At Your Service! Grace Ridge Concierge Program Lends Helping Hand

🔊 Listen to This Blog. Make anniversary dinner reservations. Check. Schedule dentist appointment. Check. Shop for Christmas presents. Check. Book flight to NYC. Check. Get oil changed in car. Check. Buy tickets to CoMMA show. Check. Thanks to Grace Ridge’s new concierge program, these services – and so many more – are available to residents with just one phone call. Residents focus on enjoying retirement. We’ll handle the rest. “When you’re retired, you don’t want to deal with frustrating errands and spend all your time waiting on hold to make appointments – you want to relax and have fun,” said Evelyn Beaver, life enrichment director. “That’s why we’ve developed this concierge program – to enhance our residents’ lives,” she said. “By eliminating the day-to-day worries and other stressful responsibilities, they can focus on living vibrantly.” From bill paying to bucket list adventures Concierge services are divided into six primary offerings to help residents manage their daily schedules, activities and tasks: personal, home, shopping and errands, entertainment and leisure, travel and technical. Personal services include making salon and spa reservations, providing respite for family members, pet sitting, housekeeping and companionship. Home services include meal preparation, ironing, assistance with organization projects and house sitting. Personal shopping and errand services include private transportation, grocery shopping, purchasing gifts and prescription pick-up. Travel services include airport transportation, packing assistance, and hotel, rental car and flight arrangements. Technical services include smartphone and computer support and helping residents set up the LifeShare mobile app. Entertainment and leisure services include making dining reservations, acquiring sporting and event tickets and helping residents make their bucket list dreams come true....

Webinar Explores Aging Well, Maintaining a Healthy Body & Mind

🔊 Listen to This Blog. “Just because you age, it doesn’t mean you have to be sick,” said Dr. Golnosh Sharafsaleh. “Healthy aging and preventative care are crucial in maintaining independence and promoting the best quality of life that a person can have.” As director of the Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program at Carolinas HealthCare System Blue Ridge, Dr. Sharafsaleh is dedicated to transforming the delivery of health care for older adults. The geriatric medicine and preventative care specialist shared her expertise on health promotion and preservation during a presentation on Nov. 13 at Grace Ridge Retirement Community. Dr. Sharafsaleh discussed health issues that affect older adults and ways to age gracefully and live a longer and healthier retirement. Topics included: chronic disease, depression, preventative care, immunizations and screenings, vision and hearing loss, nutrition, dietary supplements, falls and physical activity. Watch now:   Nestled in the foothills of the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, Grace Ridge is a Life Plan Community spanning 52 pastoral acres in Morganton, NC. Come for a visit and find out why our community repeatedly garners awards, high rankings and superior satisfaction ratings as one of the best retirement communities in North...

Mother & Daughter Enjoying Life as Retired Roomies

🔊 Listen to This Blog. When Nancy Hendrickson, 65, and her mom, Jeanne, 94, were holed up in a hotel room after evacuating from Hurricane Irma last September, they began fantasizing about hurricane-free places to move. “I never liked living in Florida anyway and wanted to go somewhere with less traffic, decent weather and a little bit of all the seasons. I knew mom didn’t want to live in Kissimmee anymore because it was too hot and humid and she was tired all the time,” Nancy said. “We asked ourselves, ‘What about North Carolina?'” And so began a seven-month search for a retirement community where mother and daughter could live together for the first time since Nancy headed to college. Retirement choices, choices, choices Nancy took her relocation homework seriously and researched more than 50 retirement communities online before deciding to visit four in person. The Hendricksons’ decision to move in together was a financial one, so affordability was at the top of their checklist. Retirement Community Tips What advice do Nancy and Jeanne have for older adults looking for a retirement community in North Carolina? While Jeanne is quick to respond, “Come here!” Nancy offers a more deliberate answer. “There are a lot of questions you need to ask other than ‘Are the people nice?’ and ‘Can I afford it?’ Make a list of the things that are really important to you and make sure you get those questions answered. It’s also important to stay a night or two to test the place first.” Other must-haves were easy access to nature, a full kitchen, outdoor space and close...

Explore the Wonders of Wellness at Senior Fair, Oct. 4

🔊 Listen to This Blog. September marks the beginning of fall, but it’s also a time to focus on healthy aging. Explore the wonders of wellness and learn how you can build healthier habits for an active lifestyle at Grace Ridge’s Live Longer, Grow Stronger Senior Wellness Fair, Oct. 4. “This is a continued celebration of September’s Healthy Aging Month and our 4th year of bringing together community specialists in happiness and health,” said Kelli Huggins, wellness director. “Helping our residents build healthier habits to thrive and stay active remains our top priority and hosting this fair helps us meet that goal.” She added, “It’s also a chance for Grace Ridge to give back to the community by providing Morganton and Burke County seniors a chance to explore techniques, strategies and tips for aging well. The event is a one-stop shop for health, happiness and wellness needs.” Wellness Fair Highlights Flu shots. Don’t forget to bring your Medicare Part B card, medical insurance card or other form of payment. Complimentary health screenings and assessments for balance, spine and sleep apnea. Medication education booth, where you can learn about medication-medication and medication-food interactions. Nutritional information and healthy samples from the culinary team. Physician Presenters Dr. William Bell from EmergeOrtho specializes in treating adult orthopedic problems from the shoulder to the hand. Dr. Catherine Galida specializes in osteopathic manual therapy and acupuncture. Dr. Steven L. Smith from Hickory Chiropractic Clinic specializes in chiropractic care with an emphasis on wellness. Allison Thompson, PT, specializes in treating women who are having problems with pelvic floor health. The Live Longer, Grow Stronger Senior Wellness...

New Technology Makes Resident Connections, Communications Easy

🔊 Listen to This Blog. During a recent late-night visit to Grace Ridge Retirement Community’s health care wing, Executive Director Chris Romick got caught up in a lively game of “Name That Tune” with assisted living residents. “It was hilarious because they blew me away with their knowledge of 1950s music. And the best part is, we didn’t need any complicated devices to play. All we needed was a simple remote control and television,” he said. Campus-Wide Entertainment and Engagement Games are just one example of the on-demand activities available through LifeShare Technologies. The campus-wide system is designed to enrich residents’ living experiences and help them stay better connected with family and friends. Large televisions in independent living, assistant living and memory care play videos, music, faith programs, news, weather and podcasts. The technology also displays photos, menus, activity calendars, announcements, birthdays and memorial recognitions. “Both residents and staff are responding well to this new communication system, especially since it’s so easy use. Everyone loves seeing photos from all the events and activities happening in and out of our community,” Romick said. Mobile App Offers Constant Connection The system’s mobile apps – designated for independent living, skilled nursing and memory care – give family members a convenient communication tool to stay connected with loved ones and care providers. “Once family members download the free app, they can see scheduled activities, dining menus, photos and any community announcements as soon as they’re made,” Romick said. “Guests coming to visit a resident for lunch can look at the app to see what’s on the menu and what events are planned for that...

Grace Ridge Starts $15 Million Renovations

🔊 Listen to This Blog. When you have sweeping views of the breathtaking Blue Ridge mountains, you don’t want to waste any opportunities to catch a glorious sunset or take in the scenic landscapes. That’s one of the driving forces behind Grace Ridge’s $15 million master renovation plan – to better connect the community’s lodge feel with the “nature’s playground” offered just outside its doors. “We’re working in collaboration with GMK Associates on campus-wide enhancements, which will include revamping the community spaces on the third, fourth and fifth floors to create more user-friendly areas for art, meetings and sports viewing,” said Chris Romick, executive director. Additionally, several independent living cottages are getting a facelift and Romick noted one of them sold even before the renovations were complete. “They’re going to be gorgeous, in-demand homes. We’re tearing down walls, opening up the space and giving them a whole new modern look and feel.” Heart of the Community The most significant upgrade residents will experience is the transformation of the first floor – from a “blank hallway” to a welcoming and vibrant café and lounge. The café will offer lighter, grab-and-go fares like pre-made salads, sandwiches and baked goods, as well as beer and wine. The focal point will be an outdoor seating area with a retractable awning for sunshade, propane fire circle for chilly winter nights, unobstructed mountain views and plenty of fresh air. “It will be a place where residents can sit and relax with an ice cream cone, or stop in to pick up a morning coffee and fresh croissant before heading out for the day,” Romick said....