Seasons Ontario Magazine

A Message FROM THE CEO I f you are like me, you can’t wait for the day that COVID-19 will be behind us. While we can see the light at the end of the tunnel, we can’t let our guard down just yet.

during this incredibly challenging time. Seasons was recognized as a Great Place to Work ® for the second year in a row and named one of Canada's Best Managed Companies. This is thanks to our committed team members, delivering on our mission to Connect, Care, Change. I have had the privilege of working at Seasons for 12 years and have never been more proud of our team members and amazed by our residents. Whether you are considering retirement community living for yourself or a loved one, we know this is an important decision. I encourage you to research your many options and speak with our on-site teams to answer any questions you may have. Thank you for considering us in your search. I hope we have the pleasure of welcoming you home to Seasons when the time is right for you.

Much has been written about the resilience of the elders that we have the pleasure of serving every day. This generation of extraordinary people has seen world wars, several economic depressions, and even The Spanish Flu of 1918. In addition to the sacrifices they have made their entire lives, they were first in line to bravely roll up their sleeves for three rounds of vaccination shots. Their leadership and commitment should be an inspiration to all of us: It certainly is to me. In 2021, Seasons implemented a mandatory vaccination policy for all staff. Our team members selflessly stepped up so that our residents, their teammates and their own families would be safe from COVID-19. I want to extend my profound gratitude for those who did the right thing and put us closer to ending the pandemic. COVID-19 was not the only thing that occupied our time and energy during 2021. Equally impressive to our response to the pandemic are the awards that have been bestowed on Seasons


Mike Lavallée Chief Executive Officer

SEASONS Magazine

The Evolution of Retirement Living

S M Contents

We believe in a flexible approach to care that supports our residents' preferences.

The Difference Between Retirement Living and Long-Term Care



4 6

Better Living, Less Worry The Difference Between Retirement Living and Long-Term Care The Signs of Change Is It Time for a Talk? More Affordable Than You Think


12 16 18 21 22 24 28 30 35 36 38 40 42 45 48 50 53


Seasons will work to support our residents in their journey to becoming as healthy and active as possible, regardless of their fitness level.

It can be intimidating and emotional for everyone involved. Seasons provides conversation starters when discussing retirement living with a loved one.

Mission, Vision, Values Remarkable Residents Your Food Is Our Passion A Seasons Chef Recipe Memories Through Meals The Seasons Approach to Care Care RX: Did You Know?




Memory Care: The Seasons Way

Love Notes

Seasons remains committed to

Living the Fun Life Let's Get Moving Pet Friendliness Introducing: Cubigo The Importance of Giving Back Is Retirement Community Living Safe? Why I Love My Job

Seasons understands that pets are often an extension of our family, which is why all of our communities are pet-friendly.

A Look Back at Ten Years of Seasons' Remarkable Residents.

maintaining the highest IPAC standards while ensuring our residents are engaged and connected.




56 58 60

We encourage resident feedback and aim to cater to the tastes and the desires of the patrons in a specific residence.

Downsizing Tips Frequently Asked Questions Seasons Locations

It can be overwhelming to know what to keep, donate, or throw away. Seasons offers some strategies to help make downsizing a more positive process.






W hether it’s a team member who delivers your morning coffee just the way you like it or a friendly neighbour who invites you to join an activity they know you will love, Seasons residents know they are surrounded by people who genuinely care. According to Harvard Health, good connections and social support have improved health, longevity, and increased feelings of happiness. At Seasons, we want to learn who our residents are as individuals, understand what is most important to them and then do whatever we can within each interaction to exceed their expectations. We call those small instances “wow moments” because we know how significant they can be in making someone feel valued, cared for, and at home. One example of this is the annual Seasons Celebrates Remarkable Residents program,

celebrating its 10th Anniversary this year, which was designed to highlight the remarkable lives of our residents and celebrate them. While contestants are asked to illustrate their achievements, contributions to their community, particular skill or talent, or making a positive contribution to their Seasons residence, everyone is welcome and encouraged to share their story. The program is an excellent opportunity for our staff and residents to get to know each other in a meaningful way while having the chance to win one month of free rent at the residence in which they live (for more, see page 21). We understand that it takes a special person to go the extra mile for our residents continually. Therefore, we must recruit and hire qualified individuals who are enthusiastic about providing excellent customer service and making an impact on the lives of the people they meet at Seasons because this is what our corporate vision of “Connect, Care, Change” is all about! We believe that when we take the time to genuinely connect with our residents and show them that we care, we can affect positive change in their lives and, as a result, the lives of our team members too. We make sure to recognize and reward our team members who go above and beyond our standards because we believe that engaged employees who feel respected by their employer will naturally extend the same courtesy to our residents.



THE Difference BETWEEN RETIREMENT LIVING AND LONG-TERM CARE A s you begin your search for senior living options, you will soon realize there are many different choices. At Seasons, we are

ensure our residents are engaged in meaningful activities and connected with their neighbours and loved ones. Our residents continue to enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing they can count on our dedicated team members if and when they need us. Prospective residents want reassurance that professionally-trained staff can provide care when needed. Still, we know that this isn’t their only priority: They also demand a comfortable lifestyle in a safe yet welcoming environment, surrounded by people who genuinely care. Seasons strives to accomplish this by providing excellent customer service and being a place our residents are proud to call home.

here to help you understand what these choices mean. Retirement residences and long-term care are terms that are often used interchangeably to describe a seniors home. The truth is that each option offers different types of services based on the amount of care a person needs. A retirement residence is typically an independent living community that offers housekeeping services, meals, activities and care if needed. This should not be confused with long-term care (LTC). Long- term care residences cater to individuals who require the highest level of care which might include 24-hour support. In Alberta, we partner with Alberta Health Services to accommodate care needs up to a specific measure. In Ontario, LTC homes are subsidized by the provincial government, while most retirement homes are not. Today’s retirement residences are typically lively communities full of active, independent seniors who enjoy the convenience and support of communal living. While a heightened focus on health and safety has changed the day-to-day routines of our residents, our teams work hard to




When is the best time to move to a retirement residence? T here is no magic age or time in someone’s life to move into a retirement residence. Everyone is different, and people have different needs and wants for their retirement. Many times, people wait for a crisis before they start looking at retirement living. Maybe it was a fall or health issue that prompted them, or their loved ones, to begin the search. While this is a natural response, and we are prepared to help people with this decision at any stage in life, we encourage individuals to start thinking about Seasons before an issue arises. When you are well, you have the luxury of time on your side. You can visit the different retirement residences in the area and weigh your options. At Seasons, you are welcome to book a personalized appointment to view the home and potentially meet your new neighbours and service team members with whom you will be interacting each day. If you are still unsure as to whether it’s time to think about moving into a retirement residence, you might consider these questions: > Are you eating three nutritious meals a day? > Is it getting harder to keep up with cleaning and maintaining your home? > Do you still drive, and if not, is it easy for you to arrange transportation? > If you live alone, do you feel unsafe or lonely?



1) Kitchen Check the fridge for spoiled food or evidence of fresh food from a recent trip to the grocery store. Is your loved one living on tea and frozen or processed food? 2) Washroom Has your loved one stopped bathing? Did they once take pride in their appearance, and now it seems they don’t care? Take a look around. If there are spills on the floor, it could mean your loved one isn’t reaching the bathroom in time. 3) Bedroom Do you have concerns about correct medication use? Have pills been left in the blister pack, or are medications spilled on the floor? 4) Living Room Aside from watching TV, how else is your loved If bills and newspapers are making the house look cluttered, it could mean your loved one is having trouble keeping up with the housework. 6) Stairs Does your loved one stick to one floor of the house? This could be because they feel they can’t manage the stairs, or they could be afraid of falling. 7) Laundry Room Is the laundry piling up? Does your loved one complain they don’t have any clean clothes? Household chores are tiresome, and washing machines in the basement can be tough to access. 8) Yard Are the gardens and lawn looking as good as they once did? Yard work is strenuous. Your loved one might need a helping hand to keep the yard looking neat. 9) Garage one staying busy? 5) Dining Room Has your loved one lost their driver’s licence? This can limit their independence, as they will need to depend on others to run errands and get to appointments.










A move to Seasons means you no longer need to worry about cooking meals, cleaning and taking care of a house, or figuring out how to get to the grocery store or doctor’s appointments—we happily take care of all that. Making this decision sooner means more time spent enjoying yourself! Are you concerned about a loved one? There are some signals that your loved one may be struggling to live at home alone. Changes in physical appearance and mood and changes in their surroundings are indicators that they may need assistance. For example, maybe your dad

used to take pride in his home, but now you see signs of neglect and disrepair. These could be signs of a more significant issue. Take a look at this infographic and ask yourself some of these questions the next time you pay a visit to your loved one. If you notice any of these or other changes in your loved one’s routine, it may be time to discuss retirement living. Our teams often hear from residents that they “wish they made this decision sooner!” and they are happy to help you, or a loved one, make this same decision if and when it’s right for them.


IS IT Time FOR A TALK? Conversation starters when discussing retirement living with a loved one

H aving a conversation about moving to a retirement living community can be intimidating and emotional for everyone involved. Nevertheless, it is essential to have before a crisis occurs, such as a severe health event. Instead of having time on your side, the choice becomes a need, which could result in you or a loved one not being able to get their first pick of accommodation. This prompts the question, “When is the right time to move to a retirement community?” There is no one-size-fits-all answer, and what may work for one family may not be suitable for another. Each situation and its factors are different.

If you remain unsure, looking at The Signs of Change infographic in this magazine may be helpful. “There are usually some strong but silent signals that now might be the right time to move to a retirement home. Maybe they’re no longer interested in activities or hobbies that once brought them joy, or they’re not eating regularly; these indicators could mean that a loved one’s lifestyle is shrinking,” says Amanda Walker, Leasing Manager at Seasons Brantford. We do our best at Seasons to encourage people to have the conversation early, even before these signs present themselves. This way, you’ll be



prepared and ready to take the following steps as they come with an informed and willing loved one. Hopefully, both parties will be on the same page regarding what the future holds, adding to the overall peace of mind and a sense of shared understanding. That said, many wonder how to bring up the topic. How do I have “the talk” about alternative living arrangements with an aging parent or loved one? Amanda suggests starting the conversation with something small such as asking them their feelings about living at home on their own: > When home alone, do they feel safe and secure or worried and anxious? > How are they managing home maintenance? Is help needed to cut grass or shovel? > Do they have enough groceries for the week? It could be that you’re beginning to notice subtle changes in their routine, like wanting to drive less or calling more frequently. These could be conversation starters, too. Signs like these could indicate that bigger ones are on their way, making this a good time and opportunity to sit down and have a genuine discussion. “Some people don’t realize the extent of these changes until someone, who they know cares about their wellbeing, brings it up in conversation. They get used to functioning as they are,” adds Sonia Stubbings, Leasing Manager at Seasons Clarington. “A lot of the time, this isn’t a decision that happens overnight, unless it’s a ‘crisis' type of scenario, which will accelerate that timeline. One of the most common objections I hear is that many say they aren’t ready—but what does ‘ready’ really look like? Each journey is different, and we want to help guide you on your way.” The truth is, several long-standing myths that exist around senior living options continue to influence people’s most common concerns and objections, yet they simply aren’t accurate. For example, the idea is that residents lose all of their independence once in a retirement home. Many people move to a retirement community without needing the full complement of supportive

In this situation, Sonia adds, “We understand that many people want to act as a caregiver for their aging parents or older loved ones, but they often work full-time jobs with busy schedules and families of their own. Burnout is very real, and we know something has to give eventually, either for the safety of the person receiving the care or for the caregiver’s wellbeing. There should be no shame or guilt in seeking out and accepting help. It’s what we’re here for.” If you believe you may be suffering from caregiver burnout, speak with a trusted medical professional for personalized advice.

services that are offered. Highly independent people decide to move for a variety of reasons. It could be that they are tired of keeping up with household chores, want access to a social calendar, or simply desire the peace of mind that comes from knowing someone is always there if they need them. Other people move to a retirement setting because they desire the care and support we can provide. Often, independence can increase after a move. When someone has help with nutritious meals, access to social programs, regular fitness classes, and a health and wellness team to oversee their wellbeing, they can lead happier and healthier lives. “After the first conversation, we suggest exploring your options. Ask your parents or loved ones if they have any friends living in a retirement residence. If so, visit them, take note of the feeling you get when you walk in, interact with those who live and work there, have them show you around or schedule a tour. This will give you a better understanding of what life is like in the home. You might be surprised to find out that they aren’t like nursing homes or long-term care facilities as many imagine,” continues Sonia. As options become informed decisions and residents move in, the transition comes with freedom from worry and a sense of relief, often a healthier and happier parent and more time to spend simply enjoying each other's company. “We understand the weight of this decision and want to make the process as comfortable and pleasant as we can for new residents and their families,” says Amanda. Know the signs: Are you experiencing caregiver burnout? Caregiver burnout is a heightened state of physical, emotional and mental exhaustion that may be accompanied by a change in attitude toward required or expected care tasks. Burnout occurs when primary caregivers don’t get the help they need or try to do more than they can handle, resulting in feelings of increased fatigue, anxiety, and depression. Some may also experience guilt when they spend time on themselves rather than spending all of their time taking care of a loved one.

Symptoms: > Withdrawal from friends and family

> Loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities > Feeling blue, irritable, hopeless, and helpless > Changes in appetite, weight, or both > Changes in sleep patterns > Getting sick more often > Feelings of wanting to hurt yourself or the person for whom you are caring > Emotional and physical exhaustion > Excessive use of alcohol or sleep medications > Irritability recognizing-burnout



total price of a nursing home, these can be considered deductible medical expenses. To keep it simple, this means that many seniors could get back up to 25% to 30% of their health-related costs. 4) When funding senior living, many seniors don’t take into consideration all of their sources of income which could include Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security, RRSP/RIF, TFSAs and non-registered investment income, pension plans (personal or from a spouse), family recreation property, and so on. It is important to remember that these funds have been built over a lifetime to be used in part to cover retirement expenses; now is that time. 5) In some cases, people have bought Long-Term Care Insurance that will cover some health care costs.*

Additionally, there’s the non-monetary value that comes with moving into a Seasons community. This includes access to 24-hour emergency response, a planned social calendar, flexible care support, no more to-do lists or home renovations, balanced meal selections, along with greater peace of mind for both residents and their families. We would encourage you to speak with the Seasons Leasing Manager at your desired location for more information. *Financial advice contributed by Ted Rechtshaffen, MBA, CFP, CIM, president and wealth advisor at TriDelta Financial, a boutique wealth management firm focusing on investment counselling and estate planning. Note, this is not a paid partnership. Please consult your trusted financial advisor for personalized financial advice.


Staying at home with care or moving to a retirement residence – how much does it really cost, and how will I afford it?

T h e truth is, there’s no “one-size-fits-all” answer to this commonly asked question. Many people experience “sticker shock” when they first hear the cost of retirement living. It’s hard for many to comprehend paying a monthly fee when you have worked so hard to become mortgage-free. If you compare the cost of living at home with no support in place, retirement home living may appear expensive in comparison. However, most people move to a retirement home when a change in circumstance has occurred, such as a health concern or a desire for a more convenient, worry- free lifestyle. Five crucial factors make the monthly expense much easier to handle, and in fact, might be more affordable than you think: 1) If you move out of your home, you are leaving behind significant expenses. First off, you will eliminate most of your food costs and utilities. If you

are a homeowner, you will eliminate your condo fees or maintenance costs, as well as realty taxes. While it’s impossible to provide a general savings number given the range in lifestyles and realty costs across the country, it would be fair to say that most people will eliminate anywhere from $18,000 to $60,000 a year by not living at home. 2) When you are at the stage of living in a retirement residence or nursing home, your lifestyle expenses usually decline meaningfully. Your travel costs, dining expenses, new clothing budget, and entertainment spending – which could have been $25,000 or more when you were 70, might now be $2,500 or less. 3) There are tax credits that can help. In particular, the Medical Expenses and Disability Tax Credit are two of the largest among several that can reduce after-tax expenses. For example, suppose there are health care costs in a retirement residence or the



W hen moving into a retirement home, it’s important to do your research. There are many options to choose from, and you want to make the right decision for yourself or your loved one. Seasons’ team members are happy to help you understand these options and answer any questions. Additionally, here is a list of community resources available to you: Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care The Ministry of Health and Long-Term is committed to providing excellent customer service, and is guided by the principles of accessibility, responsiveness, reliability, caring, and accountability. Toll-Free: 1-866-532-3161 Veterans Affairs Canada deeply values the contribution that Veterans have made to the development of our nation, and we honour the sacrifices they have made in the defence of freedom and the pursuit of world peace. Veterans Affairs Canada offers a wide variety of services for Veterans and their families—programs to assist you after an injury or during the transition from military to civilian life, and many other services to help you and your family throughout your life. TTY Toll-Free: 1-800-387-5559 Website: Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC)

> Licenses retirement homes > Routinely inspects retirement homes against the Act > Responds to resident or staff complaints > Informs the public about non-compliant retirement homes > Educates residents, retirement home operators and the public about the Act All Seasons Retirement Communities in Ontario are licensed and compliant with the Act. At Seasons, we believe the RHRA empowers current and future residents to choose a retirement community that is right for them. Phone: 416-440-3570 Toll-Free: 1-855-ASK-RHRA (1-855-275-7472) Email: Website: Ontario Retirement Communities Association (ORCA) For over 40 years, ORCA has set the standard for operational excellence through its leadership in offering quality retirement living education to our members. ORCA represents over 92 percent of retirement home suites in Ontario, with members providing accommodations to over 55,000 seniors. ORCA provides leadership in areas of education and training and supports members to meet provincial regulations, adopt best practices and promote quality and excellence in all areas of operation. ORCA also strongly promotes and advocates on behalf of its members with government and other stakeholders and positions the sector for growth and success as an invaluable service to today’s aging population. Seasons Retirement Communities’ voluntary decision to become a member of ORCA is based on our company's value on the well-being of our residents,

Toll-Free: 1-866-522-2122 TDD/TTY: 1-833-921-0071 Email: Website:

Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority (RHRA) Established in 2010, The RHRA is an independent, not-for-profit regulatory body that works to protect the interests of residents living in retirement communities in Ontario. On behalf of the Ontario government, the RHRA ensures that all Ontario retirement homes are licensed and compliant with the Retirement Homes Act, 2010 (the Act). The RHRA protects the interests of residents in the following ways:

staff, and family members. Toll-Free: 1-888-263-5556

Email: Website:



Understand our residents so we can deliver meaningful moments.



Understand our residents so we can deliver meaningful moments. Connect. Care. Change.



C ommitment Make a positive impact A ction


Build meaningful connections

R esults

Engaged staff + happy residents = results

E nthusiasm

Love what you do

S ervice

Deliver "wow moments" that matter

2 2


A LOOK BACK: TEN YEARS OF Remarkable Residents

A t Seasons, we believe it is important to us home. One way we do so is through the Seasons Celebrates Remarkable Residents program, designed to celebrate the outstanding achievements, contributions, and talents of our residents. “This contest truly embodies our vision to Connect, Care, Change. It has a lasting, positive impact on residents and their families whose stories are heard. It also allows our team members to learn something unique and personal about the connect with the people that choose to call individuals we have the pleasure to serve each day,” says Amanda White, Senior Director of Marketing and Communications. Based on the entry forms, the selection committee takes the time to read and discuss each submission, then has the challenging task of narrowing down the finalists. When named, the finalists have their life stories filmed by Seasons, with the winner being awarded one month of free rent. This year, the program is celebrating its 10th anniversary. “We want to thank all of our dedicated frontline team members who have taken the time to collect these inspiring stories, along with our residents’ families. We truly appreciate your support each year and are excited to mark this significant milestone in a special way,” says Amanda.

Past winner, Mable Gagnier, reflects on what it can mean to a resident,

I was shocked and surprised to win, but I have been eternally grateful for the experience. Being a Remarkable Resident for Seasons was, and still is, humbling and enjoyable. Most importantly, my family has this video as a legacy for all generations to come. It’s a life-lasting gift.

To watch the videos of our past finalists and winners, visit our YouTube channel.



F ood plays a significant role in how our residents feel about living at Seasons Retirement Communities. We know how important it is that they enjoy the food we prepare for them. To achieve this, we hire skilled chefs who love food just as much as our residents do. Our dining service teams know what it takes to ensure healthy and well-balanced meals without compromising taste and presentation. Many people continue to believe that retirement food is processed, boring and bland, which simply isn’t true. “While we sometimes prepare food with less oil

or salt, for example, we make sure the meals are delicious and flavourful by adding different herbs and spices,” says Sumith Sugathan, Dining Services Manager at Seasons Lethbridge Gardens. “We use the same quality ingredients and seasonings as any restaurant, and we put the same amount of care into each dish as we would serving our own family,” adds Scott Wesseling, Dining Services Manager at Seasons St. Thomas. At mealtimes, residents are presented with an abundance of menu options.* Where breakfast is



There is a 24-hour bistro or common area available to residents for refreshments between mealtimes, including juice, coffee, tea, baked goods, and fresh fruit throughout the day. We also have spaces that residents can reserve to host events or gatherings for special occasions.** For many of our team members, one of the most rewarding aspects of their job is the opportunity to make meaningful connections with residents daily. “My culinary team and I always want to go above and beyond to make our residents’ day special,” says Scott. “The most rewarding part of my job is the positive feedback we get from our residents when they really enjoyed a meal that we prepared for them,” finishes Sumith. As you search for a retirement home for yourself or a loved one, during your visit, ask to see the menu or have a conversation with a member of the dining services team to get a glimpse into the dining experience. In your retirement years, you should expect to continue the traditions and routines that you appreciate most and enjoying meals should be no exception. *Meals provided vary by residence. **Events may be restricted due to visitor protocols.

served, there is a featured entree with an ‘always available’ list of alternatives. One can expect options such as fresh fruit, yogurt, hearty eggs and omelettes, hot oatmeal or even good old-fashioned pancakes. At lunch and dinner, there is a Feature of the Day and five other ‘always available’ list of options. Each week, our homes feature a ‘resident’s choice’ meal, adapted from a resident’s own recipe or a favourite of the community. Lunch may offer sandwich options, warm soup choices and salad selections. Dinner may include potato choices, vegetables, and different proteins throughout the week such as steak, chicken or fish. If you desire a vegetarian option, our chefs can accommodate this preference. If residents have special medical dietary needs, such as diabetes, we can help with portion control and offer desserts that are sugar-free or low in sugar. Menus have a five-week rotation and reflect the changing seasons, with lighter fare offered in the spring and summer and wholesome comfort foods in the fall and winter. In addition, resident favourites prepared year-round, such as classic meatloaf and roast beef dinners. We encourage resident feedback and aim to cater to specific tastes and desires. Each community has an opportunity to share their comments and suggestions at a monthly Food Committee meeting. Our residents have the opportunity to suggest lunch and dinner specials every Thursday, and we take their preferences and needs into account when planning menus, including intolerances, allergies, cultural practices, and tastes," says Sumith.


2 9



INGREDIENTS 3 Medium Yellow Onions finely diced 3 Small to Medium Carrots finely diced 3 Celery Stalks finely diced 2.5 lbs Split Peas 5 litres Vegetable Stock 22 oz Cured and Smoked Ham cut into bite-size pieces (reserve 4oz for garnish) INSTRUCTIONS 1) In a large pot on medium heat add vegetable oil, onions, carrot, and celery and sauté until onions turn translucent. Stirring periodically. 2) Add split peas, vegetable stock, ham, marjoram, bay leaves, and bring up to a boil stirring frequently. 3) Once at a boil, bring down to medium-low heat and cover pot stirring frequently. Cook until peas are tender and are falling apart. 4) Season with salt and pepper to your preferred taste and remove bay leaves. 5) Bowl up soup and garnish with reserved ham. CHEFS NOTE If you would like a thinner soup, add in more stock after you have finished cooking until the desired thickness has been achieved. If you would like a thicker soup, skim off stock with a spoon from the top until the desired thickness has been achieved.

1 ½ tbsp Marjoram 3 Bay Leaves 3 tbsp Vegetable Oil Salt and Pepper to Taste


3 1

Memories THROUGH MEALS F ood can be used as a powerful way to stimulate positive memories and emotions to encourage adequate food intake while also improving CONTRIBUTED BY SYSCO CANADA NUTRITION SERVICES TEAM

the associated positive feelings may even render the food more satisfying 2 . Another way to evoke memories of home cooking is through the sense of smell. The olfactory bulb, which is responsible for smell, is linked to the areas of the brain associated with memory and emotion 3 . For example, the aroma of a freshly baked apple pie may trigger the thought of mom’s homemade pie cooling on the counter of the family home. Using familiar, comforting foods and creating pleasant aromas in the dining areas can help bring positive feelings to the surface while also potentially encouraging adequate intake. Past Meets Present Understanding the trends of both yesterday and today is key when developing your menu to support the needs and tastes of your residents. Drastic development of the food industry, combined with globalization, has allowed cuisines from across the globe to be available right here in Canada 3 . In the past, the availability of products was often limited by regional growing seasons, while local traditions and cuisine dominated what was served at the dinner table. Today however, we have access to a vast range of ingredients with endless potential to create new flavour profiles. For example, we might try a potato salad made with Greek yogurt dressing or a curried pulled pork sandwich. Experimenting with new ingredients can elevate classic dishes and meet the demands for increased diversity on the menu, harmonizing the past and present. Food is not only about flavour, but also about how it is prepared and where it is consumed. Home cooked meals were a fundamental part of family life after World War II, and so preparing meals from scratch or semi- scratch is one strategy to rekindle those memories related to family and belonging. It is also important to consider the ever-changing dietary needs and preferences of residents, and adapt recipes accordingly. For example, a homemade gluten-free

resident satisfaction and quality of life. In order to achieve this, it is necessary to look into the past to better build today’s menu. A Look into the Past During and after World War II, the way in which food was prepared and consumed in the home was rapidly changing. The impact of soldiers returning home along with industrial development led to more activities surrounding food to become more popular such as barbecuing, enjoying meals outside, and entertaining guests. At the same time, mealtime was extremely valued in the home. Eating at the table was cherished family time where people would enjoy a version of the following classic dinner combination:

lasagna allows those who do not consume gluten to also enjoy home cooked comfort foods. Accommodating resident needs has a powerful impact on promoting inclusiveness and community. Additionally, an ambiance of togetherness can be enhanced with décor that is reminiscent of the past, such as red checkered tablecloths or vintage centrepieces in dining areas. Carefully considering these aspects of dining can help enrich the overall mealtime experience. Making Mealtimes Memorable ​ When it comes to what is on the plate, acknowledging the significance of the past is an important step to assist residents to enjoy the present and embrace the future. Recognizing the emotional and memorable impact of recipes and ingredients when building a menu can further connect people to the food they are eating. So how do we serve the fond memories of the past at mealtime today? By bringing people together to celebrate special events with themed menus on such as Halloween, Remembrance Day, or throwing a 50s

Party with classic mealtime favourites. We can add a flair of nostalgia with some music from past eras like Glenn Miller and Elvis Presley. Mealtime is much more than just when our residents eat, rather it is a perfect opportunity to foster the feeling of home! Supporting content: Sysco – Dorothy Jensen-Muniz, National Account Manager, Healthcare and Senior Living Romm, C. (2015). Why comfort foods comfort: A new study looks at the intersection of taste, nostalgia, and loneliness. The Atlantic. Retrieved from comfort-food-comforts/389613 Sifferlin, A. (2015). The science of why you crave comfort food. Time USA, LLC. Retrieved from cravings Agriculture and Consumer Protection Department. (2010). Globalization of Food Systems and Nutrition. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Retrieved from nutrition/urban_globalization_en.stm

Starchy Vegetable




Cooked Green Vegetable

Green Salad

Despite these emerging changes to mealtime, rationing was still in effect and eating out remained a luxury after World War II. Home cooked meals were the foundation of a household and served as a vital source of nutrition, comfort and sense of belonging. Homestyle Cooking Comforts the Soul Certain foods can sometimes be referred to as “comfort foods” if they are related to a positive memory or feeling, for example the feeling of being cared for. One study showed that people who associated happy family memories with specific foods were more likely to crave these items when feeling down. 1 Not only do these foods provide a source of emotional comfort,

3 2


Seasons Strathroy Strathroy, Ontario

3 4



A t Seasons, we believe in a flexible approach to care that supports our residents’ preferences. We understand that our residents are individuals at different stages of life and that the support they need today may change in the future. Before moving in, new residents will have their needs assessed by a medical professional, including a series of questions about the resident’s health, ability to perform daily living tasks, and their risk for falls. Based on the assessment results, we will recommend the bundled care package that is most appropriate. For peace of mind, Seasons’ service team members are trained to notice even the smallest of changes in a resident’s routine so that we can have proactive and discreet conversations with them and their families about their health and wellbeing. “Our residents are never alone in the process, so there’s no need to worry. We are here to help every step of the way, from the initial conversation to suggesting alternative care options, to monitoring how residents are adapting to their new regimen,” says Brenda D’Alimonte, Director of Care Services. CARE OPTIONS Independent Living (IL) The townhouses and independent apartments at Seasons Retirement Communities offer independent living. They are designed for seniors who can live independently but wish to live in a community designated for seniors with access to social or recreational programming. Our one-storey townhouses and apartments are equipped with

an emergency call system, but no regular care services are provided. Independent Supportive Living (ISL) Independent supportive living suits an independent, active senior who does not need assistance with the activities of daily living but who benefits from a supportive, congregate living environment. Residents in ISL receive assistance with scheduled care and typically enjoy services such as 24-hour emergency response, three meals daily, weekly housekeeping, and medication management. Assisted Living (AL) The assisted living program at Seasons provides supportive care to residents who need assistance with daily tasks but do not require the skilled care provided at a long-term care residence. Residents receive the same services as ISL, plus any additional care services that assist with the activities of daily living, including unscheduled care. Memory Care The memory care program at Seasons is specifically designed to care for seniors living with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease in a dedicated, secure area within some of our residences. Memory care community residents receive specialized AL care services. The Seasons Embrace Today ® memory care philosophy requires a deep understanding of who our residents are, so staff may adjust their interactions and respond with whatever is needed at the moment (for more, see page 34).


3 7 3 7

Did you know?

S easons partners with CareRx to ensure medication service to our residents is accurate, effective and safe. Here is how having medication administered by Seasons staff and monitored by our pharmacy partner, CareRx, is convenient and can be beneficial to your health: 1) When medications are managed by Seasons staff, all faxes, daily deliveries, changes in doctor’s orders, etc., are coordinated through the Seasons Wellness Centre for your convenience and at no additional charge. This is especially beneficial when you see multiple doctors for different health reasons. In contrast, some external pharmacies charge for delivery and sometimes, the delivery is limited. 2) When the Seasons Health & Wellness team assists with medication administration, it is given at the correct time and dosage. This contributes to fewer drug interactions with other medications or supplements. 3) The Seasons Health & Wellness team can oversee the effectiveness of medications or the need to change medications. By monitoring general health concerns, such as blood pressure, blood glucose or pain levels, we can alert your doctor of a need for change. 4) For residents who choose to administer their medications, CareRx can have their prescriptions delivered to their Seasons home by CareRx, which

removes the unnecessary need for residents to leave home and disrupt their day for medication pick-ups. 5) Yearly, or as needed, residents can meet with a Certified Geriatric Pharmacist from CareRx, to review their medications, ask questions and discuss the benefits of different dispensing options, such as blister packs. 6) A complete profile (Administration Medication Record) from the pharmacy is readily available to the home and the resident to help record medication history for peace of mind. 7) At select Seasons communities, residents can access Karie, a smart pill companion supporting their independence and wellness. Should a resident miss a dose of their medication regimen, Karie automatically notifies the Health & Wellness team to follow up with the resident directly. 8) Partnered with CareRX, we have invested in Think Research, which makes a virtual doctor available for all residents who need it. This technology was crucial during the pandemic when it was safer to connect virtually. Now, at select Seasons communities, residents can enjoy the convenience of seeing a doctor without leaving the comfort of their suite. For more information, please speak to the Seasons Health & Wellness Manager.



A t Seasons, our dedicated team is always looking for new ways to improve the lives of our residents. As the Canadian population ages, experts suggest that an increasing number of seniors and their families will be affected by dementia and Alzheimer's disease. According to the Alzheimer Society of Canada, over 500,000 Canadians are living with dementia today. They project the number of Canadians living with dementia in 2030 will be 912,000. Seasons responded to this reality by developing a person-centred Memory Care program for seniors living with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Our secure Memory Care areas incorporate bright, open spaces that feel like home and are comfortable for visitors. Our newer residences include private outdoor spaces to promote freedom of movement and ensure nature is close by. Learning to Embrace Today ® The Seasons Memory Care philosophy is based on our service team members’ commitment to Embrace Today®, which means that they approach each workday with a promise to do their best to make all interactions positive and meaningful, one moment at a time. This philosophy is rooted in person-centred care with five core branches that are aligned with our core values. The branches include training, purposeful connections, reflective practice, support gatherings and an enabling, unhurried environment. We believe that positive relationships among all care partners elevates the person-centred care approach. “We host monthly peer support gatherings for our team members and residents’ families. They strengthen relationships by providing a safe place MEMORY CARE: THE Seasons WAY

to discuss feelings, frustrations and allow opportunities for personal and professional growth,” says Stephanie Sanborn, Director of Innovation and Education. She was instrumental in building the Memory Care program at Seasons. “It takes special qualities to serve seniors with cognitive impairments, and we want our team members to feel supported and cared about, so they can provide the highest quality care to our residents. We believe that positive relationships among all care partners elevate the person-centred care approach,” continues Stephanie. We want to empower our residents to continue building their legacy while at Seasons. We work with our residents and their loved ones to create a Legacy Today journal. We acknowledge and celebrate moments shared at Seasons and document elements of a resident’s life story through this journal. Understanding someone’s past accomplishments and interests strengthens our connection with them, helps shape our care plans, and empowers our residents to continue building their legacy while at Seasons. Our activity calendar for residents in Memory Care is flexible yet progressively balanced to incorporate the elements of the mind and spirit, like brain-enhancing games, exercises and physical activity routines, and calming meditative programs to promote sleep and happiness daily. For example, ‘Fire It Up’ is based on the research that engaging the body and the mind in one program encourages neuroplasticity in the brain. In other words, the brain’s ability to change throughout life, which could mean compensating for lost functions or maximizing remaining functions. What's New Seasons continues to be open to and seek out partnerships in aging research with academic institutions, their students and professors across Canada. Through this continued outreach, we look

forward to gaining increased insight and knowledge within our industry to embrace innovation and best serve our residents, now and in the future. We offer these institutions an excellent platform for interested researchers to access willing seniors for research purposes. We hope that through these extensive efforts that we can continue to bridge the gap between youth and seniors through these extensive efforts. > Seasons and The Centre for Elder Research at Sheridan College explored technology in design for a new and improved ‘den,’ a quiet space for relaxation, reminiscence, and social connection.

> Seasons hosted a robot named Mindy as part of a pilot study to explore how we might use social robots to engage, entertain, and educate residents in retirement homes. > Seasons developed a 4-minute virtual technology-based experience for team members and families from the viewpoint of someone living with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. In Ontario, we have designated Memory Care areas in Bowmanville, LaSalle, Milton, Amherstburg, Stoney Creek and Brantford. We offer Designated Supportive Living, Dementia (DSL4D) in Camrose, High River and Olds.



My mother is there in your home. She has a comfortable apartment, and all her meals are provided. She enjoys her friends there, and she says that you, the General Manager, are the nicest man. How wonderful that she can count the manager of the building as one of her friends! Seasons Family Member Thank you for the love, friendship, kindness and compassion that you showed our Mom. We shall remember you in our hearts forever. Seasons Family Member We want to thank you again for the kindness and exceptional care and attention you gave our sister while she lived with you. She loved living at Seasons Clarington. Seasons Family Member I want to thank all the staff and management for their friendly, appreciated service and help. Seasons Resident

A big thank you to all the staff for all the great care and attention you give us. You are the best!” Seasons Resident I believe that the home’s culture of friendship and fun has helped my mother heal after the loss of her husband of 69 years. Thank you again for the work you do. It means a lot to my Mom and also to her family. Seasons Family Member We would like to send you all a very heartfelt thank you for the wonderful care and attention you extended to our Dad while he was a resident at Seasons Drayton Valley. As his care needs were changing, your staff adapted their services willingly. We are so grateful he was able to stay throughout the pandemic. Your help, dedication and kindness to our father and our family did not go unnoticed. Seasons Family Member


I want to thank you for the care of my dear mother during her time in Memory Care. Whether you spent a lot of time interacting with her or only a short time, please know that you made a difference in the last four years of her life. She expressed to me many times how she felt content and cared for. I also felt confident in the care she was receiving, and I was grateful to be able to spend time with her, just being her daughter again. Seasons Family Member

We call the positive cards, letters and emails we receive from our residents and their loved ones “Love Notes.” Here are some of the best ones that have been shared with our team members over the past year.

Page 1 Page 2-3 Page 4-5 Page 6-7 Page 8-9 Page 10-11 Page 12-13 Page 14-15 Page 16-17 Page 18-19 Page 20-21 Page 22-23 Page 24-25 Page 26-27 Page 28-29 Page 30-31 Page 32-33 Page 34-35 Page 36-37 Page 38-39 Page 40-41 Page 42-43 Page 44-45 Page 46-47 Page 48-49 Page 50-51 Page 52-53 Page 54-55 Page 56-57 Page 58-59 Page 60-61 Page 62-63 Page 64-65 Page 66 Page 67

Made with FlippingBook Online document