a carnival-themed month throughout August, and Sarah got to show her talent for balloon making by creating an array of animal-shaped balloons.

Lyndsay says residents have asked Sarah to make more balloon animals, so the life enrichment team has added more dates to the program calendar.

Lyndsay says it’s not just the residents who are enjoying Sarah’s balloon talents.

“The staff have really enjoyed joining in on the fun,” she says. “So much laughter and smiles have been created with a lot of talent and a few balloons.”

This is Part 2 of a two-part story.

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Animal balloon-making talents helped LEA land a position at Frost Manor

After LEC Lyndsay Burton saw this skill on Sarah Thayer’s CV, she wanted to learn more

Back in the spring, Frost Manor life enrichment co-ordinator (LEC) Lyndsay Burton was going through resumés, looking to hire a new part-time life enrichment aide (LEA), when she came across a CV with an interesting skill listed: animal balloon maker.

The resumé belonged to Sarah Thayer, and Lyndsay immediately wanted to learn more about her.

“Her first job was making balloon animals for events and parties and things like that, and I really had to pick her brain about that,” Lyndsay tells The OMNIway.

Lyndsay contacted Sarah and asked her to come to the Lindsay long-term care home for an interview.

It turned out Sarah is a self-taught animal balloon maker, learning the tricks of the trade by watching online videos.

Lyndsay knew Sarah would fit into the Frost Manor team and hired her in May.

Sarah’s balloon-making skills have been put to good use at Frost Manor. The home hosted a carnival-themed month throughout August and Sarah got to show her talent. Her animal balloons were a hit with residents and staff alike.

Balloon making is one of many avenues where Sarah has shown her creative flair, Lyndsay says, adding Sarah has also wowed the folks at Frost Manor by making flowers out of napkins.

“She has come to the team with so many ideas … (and) having Sarah here has created a really well-rounded team for us,” she says.

This is Part 1 of a two-part story.

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Frost Manor becomes a ‘big-top tent’ in August

The ongoing pandemic has meant team members have had to tap into their creativity to develop fun, yet safe, activities for residents

Frost Manor has been transformed into a “big-top tent” throughout August and residents of the Lindsay, Ont. long-term care home could not be happier.

The life enrichment team has decorated the main lounge and small dining room to look like a carnival. Staff members have decorated the walls with images of a ferris wheel, roller coasters and a merry-go-round.

“We have tried to make it look like a carnival in here,” life enrichment co-ordinator Lyndsay Burton says.

Every year the Frost Manor life enrichment team treats residents to a month-long themed event that embraces the OMNI Health Care core value of fun and laughter.

This year the life enrichment team elected to create a carnival atmosphere throughout August that includes a variety of activities the team has developed to engage residents.

There have been many games and events the team has created that have a carnival theme, and prizes – such as chocolate bars or Cheezies – have been a favourite part of the events for residents, Lyndsay says.

“For the whole month we’ve tried to gear towards having a lot of prizes for the residents to win, and after they win a prize the residents get to spin a prize wheel which will determine the prize they receive,” Lyndsay explains.

Lyndsay says creating the carnival-themed month has been a learning curve for the life enrichment team because of protocols in place due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, but everyone has adapted well.

She adds that the pandemic has also resulted in the team having to think outside the box in order to create meaningful, fun, yet safe, activities for residents.

“COVID has put a bit of a damper on entertainment, so we have really tried to pull together our creative side and make sure that they’re still able to have fun and exciting programs for the summer,” Lyndsay says.

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Frost Manor residents treated to a carnival-themed month

Frost Manor resident Dorothy Burrows and life enrichment aide Sarah Thayer share a laugh during Carnival Month at the Lindsay long-term care home.

With safety measures in place, life enrichment team members have organized a month-long series of activities for residents that embrace the spirit of fun and laughter

It’s that time of year again at Frost Manor when the Lindsay, Ont. long-term care home’s residents are treated to a month-long themed event that embraces the OMNI Health Care core value of fun and laughter. Read more

Frost Manor celebrates Canada Day with photoshoots for residents

Frost Manor resident Mary Lee Digiacomo, who was named Frost Manor’s 2020 Ms. Canada, shows her Canadian pride on July 1.

Team members name resident Mary Lee Digiacomo Frost Manor’s 2020 Ms. Canada

Canada Day celebrations were different at Frost Manor this year, but despite protocols in place to keep everyone safe during the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, the Lindsay long-term care home’s residents still celebrated Canada’s 153rd birthday with lots of fun and laughter. Read more

New visitation rules helped make a happy Father’s Day at Frost Manor

Pictured above, the front window at Frost Manor was decorated for window visits in May.

The Ontario government has eased some restrictions in LTC homes to allow safe outdoor visits between residents and their loved ones

It was certainly a happy Father’s Day at Frost Manor. Read more

Frost Manor helping residents make the most of the home’s therapy garden

Since opening June 9, residents, accompanied by staff, have been able to enjoy the garden area and participate in some outdoor programming

Summer is here, the weather is warmer, and Frost Manor’s colourful therapy garden is now open. Read more