Friday, May 18, 2012


Proof that we never grow up:
"Is that cream style corn?" Mrs. A asked as she poked the vegetable with her fork.
"No, it's regular," I said as I uncovered her drinks and dessert.
She scooped up a few kernels, chewed them thoughtfully and then spit them out.
"Well, now it is," she said.


Proof that we can be happy anywhere:
The other day I walked by Mrs. B's room and heard a voice, but no one was in there.  Thinking the TV was on, I walked in to turn it off.  But it wasn't on.  So, I advanced further into the room and peeked into the bathroom.  There sat Mrs. B, on the toilet, singing away.  I decided to just slip out without letting her know I had heard her.


Proof that we still think we're funny:
"Do you got a dry pocket?" Mr. C asked me as he moved slowly from the dining room.
"Yes, do you need me to hold something for you?" I answered.
"No, I need to pee and I don't know if I'm gonna make it to the bathroom."


Proof that we always think we're a catch:
"Mr. D," I said, taking his hand. "This is the ladies hall.  If you go down there, they'll be yelling, 'There's a man out there!'"  I turned him around and headed him in the other direction.

"They might be yelling, 'Send another!'"

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Restaurant-Style Dining Part Deux

A little while back I talked about how our facility was switching to "Restaurant-Style Dining".  Staff emotions were, and still are, mixed about it.  The residents were all for it.  Now that we've been doing it for several weeks, I wanted to let you know how it's going.

The residents really do like setting their own dining schedules and getting to choose what they want from more than two meals.  We still have most folks rushing to the dining room when the meal service begins, but a few are now wandering in later because they know the food will be fresh and hot no matter when they get there.  They also like having a choice of desserts, so on the nights when canned fruit cocktail is the "dessert of the day" they can get a fried pie or lava cake or ice cream instead.  (I mean, really, fruit for dessert needs to have a little sugar and a crust.  But I digress.)

In the beginning the biggest difficulty was figuring out how to deal with the residents who really didn't want to come to the dining room and the residents who needed to be fed.  We are still struggling with the assisted diners, but the residents who stay in their rooms are being handled by bringing their trays two at a time throughout the meal.  Ideally, the assisted diners would also be brought to the dining room two at a time, helped with their meal, and then brought back to their room.  Unfortunately, what's happening is that they are all being brought in at the same time and fed by one or two aides.  This seems to be related to staffing problems more than anything else.

All in all, it's going well.  The residents like it and the staff is adjusting.  I'm hoping that this is the first in a long line of "updates" that we'll be going through to make the nursing center more like home.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Phew! Made it.

I'm off for two days.  I'm hopeful that we'll get our ducks in a row and I won't be asked to put in any more extra time.  Even if they ask, they're on their own, I'm afraid.  Seven weeks of overtime is more than enough.  Sometimes the extra money is not worth the trade of my time off and the re-collection of my patience and sanity.