My grandparents at the time were married for 72 years. We just celebrated their anniversary at Golden Corral, their favorite place. Each of the 5 grandchildren stood up and told a favorite memory of them. I have numerous memories of them. They were always at my sporting events and big moments of my life. My grandpa was my first call when my cars broke down, when my washing machine wouldn’t work, garage door wouldn’t open and many more broken things that my grandpa could always fix. Their small condo in Riverdale was a safe house for me. I would go there after tough days and knew that I would hear the words I needed to hear and their would always be food for me.
My grandparents got married when they were 17. They built their first house, they knew how to make and fix things. My grandpa joined the Army in 1942 and was sent to the Pacific were he worked with communications and telephone lines. He served 2 and 1/2 years and when he came home he saw his son for the first time at 2 years old. My grandparents were frugal. They saved their tinfoil and bread bags for future use. They knew the meaning of hard work and sacrifice.
Over the years my grandparents started to grow old. My grandma started forgetting things and would repeat the same questions over and over. She knew we were special people, but we had to remind her that she was our grandma. My grandpa starting moving a lot slower. He still had a great mind and could remember everything but he started getting weak and walking slow. It was harder for him to get out of the chair. He was the caregiver for my grandma. He would make sure she was showered and dressed properly, he would do the laundry, the cooking, and the cleaning.
One day my grandparents only surviving son which is my Dad called me and said that he found grandpa on the floor of his bedroom unable to move or talk. My dad had called 911 and my grandpa was rushed to the hospital. He had a sever urinary tract infection and almost died. Of course, my grandpa being stubborn didn’t want to tell anyone that he was sick and thought of it as no big deal. When we asked my grandma what happened she didn’t have any idea that grandpa was on the floor. We think he could of been there for 24 hours. My grandpa was recovering well at the hospital but needed some short term rehabilitation. After talking with several people we chose to move him to Stonehenge Rehabilitation in South Ogden. Our family took shifts taking care of grandma so she wouldn’t be alone and we discussed what are we going to do with both of them when grandpa would only be at the rehab center for a couple weeks. My family looked to me.
I have been working in the Assisted Living business since 1999. When I first learned about Assisted Living I was working as a home health aide for a home care business and one of my patients lived at an Assisted Living Community. At the time there weren’t many assisted living communities in Utah and if you asked someone if they knew what it was then chances were they didn’t know. In 2017, there are more than 240 assisted living communities in Utah and the last couple of years thousand of new beds have been coming to Utah. Before Assisted Living, the options were to stay at home and have people come and help as best they could, move into one of your kids house, or move to a nursing home. These 3 options had some major problems. A lady by the name of Karen Wilson had a vision of a new place for her mother who had suffered from a stroke and was living in a nursing home. Her vision was a small place with a little kitchenette and a bathroom. It would have her favorite things in it, including her cat, her unfinished projects, her Vicks VapoRub, and coffepot. There would be people to help her with the things she couldn’t do without help. In the imaginary place, she would be able to lock her door, control her heat, and have her own furniture. No one would make her get up, turn off her favorite soap operas, or ruin her clothes. Nor could anyone throw out her “collection: of back issues of magazines and Goodwill treasures because they were a safety hazard. She could have privacy whenever she wanted, and no one could make her get dressed, take her medicine, or go to activities she did not like. She would be Jessie again, a person living in an apartment instead of a patient in a bed. So in 1983 she opened the first Assisted Living community in Portland Oregon and called it Park Place Assisted Living.
Our House Assisted Living of Ogden
My partners and I built Our House Assisted Living of Ogden and we opened the community in June of 2015. It is located at 446 N Jefferson Avenue in Ogden Utah just North of The Weber Applied Technology College on North Street. At Our House of Ogden we have 43 private studio and one bedrooms apartments and provide assistance with showering, medication administration, housekeeping, laundry, 3 meals a day, personal grooming, multiple activities throughout the day, transportation to doctors, Wal-Mart, banks, etc., if needed we provide assistance with incontinence care, and transferring residents from their wheelchairs to their bed, chair, or bathroom. The great thing about Assisted Living is every resident is different with what they need. Each resident receives a personalized service plan that they choose what they want help with or not. There are Certified Nursing Assistants 24 hours a day and all the residents need to do is push a pendent that is worn around their neck and someone will be there in just a couple of minutes. Its a great environment and something that would be perfect for my grandparents. However, we would need to see what my grandpa thought about it.
As you can imagine, when we brought up the possibility of moving to Our House Assisted Living of Ogden he said that he would be perfectly fine going back home and taking care of grandma just like he has been doing. Besides he said, “I don’t want to go live with a bunch of old people.” He was a young 92 years old at the time. The average age of an assisted living resident is about 83. My grandpa was stubborn and independent. We can’t force him to move to Assisted Living. Or can we? Because of my involvement in Assisted Living my grandpa had been over to Our House Assisted Living many times. He know what it looked like but he never thought that he would be a resident of the place. After a lot of discussion, we told him just to try it out for a month. Think of it as going on a cruise where you can have all the food you like, fun activities throughout the day, your own room and bathroom, etc. He finally said, “OK I will try it for you but I won’t like it and keep my home because I am going back.”
Our House Assisted Living sent their nurse out to Stonehenge for a nurse assessment that took about 30 minutes. She wanted to identify what cares and services my grandpa wanted and needed. She then assessed my grandma. We gave Our House a list of their medications and the administrator called to set up an appointment to discuss the move in process, paperwork, monthly fees, and services. The paperwork and meeting with the administrator took about an hour. It was very informative for my family and they said, why didn’t we move them in earlier?
Upon being discharged my grandpa had signed up for Legacy Home Health. This meant that Medicare would pay to have a Nurse, Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Social Worker, and others visit him at Our House Assisted Living for the next 4-6 weeks to make sure he was adjusting well and getting a little more rehab. Its a great service, and I would encourage anyone that is moving into Assisted Living to talk with a Home Health Company especially Legacy Healthcare. They did a great job.
Before my grandparents moved in we brought over their bed and favorite chairs from their home. We hung their pictures up on the walls and we made it look just like their place. We picked up my grandparents and we moved them in. They were very happy to see their apartment and how it was set up with their things. The staff at Our House Assisted Living had a welcome basket with some of their favorite treats, like peanuts and pepsi. My grandparents really liked that. After a few minutes, a couple of residents came by and introduced themselves along with the activity director, and food service manager. It was really nice and I could tell my grandpa was warming up to the place.
After a few weeks, my grandparents were fitting in really well. They didn’t go to many of the activities but they were out and about in the community quite a bit. They made a few new friends with some of the other residents. My grandpa really enjoyed that staff members and teased them a lot. Overall, my grandparents were adjusting and my grandpa hadn’t said a word about going back home.
My family and I would like to thank the wonderful staff members at Our House Assisted Living of Ogden. They made my grandparents feel so welcome and they truly took care of them as if they were their family members. The food has been great with the different options to choose from and the soup and salad bar have been so convenient. When we visit, my kids can go play miniature golf, or play on the swing set in the interior courtyard so my wife and I can visit without the kids jumping up and down on the bed and/or running down the hallways playing tag.
In preparation of moving my grandpa into Our House Assisted Living of Ogden we knew there was some kind of benefit for veterans in assisted living but we didn’t understand the process or the details. We did some research and found the US Department of Veterans Affairs website. The Aid & Attendance may be added to your monthly pension if you meet one of the following conditions:
– You require the aid of another person in order to perform personal functions required in everyday living, such as bathing, feeding, dressing, attending to wants of nature, adjusting prosthetic devices, or protecting yourself from the hazards of your daily environment.
-You are bedridden, in that your disability or disabilities requires that you remain in bed apart from any prescribed course of convalescence or treatment.
-You are a patient in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity.
-Your eyesight is limited to a corrected 5/200 visual acuity or less in both eyes; or concentric contraction of the visual field to 5 degrees or less
Someone is generally eligible for veteran’s pension if he or she
Was not discharged for dishonorable reasons; and,
Served 90 days of active military duty; and,
Served at least one day during wartime; and,
Had countable family income below a certain yearly limit; and,
Is age 65 years or older; or
Regardless of age is permanently disabled, not due to willful misconduct
My grandpa signed up for the army in 1942 at the age of 19 years old. He left for basic training to Camp Roberts. In December of 1943 he went South across the Equator to New Caledonia Island. My grandpa was trained in wire and phone communications. It was there that he received a telegram that his son Dale was born in January 1944. It would be more than 2 years before he would be able to see his son for the first time. He was then put on ship to New Zealand and was assigned to the 43rd division. On September 8, 1945 my grandpa was on a ship to Japan Main Land, but while the convoy moved North towards Japan the Air Force dropped the atomic bomb. The Japanese surrendered. How lucky he was. He told me that sometimes he thinks about if the atomic bomb wasn’t dropped then he probably wouldn’t be alive. One September 13, 1945 my grandpa and his division were the first to go in after the Japanese surrendered. My grandpa came home on October 18, 1945 to see his wife and son.
We also talked to the administration of Our House Assisted Living because we felt like my grandpa would qualify because he needed assistance with everyday activities. They suggested to call Utah Senior Planning. They had us a gather few documents like discharge papers, marriage certificate, financial information. Then Our House provided a service plan, nurse and doctor assessment, and the service agreement that included the monthly fee at the assisted living community. Senior Planning told us that it could take a few months to receive the benefit. After about 6 months we received notice that my grandpa would receive $1794.00 a month to pay for assisted living.
With my grandpa’s social security and Veteran’s benefit he can now cover the costs of living at Our House Assisted Living of Ogden without having to dip into his small savings account each month. He has his own apartment with plenty of room, 3 meals a day, multiple activities throughout the day to attend to, new relationships with other residents and staff members. My family and I can visit him anytime we like and he told me just a few weeks ago that he is happy. Assisted Living has been great for my grandpa and our family. At first he was hesitant and said that he didn’t want to move into a place with a lot of old people. He was a young 92 years old when he moved in. He is now 94 and we just celebrated Christmas with him. Even though he have to shout at the top of your lungs for him to hear you we sure enjoy seeing him and we hope he is around for many years to come.
About 2 years ago my grandparents Nina and Leslie Boswell were living at home and doing pretty well. My grandpa was still driving and would make sure my grandma was dressed in clean clothes and helped her get in and out of the shower. My grandma was getting real forgetful and would ask the same questions all day long. My grandpa had a lot of patience. He would make toast and hot chocolate for breakfast and some canned soup and/or a sandwich of some sorts for dinner. But most days they would drive up the street to Taco Bell and order a few items off the dollar menu. The staff were very kind and got to know my grandparents and their routine.
However, one day my grandpa, who was the main caregiver was really sick and collapsed on the floor by the bed. We think he was there for almost 24 hours. Luckily my Dad went by and was alerted by the situation and called 911. When asking my grandma, what happened to grandpa, she wasn’t even aware anything happened to him nor knew where he was. My grandpa had a severe UTI (urinary tract infection) and he almost died from it. He was in the hospital for about 3-4 days and then went to Stongehenge Rehabilitation in South Ogden for a few weeks where they took really good care of him even though he was really stubborn and didn’t think he needed to be there. My grandma couldn’t be alone so my mom, dad and family members made a schedule and everyone did as much as they could to make sure grandma was safe and taken care of.
While my grandpa was in rehab my family and I started talking about what we are going to do with them. For the past 17 years I have been in the Assisted Living industry and my partners and I own/operate 15 communities in Utah. We operate under SAL Management Group. My siblings looked to me for answers regarding the care and situation. I recommended Our House Assisted Living of Ogden. Our House Assisted Living of Ogden opened in June of 2015 and my grandparents moved into Our House in July of 2015. I am so glad we were open at the time. The community has 43 private studio, one bedrooms, and two bedrooms with certified nursing assistants 24 hours a day to help my grandparents with their daily personal activities. My grandpa was doing really well after being discharged from Stonehedge, however, my grandma started needing a lot more help. The CNA’s would help my grandma shower, comb her hair, make sure she had on clean, appropriate clothing, administer her medications and much more. At first, my grandpa kept saying that they didn’t need to be there and that he could take care of grandma at home but we kept encouraging him to just take it one day at a time and enjoy the 3 home cooked meals a day, activities, and with the push of a button someone would get him whatever he wanted. For us as family members it was such a relief that we didn’t have to worry about them being home alone and something really bad happening. We were fortunate that things happened they way they did.
Grandpa Cooking at Sister’s House
My grandpa was born in Mt. Emmons Utah in 1923. He served in the Army during World War II for 3 years and was trained in wire and phone communications, he built his own house, he could fix anything, he was a teacher, an entrepreneur, father of 2 boys, married to my grandma for 74 years and now he had to move into a place where he felt he couldn’t be independent. This was frustrating to him he didn’t want to live in a place with all these “old people.” I mean, he was only 92 years old? However, after a few weeks he started to get to know a few of the other residents, but he really gravitated toward the staff and started teasing them like he did us throughout our lives. He started to enjoy their company and seeing them everyday.
My grandma was born in Vernal Utah in 1925 and at the age of 17 married my grandpa. My grandma raised 2 boys and us 5 grandchildren. She was always at our big events supporting us in everything we did. However, at this time in my grandma’s life she wasn’t doing very good. For sometime she didn’t know who we were until we told her. We could tell that she knew we were special people but couldn’t quite know who we were. At one time, I remember by grandma telling me that she knew her mind was going and she was scared. When I would cover over to the Assisted Living community to visit her I would grab her hands, knell before her and look straight into her eyes and say it was me, your favorite grandson. She would smile and laugh and it was so good to see. My grandma slowly stopped eating and would have a hard time getting out of bed. The assisted living nurse suggested that we talk to a hospice company. A hospice nurse and aid would come in just about everyday to give the extra care that my grandma needed. Finally on a Sunday night in August my sister called and said that we better go see grandma. It might be the last time. So our family gathered in grandma’s room to say our last good byes. We knew it wasn’t going to be long and we were crushed to see my grandpa go through this after 74 years of marriage. She passed away a few hours later.
Grandpa with Almost all the Grandkids
After my grandma passed away, we thought my grandpa was going to pack his things and head home. When we asked him what he wanted to do he said that he wanted to stay at the assisted living home. We were very grateful for this and we all thought this was the best. We couldn’t imagine our grandpa going home alone after his wife of 74 years old passed away. What we he do? He would sit alone in his house watching tv or worrying about things. At Our House Assisted Living of Ogden he wouldn’t be alone, have good food, fun activities to do if he wanted, friends, and knowing that he would be in a safe place if something were to happen to him.
With my grandpa being a World War II veteran the government has an Assisted Living benefit. We applied through Utah Senior Planning. We needed to gather my grandpa discharge papers, marriage certificate, financial information and Our House Assisted Living needed to provide the nurse assessment, service plan, and service agreement, along with a doctors assessment. After a few months of waiting my grandpa now receives $1,794.00 a month to help pay for Assisted Living. This is a great benefit and I would encourage all veteran’s and spouses to apply.
Even though I am involved with the management of Our House Assisted Living of Ogden I am not there all the time and I have to trust the administrator and her staff to take care of the residents. Myself and family have been impressed with the care and professionalism that Our House has shown my grandma and grandpa. At SAL Management Group we have a saying that we take care of our residents as if they are our own parents/grandparents. I know this to be true with my grandparents at Our House Assisted Living of Ogden. Thank you to all the caregivers, cooks, managers, housekeepers, maintenance, and activities for making my grandparents lives better.
Our House Assisted Living of Orem is a 16 apartment Type 1 Assisted Living and a 16 apartment Type 2 Assisted Living on 1 campus. Our House Assisted Living of Orem is located in Orem, Utah. The community is located at 410 South Main Street Orem, Utah 84058. Office phone is 801-226-4343, Come Meet Us.
We offer assistance with medication administration, showering, dressing, incontinence, secure memory care, 24 hour CNA staffing, 3 delicious meals a day, laundry and many other services. Our private studio apartments are well lite and very spacious with large closets and bathrooms. Please call 801-226-4343 for more details and to select your apartment.
Our House Assisted Living of Orem will always deliver a “WOW” experience. We hold each of our care givers to a higher standard. We expect them to deliver a WOW experience to each of our residents. Assisted Living is a very consumer-driven industry, our assisted living community offers a wide range of options, program levels of care, and specialty services.
We are regulated by the State of Utah and are held to a higher standard of care. Come in to Our House Assisted Living of Orem to see for yourself what the WOW experience is. We enjoy each and every day, taking care of the wonderful residents that are in our care at Our House Assisted Living of Orem. Stop by or call for a tour!!
Classic Car Rides
It was the perfect day in Orem, Utah for some Classic Car Rides. It started with a wonderful afternoon at Our House Assisted Living of Orem. Local classic car owner Craig Hull and his great friends showed up to take our residents of Our House Assisted Living of Orem on a “ride down memory lane” in some beautiful vintage cars. Memories came flooding back of fun date nights with their sweethearts, cruising Main Street in Orem Utah and the days when a great car cost $2000. Thanks so much for a fabulous afternoon Craig.
We are always very lucky to have such wonderful people in our community that are willing to give such wonderful service to our residents. We love to give the residents chances to walk or ride down memory lane and to do some of those activities that they enjoyed in their youth.
Home cooking evokes memories of special events and family meals. Today we enjoyed hearing some of the memories that our residents shared from their childhood and family life. It is always such a pleasure to listen to our residents at Our House Assisted Living of Orem and their wonderful stories. We can and need to continue to learn from their wonderful experiences and lessons that they have learned and grown from.
We are very each day to be able to spend time in their presents. We can become a better person and friend by listening to their counsel and life lessons. It is a pleasure to serve the residents of Our House Assisted Living of Orem each and every day.