10 Activities to Enjoy with your Grandchildren this Summer

10 Activities to Enjoy with your Grandchildren this Summer

Grandmother playing with grandson

The summer season is upon us: rays of sunshine, chirping birds and blooming flowers! This time of year also brings more daylight hours to enjoy with your grandchildren and loved ones. So, what are some ideas to enjoy both the great outdoors and the company of your grandchildren? Read below!

Lemonade Stand

Set up a lemonade stand! You’ll be able to make the refreshing summer drink together and share it with others! Not only will passersby enjoy a fresh glass, but you’ll enjoy every moment of the experience with your grandchild!

Cloud Watching

Who needs a book when you can glance up at the sky on a warm, summer day and make stories out of the clouds? Encourage the children to use their imaginations!

 Ice Cream Sundae

“I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!” Nothing says summer like an ice cream sundae! Gather your grandchildren together to create the wonderful treat – don’t forget the whipped cream, cherries and chocolate syrup!

Picnic in the Backyard

You don’t have to go far to have a picnic… try your backyard or local park! Pack a picnic basket full of your favorite lunch items and head outdoors!

Art Projects

Get out your art supplies! How about painting a birdhouse or even painting watercolor portraits of each other – the sillier the better!

Teach your Grandchild a Hobby

Do you have a favorite hobby you want to pass on to your grandchild? If so, share your talents such as crocheting, woodworking, cooking, etc. Your grandchild will hold these memories for a lifetime!

Sidewalk Chalk

This is a summer favorite for many children. Head outdoors with a bucket full of chalk and make designs on the sidewalk! The more colorful the better!

Fly a Kite

Did your grandchild come to visit, but it’s extra windy outside? Make the most of it by flying a kite high in the sky! Take turns guiding the kite through the air.

Watch a Sunset or Sunrise

Grab a blanket, head outdoors and watch one of nature’s most beautiful scenes!

Pictures

During all of your adventures, be sure to take as many photos as possible so that at the end of summer you and your grandchild can create a scrapbook together!

 

Welcome to American House West Bloomfield

Have you recently toured our American House West Bloomfield community? If not, you’re highly encouraged to do so! Many renovations have occurred to include the addition of an Anytime Café and upgrades to the dining room, activity room, lobby fireplace, furniture and much more.

Here’s a sneak peak of the renovations!

Anytime Café

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Lobby 

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American House West Bloomfield is ideally situated near family, friends, shopping and familiar medical professionals in West Bloomfield, Farmington Hills and Novi. Hospitals in the area include Henry Ford Bloomfield Hospital, Beaumont and Botsford Hospitals. The community provides independent living with assistance available.

Floor plan options include studios, one- and two-bedroom apartments with full kitchens, living rooms and private baths. We also have a community dining room – restaurant-style dining is available for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Residents also enjoy an on-site beauty salon/barber shop, fitness/wellness center, computer room and more.

In addition, a life enrichment director plans a wide range of cultural, social and recreational programming. Resident services also include 24-hour on-site staff and scheduled transportation. Laundry and housekeeping services are also available.

Schedule a tour today – call (248) 436-4097

Are you or your loved one already living at American House West Bloomfield? If so, remember the Resident Referral Program! Refer someone to American House and when they move in, get $500 off your rent for the month!

Small Donations. Big Impact.

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During the 8th Annual Chili Cook-off, American House East I raised $1,107.00 in only two hours!

For the past eight years, American House East I has sponsored a chili cook-off to raise money for the American House Foundation.

Each year great care is taken to ensure that the event is fun, delicious, entertaining and charitable. This year was no exception! Delicious aromas of warm chili lingered, and jovial conversations could be heard throughout the dining area.

Participants sampled over 15 chilis paired with cornbread, fresh cut onions, sour cream and cheese. After trying the spectacular chili varieties, participants voted on their favorite. The people’s choice winner received a $50 visa gift card and two Detroit Tigers baseball tickets. Additionally, a panel of judges chose winners in the categories of White Meat, Red Meat, Vegetarian and Wild Game. Each winner also received a $50 visa gift card and two Detroit Tigers baseball tickets.

And, guess what? The official Detroit Tigers mascot, Paws joined the fun! He was sure to meet, greet and dance with American House East I residents, as well as take photos with the many children in the crowd!

Thank you for putting on a spectacular event to benefit local seniors in need!

American House Foundation

For more than 30 years, American House has been an advocate for the elderly in their own communities, but in 2007, the founding family wanted to reach beyond their own borders to support seniors in need outside the safety and care of American House communities.

Many older adults in the Detroit area are suffering needlessly. They are left alone and forced to choose between food and heat, medication and housing. These are choices no one should have to make, especially in later life. American House, created the American House Foundation in partnership with the Institute of Gerontology at Wayne State University, to help put an end to these significant aging issues.

Gifts that are generously donated to the American House Foundation will provide hope and preserve the dignity of older adults enduring hardship. 70% of gifts received by the American House Foundation will go directly to helping seniors today. 30% of gifts received by the American House Foundation will fund research for a better tomorrow.

Make American House Bonita Springs Your New Home!

Are you a Florida resident? If so, we will soon be opening the perfect new home for you… American House Bonita Springs!

Over time, the financial costs and physical strain of owning a home or condo can become overwhelming. Making the decision to move into a rental senior housing community can go a long way in helping to alleviate some of that stress. Most often, many utilities that are additional monthly expenses, like water, gas and electric, are included in your rent. There are no maintenance costs, like mowing the lawn, fixing a leaky roof or replacing a hot water heater. Moving into a senior living community means that all those maintenance issues – indoor and outdoor – are taken care of for you! This means less stress and more time to enjoy your family and friends. And those social gatherings you’re always hearing about? Well, those are usually free too!

The decision to transition to a senior housing community can be a difficult one – you’ve spent many years in your family home and created special memories that last a lifetime. Let American House Bonita Springs help you create new memories!

Maintenance-free Living

American House Bonita Springs is a completely maintenance-free senior housing community:

  • Full-time, on-site maintenance: Consider the on-site maintenance staff as your personal ‘handyman’ ready to take care of any task big or small.
  • Kitchen appliance upkeep: Most apartments in American House Bonita Springs have full kitchens. So what happens if you’re having problems with your stove or refrigerator? Don’t worry! These big ticket items won’t put a strain on your budget, rather the on-site team will do what’s necessary to repair or replace your appliances!
  • Worry-free travel: Leaving on vacation to travel across town or to a different state? You’ll have peace of mind knowing your home will be just as it was when you left.

Life Enrichment

There’s never a dull moment at American House Bonita Springs. Someone is always there to share a laugh with you, catch up on the latest TV show, or take a walk around the neighborhood. Moving into a senior living community allows for plenty of socialization and new friends! At American House Bonita Springs, the community is full of things to do: swimming, cultural outings, crafts, music, food – it’s limitless.

The perks of living at American House Bonita Springs outweigh the potentially difficult decision of moving into a senior housing community. With maintenance-free living and several options to keep you active and engaged, American House Bonita Springs may be the perfect place for you!

7 Ways To Make Your New Senior Living Community Feel Like Home

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You’ve spent many years in your family home and enjoyed watching your children and perhaps even your great grandchildren grow. There, you’ve created special memories that last a lifetime. As you transition from your home rich with memories of the past, American House is with you every step of the way to help you create memories of the future. To make your new house feel like home, try these seven steps today!

DECORATE, DECORATE, DECORATE!

First and foremost, where you live isn’t a home until you make it yours. For example, hang photos or display photo albums on your coffee table. Bring your curtains and bedding from your previous home to showcase in your new apartment. Want more inspiration? Here are 15 Easy and Inexpensive Redecorating Tips to help you get started!

MAKE NEW FRIENDS

It can be difficult moving somewhere new, but it’s a great opportunity to meet new people and make new memories! One of the many advantages of living in a senior living community is the closeness and easy interaction with your neighbors. You’ll never know who you’ll meet and what interesting stories they have — like our very own American House resident, Bob the Boat Builder.

PARTICIPATE IN ACTIVITIES

American House Senior Living Communities offer regular outings and activities for our residents. They enjoy unique, cultural and multi-generational activities and seasonal events like these fun summer activities. Make sure to sign up and join in!

INVITE YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS TO VISIT

Invite your loved ones over to visit and give them a tour of your new home and community! Take them to the dining are or Anytime Café to relax and have a cup of coffee or venture out and explore the area! Our American House communities are located in great areas with plenty to see and do.

GET NEW ADDRESS LABELS

It may seem insignificant, but ordering your own personalized return address labels can make your new apartment feel like home! Plus, they will come in handy when you send cards and letters to friends and family.

PURCHASE HOUSE PLANTS

Plants can give a home a cozy and welcoming atmosphere and make for colorful decorations. If you’re so inclined, go ahead and start a gardeneven if the plants are artificial!

BRING YOUR PET

Pets are great companions. If your senior living community is pet-friendly (most of the American House Senior Living Communities are), then it may be time to go pet shopping if you don’t have a furry friend already. You’ll have a new friend and be able to reap these other Top 10 Benefits of Pet Ownership for Seniors.

AMERICAN HOUSE

We encourage our residents to make themselves at home, which is why these 7 Ways to Make your New Senior Living Community Feel Like Home are so important. Give us a call today at (248) 579-4422 or visit www.americanhouse.com to set up your tour today so you can start envisioning ways to make your new home “yours.”

5 Festive Halloween Door Decorating Ideas from Pinterest

If you’re looking to get into the Halloween spirit without (or in addition to) carving the ol’ jack-o-lantern, there are oodles of ideas out there on how to decorate your door. Scary? Funny? Crafty? Colorful? We’ve collected 5 Festive Halloween Door Decorating Ideas from Pinterest that will have your neighbors asking you for ideas next year!

And, there’s a door decorating idea for everyone — from the person who doesn’t have the time or energy to do much detailed decorating to the person who turns their home into an orange-and-black tribute:

Because You Don’t Want to be Left Out:

Photo credit:  pinterest.com

This Halloween door decoration idea is SIMPLE. As in, grab some scissors, construction paper and tape and you’re done — plus, it’s not time-intensive. If you’re not really sure how to decorate your door or you aren’t really a Halloween-y person, this is the one for you. Surprise all who come to your door by cutting out big googly eyes and a startled mouth to create a Ghost Face.

In the Spirit, but Not Too Crafty:

Pinterest Door MummySay you love the season leading up to Oct. 31 every year, but you’re not the type to accumulate glitter pumpkins or make intricate Halloween scenes. No worries — just take a roll or two of toilet paper and turn your front door into a Mummy.  Grab some black, white and purple (or yellow, or orange, or green) construction paper and make some really big eyes for your mummy.

Creative, Whimsical and Comical:

Pinterest Door WitchBetween miscellaneous items you already have and a quick trip to the dollar store (or Halloween costume shop), you can create an entertaining door decoration sure to bring smiles to your guests’ faces! Items needed: Witch hat; gloves; a black cape (or garbage bag), some colorful striped tights and a pair of black ballet flats or witchy boots. Arrange and adhere the items to your door and — presto! — it looks like the Wicked Witch crashed into your door! Don’t forget the broom.

Martha-Stewart-in-Training:

Pinterest Door BooIf you’re the crafty type, it’ll probably take you no time at all to create this darling “BOO” door hanging . The best part is, every person who makes this will create a completely different look. Head to your local craft store to pick out some wooden letters, and then use Mod Podge to stick some decorative scrapbook paper to the letters. Once you have turned the letters into your own style, tie them together and you have a cute Halloween door hanging to use for years to come.

Wreath Lovers Unite:

Pinterest Door WreathAre you a fan of holiday wreaths? Then this one is for you! Quoth the raven, “Nevermore.” — A wreath paying homage to Edgar Allan Poe speaks to the more intense side of Halloween. It’s classic, yet meaningful and stylish at the same time. And, it’s just the kind of thing you can create yourself with this detailed tutorial.

Halloween at American House

AH haunted house blog picAt American House Troy, residents and staff members are working together for the fourth year in a row to create a haunted house inside their community! Executive Director Debbie Smith said everyone is working on turning one apartment into a real haunted house for residents, their friends and family, and the public to enjoy. Stop by later this month and see what the collaborative effort cooked up!

We have plenty of fun activities at our American House communities that make us unique. Give us a call at (248) 579-4422 or visit www.americanhouse.com to schedule a tour today!

Detroit Symphony Orchestra Brings Music to American House Residents’ Ears

i3_jvPUpwz_K5wkPrRDKzL3Fib5YzAILzgySvI5xcCoBeing able to experience the wonderful culture of the area — especially the Detroit Symphony Orchestra — is one of the great benefits of living at American House Senior Living Communities! We’re very proud to have deepened our partnership with the DSO to present 36 engagements in 2013 where musicians will perform for residents at more than 20 of our American House locations.

“We’re committed to enriching the lives of our senior citizens throughout the area,” said Rob Gillette, chief operating officer of American House. “Countless studies have shown the benefits of both music and a rich social life in older adults. We are confident this partnership will prove beneficial for both our seniors and the DSO musicians themselves.”

Each month, three American House communities will host the DSO sessions for residents. Three to four DSO musicians will play for one hour at the community and residents have the opportunity to talk to the musicians during a meet and greet afterward. American House sponsors the sessions so residents are able to enjoy the DSO free of charge.

DSO musicians will also present “Inspiration Days,” in which American House residents will learn more about these artists’ paths to becoming professional musicians, hear and watch them demonstrate their instruments and have the opportunity to ask questions.

DSO PERFORMS AT AMERICAN HOUSE

Here is a list of American House Senior Engagement locations, where the Detroit Symphony Orchestra musicians will perform. April and May locations have been confirmed, but look for DSO ensembles to visit your local American House throughout the coming year!

APRIL 2013

  • Sterling II: 2 p.m. Monday, April 8 at 33433 Schoenherr, Sterling Heights, MI 48312.
  • Baldwin House: 2:30 p.m. Monday, April 15 at 200 Chester, Birmingham, MI 48009.
  • Riverview: 2:30 p.m. Monday, April 22 at 20300 Fort St, Riverview, MI 48193.

MAY 2013

  • Carpenter: 2 p.m. Monday, May 13 at 3470 Carpenter Road, Ypsilanti, MI 48197
  • Hazel Park: 2:00 p.m. Monday, May 20 at 777 E. Woodward Heights, Hazel Park, MI 48030
  • Sterling I: 2:00 p.m. Friday, May 31 at 11255 15 Mile Road, Sterling Heights, MI 48312
  • **INSPIRATION DAYS: 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 28 at Dearborn Heights: 26600 Ann Arbor Trail, Dearborn Heights, MI 48127

** “Inspiration Days” are visits where residents learn about the artists’ paths to becoming professional musicians, hear and watch them demonstrate their instruments and have the opportunity to ask questions.

For more information about the DSO partnership or the current performance schedule, please call (248)203-1800, or visit www.americanhouse.com
or www.dso.org.

5 Important Steps to Find the Best Assisted Living Community

All homes are not the same and all assisted living communities are not the same, either: They each offer their own specialized care options and varied levels of care. At American House, we know choosing the right assisted living community for you or your loved one can be a daunting process — but we’d like to make things easier.

When searching for the best assisted living community, we urge you to take the following five steps:

1. SPRING A SURPRISE VISIT

Do some research and find a few assisted living communities to check out. Ask for recommendations from friends, family and co-workers. Once you’ve scoped out a few communities online or by phone, gathering information on prices, services and amenities, you can also visit their Facebook pages to see what others have to say.

Don’t forget to read online reviews as well. You can read some reviews from American House residents here and here.

Then, to really get a feel for the community, ask if you can make an unannounced visit or schedule a tour. Stay for a meal in the dining room to taste the quality of the food and see what the everyday dining experience is like. Pay attention to cleanliness, how the staff interacts with residents and whether residents appear relaxed.

At American House, we’d love to have you stop by anytime! When you schedule a tour, you can enjoy our delicious apple pie as you dine with residents.

2. ASK IMPORTANT QUESTIONS

Arrive armed with a list of questions and don’t be afraid to demand answers! Ask if the community is licensed to do business as an assisted care center — and follow up with the state health department to confirm. Another important question to ask is whether there is security in the community.

Find out if there is a doctor on site or if you can receive care from your current provider. Ask if on-site physical, speech and occupational therapists are available — and if not, if transportation to your particular specialist is provided.

At American House, we know that figuring out what to ask can be overwhelming, so we’ve compiled a list of the Top 16 Tips for Choosing a Senior Living Community, along with the Top 10 Principles to Look for When Choosing a Senior Living Community.

3. FIND OUT ABOUT HIDDEN FEES

Some services offered by assisted living facilities are not apparent upfront, and fees related to such care are not always covered by services like Medicare or Medicaid. Long-term care insurance will often reimburse for assisted care, but you’ll have to check the terms of your policy.

Find out what exactly is included in your rate: Charges for medications given per day; admission or community fees; a la carte fees; rate raises. Use our list of the Top 16 Tips for Choosing a Senior Living Community to help guide your questions about hidden fees.

At American House, we offer varying services and would love the opportunity to talk to you about options.

4. ASK ABOUT TRANSPORTATION SERVICES

According to the Fox Business article, Nancy Thompson — a spokeswoman for AARP — said many seniors overlook the importance of transportation when comparing assisted living communities.

While some communities have their own vans to transport residents to weekly trips and social outings, some charge extra for other trips — so ask what is included. At American House, we offer personal and scheduled transportation — including trips to malls, banks, grocery stores and pharmacies, along with trips to senior centers, museums and other group outings.

5. DOES THE COMMUNITY MEET YOUR NEEDS

HP_Exterior_2011Each person wants and requires different amenities — and with their assisted living communities. You may need specialized care, certain kinds of medical attention, plenty of socialization options or other preferences for your new home.

The best way to find out if a community fits your specific needs is to investigate several of them before deciding. That way, you can feel confident you made the best decision and move forward with getting comfortable in your new home!

To find out more about becoming a resident at American House, call us today at (248) 579-4422 or visit www.americanhouse.com.

American House Choir performs Christmas carols all around town

“Deck the halls with boughs of holly, fa-la-la-la-la, la la la la.” Admit it: You started singing along in your head, didn’t you? There’s just something about music that makes people smile — it doesn’t matter if you are making it or listening it.

Our American House Choir, comprised of all American House residents who love to sing, was thrilled to showcase its talent and go on a seven-stop Christmas Carols Tour throughout metro Detroit in December. The choir sang everyone’s favorite carols in hopes of spreading some cheer and bringing smiles to many people of all ages.

One of the highlights of the American House Choir’s Christmas Carols Tour was a stop at Children’s Hospital in Detroit. The children and staff were so excited to listen to the cheery tunes float down the hallways and it made our residents happy to be able to bring a little bit of the Christmas spirit to them.

Other stops included performances at Henry Ford Cottage Hospital in Grosse Pointe Farms; the Auburn Hills Community Center in Auburn Hills; the Macomb County Senior Services building in Mount Clemens; the Livonia Civic Center and the Livonia Senior Center in Livonia and Deerfield Elementary School in Rochester Hills.

Our American House Choir debuted earlier in 2012 and has already performed for residents on several occasions, including Veteran’s Day and 9/11. This was the choir’s first tour around town and we are very excited and proud of the accomplishments of our choir! You can watch some of their performances (and other American House videos) here.

Don’t forget you can follow us on Facebook to keep up with all our events and have a chance to see the American House Choir perform.

At American House, we offer a variety of activities for our residents to showcase their talents and passions. To find out more about becoming a resident at American House, call us today at (248) 579-4422 or visit www.americanhouse.com.

Seniors Helping Seniors: American House Residents Spread Holiday Cheer

At American House, ’tis the season for giving. For the fourth year in a row, our residents are spreading the true meaning of the season by helping their less fortunate neighbors through the Holiday Hope for Seniors campaign.

The campaign, which started with a tree-lighting event at 25 American House communities Nov. 29, raises money to provide 710 local senior citizens with basic necessities like soap and toothpaste this winter. Our residents are thrilled to be able to harness their charitable spirit and raise money by selling paper ornaments for donations to the Holiday Hope for Seniors campaign!

While donations range from $5 to $20, every penny goes directly to help other seniors. According to MyTV20, a new study shows that 37 percent of senior citizens in the area are living in poverty — and we want to help. Our residents at American House know that it’s important all year long — but particularly around the holidays — to show others that someone cares.

“Each year, the scope of Holiday Hope for Seniors becomes bigger, and the impact becomes more noticeable,” said Rob Gillette, chief operating officer of American House. “We are excited about the opportunity to provide dignity and hope for senior citizens outside of our own American House walls, and help individuals in the community.”

This year, the Holiday Hope for Seniors campaign partnered with Lighthouse of Oakland County, The Senior Alliance, The Information Center, Adult Well-Being Services and The Luella Hannan Memorial Foundation to identify seniors in need of personal items this holiday season, and the goal is to raise $50,000. The Holiday Hope for Seniors campaign is run by the American House Foundation, which was founded in 2007 to invest in outreach for older adults in need of assistance along and in research opportunities through a partnership with the Institute of Gerontology at Wayne State University.

For more information about Holiday Hope for Seniors, or to pledge a donation, please contact Danielle Bruce at dbruce@americanhouse.com or (248) 203-1800.

The residents and staff at American House believe it is truly better to give than receive. Give us a call today at (248) 579-4422 or visit www.americanhouse.com to find out what we can offer you (or your loved one) at one of our close-knit communities.