22 River Road, Newcastle, ME 04553

Independent and Assisted Living
Memory Loss Community
In Home Care in Midcoast Maine

Since 1927

Chef Adams shares her Holiday Oyster Recipe:

Damariscotta River Oysters 12ea.

Unsalted Butter: 2 Tbsp Divided

Shallots: 1 Tbsp Minced

Champagne or White Wine: ¼ cup

Heavy Cream: ¼ cup

Leeks: 2- white part only sliced thin

Honey: 2 tsp

Fresh Dill: 1 Tbsp Chopped

Shuck oysters, place oysters on oven proof dish. I like to use muffin tins. In a sauce pan melt 1- Tbsp butter, add shallots, sauté until translucent. Add champagne and reduce by half. Add cream and reduce on medium low heat until thick. Melt remaining butter in a sauté pan and add leeks. Sauté until all the moisture is cooked off. Add honey and reduce until thick. Divide leeks among the oysters, sprinkle with fresh dill. Spoon a tablespoon of champagne cream over each oyster and bake at 400 degrees for 6-8 minutes until browned and bubbly.

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December 9 Harbor View Cottage at The Lincoln Home Hosts Open House

Discover what makes Harbor View Cottage a very unique Memory Loss Community in midcoast Maine. Join us at our Open House on Saturday, December 9, from 10am – 2pm, to learn more about our holistic approach to memory loss care.

Our safe and secure community at Harbor View Cottage is a home-like haven of professional and loving care for residents with Alzheimer’s disease and other cognitive impairments. Specially trained staff engage each resident individually and personally promoting feelings of success and accomplishment, contentment and self-esteem, enrichment and engagement, appropriate to the level of each resident.

Lois Burnham, dedicated caregiver, Father Christmas and Betty H. at Harbor View Cottage

A high staffing ratio of licensed staff certified in dementia care, on-staff RN’s, and a holistic approach to medication management, ensures top notch medical support. Working in partnership with the individual, family, and physician, we develop a lifestyle plan that addresses each person’s physical, psychosocial and activity/recreational needs. Ongoing communication with families encourages family involvement and understanding of the program to enhance the life of each resident.

Healthy, well balanced home cooked meals are served around our dining room table. In the warmer months, we enjoy outdoor garden walking paths, and a lovely patio with views of the harbor. Our bus takes residents to fun and engaging outings in and around the beautiful midcoast. Each resident has their own Ipod, with music chosen specifically geared to their interests.

We have an opening for your loved one to become part of our family. Join us to learn more on Saturday, or call Steve Raymond for an individual tour, 563-3350. Please park at The Lincoln Home, 22 River Road, Newcastle, and we will transport you across the street, as parking is limited.

Daily respite programs provide socialization and companionship.

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Double the Fun

It is always fun when Stewart Hanley and his sidekick Pogie visit both his grandmothers, Olive Hart and Ruby Hanley who are living at The Lincoln Home.  Having both grandmothers here together is a rare pleasure for all!

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Age Friendly Communities in Maine

Steve Raymond & Jill Wallace,
Age Friendly Seniors

I want to start this post with a bold statement. Every politician in this state at any level of government should be judged in great part by their knowledge and proactive engagement with senior-related and workforce issues in Maine. This is because Maine’s aging demographics … both our growing aged population, as well as our shrinking young worker population … will directly affect every single citizen, every business, our overall economy, and the resilience of the social fabric of our communities.

Our representatives and senators need to be held to account for policies that move Maine forward with clarity and purpose. We also see that it is particularly town selectmen and managers all over the state who can play crucial roles in decentralized, grassroots, community-based efforts to create age-friendly towns and cities.

As the public representative for The Lincoln Home Senior Retirement Community, I have great pride in the industry of residential care for seniors, and great pride in the excellence of The Lincoln Home. However, I also recognize that residential care is an excellent consumer choice if you can afford that choice, however, residential care is not the social solution to the evolving senior housing and care deficiencies in our state. This is why the management and Board of Directors of the not-for-profit Lincoln Home work in support of age-friendly communities in Lincoln County.

Today I’m focusing on the Town of Bowdoinham, which has a demonstrated commitment over the last several years of providing the authority and leadership to create an age-friendly community. The Maine Council on Aging and the AARP have recognized Bowdoinham as an age-friendly leader, and Bowdoinham was the first Northern New England town designated as an age-friendly community by the World Health Organization in 2014.

The Town of Bowdoinham Select Board completed an assessment of the needs, supports and services for optimal aging in Bowdoinham during 2012. The assessment identified five key areas: Access to information; coordinated town leadership and advocacy for older residents; transportation; housing; and a central gathering place for seniors and community members.

The needs assessment led to the creation of a nine-member Advisory Committee on Aging to provide advocacy for all local senior-related issues, and to report back to the five elected select people and town manager on age-friendly actions to be taken.

Patricia Oh, LMSW, was appointed coordinator of older adult services to lead this committee. One measure of the brilliance of the work accomplished by the Bowdoinham Advisory Committee on Aging is that they used assessment criteria for age-friendly communities created by the World Health Organization, and specifically adapted the WHO recommendations to their local needs. In 2014, Patricia Oh and the ACOA submitted a very thorough report to town leaders and to the World Health Organization titled, “Measuring the Age-friendliness of Bowdoinham, Maine, United States of America.”

It is the appointment of this committee with a paid leader chairing it, and then the proactive engagement and cooperation of the town manager and select board, along with hundreds of volunteer hours by the advisory committee in community projects, that has led the little town of Bowdoinham to accomplish many projects large and small.

They have done everything from improving the walkability of the village and increasing accessibility of public spaces and buildings, to organizing a variety of social activities, and organizing volunteers who contribute their unique gifts and time to make the town a better place for everybody.

Just this past week, the AARP recognized Bowdoinham with a grant for funds to purchase building supplies to make raised garden beds for those who can no longer kneel or sit on the ground to plant, but who still want to raise their own vegetables.

Of note is the winning proposal expands these age-friendly efforts beyond the Town of Bowdoinham. The grant will engage other gardeners from Bowdoinham, Bowdoin, and Richmond to form a regional garden club and will feature guest speakers from the University of Maine Co-operative Extension. The simple measures undertaken are simultaneously addressing issues of food insecurity and social isolation in an easy, simple way that generates much good.

So … Whoddathunk? Bowdoinham is a community of about 2,800 residents, and look at its amazing accomplishments. Bowdoinham demonstrates that dedicated people in the smallest towns can create and implement amazing and even revolutionary ideas.

There are 80 other communities in Maine working to make their communities more age-friendly. Harpswell, Bowdoinham and Boothbay are powerful examples right here in the Midcoast.

Communities are learning from each other. At the Maine Council on Aging Wisdom Summit last week, Patricia Oh led a panel discussion, titled “Maine’s Aging in Place Revolution.” There were town representatives from Bethel, Cumberland, Harpswell and Readfield, each describing the efforts of their towns in creating age-friendly communities.

Maybe your town managers would like to move towards a more age-friendly community, too. Ask them about it in your next town meeting. Patricia Oh tells me that she receives three to four requests for information every month from towns around Maine.

For more information about the Bowdoinham Advisory Committee on Aging, visit www.bowdoinham.com/aging-bowdoinham-committee.

For information on age-friendly communities all over the country, visit www.aarp.org/livable-communities/network-age-friendly-communities.

For information on The Lincoln Home’s independent and assisted living, or safe and secure memory care, contact Steve Raymond at 207-563-3350.

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Culinary Specialties at The Lincoln Home

 

One may not associate the art of fine dining with senior living communities, but the chefs at The Lincoln Home in Newcastle take their food preparation very seriously. Head Chef Julie Adams, along with Chef Shana York and Chef Brittney Meservier have a healthy competitive and creative spirit that drives the of level of culinary excellence in everything they serve at The Lincoln Home. Residents look forward to meals and rave about the repertoire and quality of the food choices. Chef Adams and her staff believe in using locally sourced seafood from Fisherman’s Catch and Mill Cove Seafood, local produce from Spear Farm, Clarks Farm and the Farmer’s Market, to create delicious and healthy meals every day, 365 days a year.

Uniquely situated on the banks of the Damariscotta River, residents can watch the Norumbega Farm oyster operation from the dining room windows. These locally harvested oysters are the very ones served at The Lincoln Home. Chef Adams shares her Holiday Oyster Recipe:

Damariscotta River Oysters 12ea.

Unsalted Butter: 2 Tbsp Divided

Shallots: 1 Tbsp Minced

Champagne or White Wine: ¼ cup

Heavy Cream: ¼ cup

Leeks: 2- white part only sliced thin

Honey: 2 tsp

Fresh Dill: 1 Tbsp Chopped

Shuck oysters, place oysters on oven proof dish. I like to use muffin tins. In a sauce pan melt 1- Tbsp butter, add shallots, sauté until translucent. Add champagne and reduce by half. Add cream and reduce on medium low heat until thick. Melt remaining butter in a sauté pan and add leeks. Sauté until all the moisture is cooked off. Add honey and reduce until thick. Divide leeks among the oysters, sprinkle with fresh dill. Spoon a tablespoon of champagne cream over each oyster and bake at 400 degrees for 6-8 minutes until browned and bubbly.

On December 5, a special holiday meal will be served to residents and family members. The menu consists of roasted red pepper and tomato soup, mint crusted rack of lamb, orange balsamic cornish game hen, apple raisin stuffing, creamed spinach and parsnips, mustard glazed carrots and shallots, with potato and celery root gratin. Dessert will be The Lincoln Home signature Triple Layer Cheese Cake, always a holiday favorite, or Pumpkin Pie.

Chef Adams shares, “I can not remember a time when I was not passionate about food and I always know when a meal is prepared with love and respect for the ingredients being used.” Perhaps when The Lincoln Home residents and guests sing praises to the chefs on a daily basis, that is the best reward of all.

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In-Home Assistance for Veterans with One2One Home Care

Amazingly, almost 20 percent of all people are military veterans. Forty-two percent of men who are age 65 and older are veterans. The Department of Veterans Affairs statistics show that close to one-third of veterans live with disabilities.

In the senior care world, “living with a disability,” describes a person living with an inability to manage one or more “activities of daily living.”

The best way to understand this is to think of the things we need to do when we first wake up in the morning. We have to come to a standing position from our bed and get to the bathroom; be able to bathe and dress ourselves and prepare breakfast. These are things able-bodied people take for granted, but can pose minor or impossible degrees of difficulty for people “living with a disability.”

There can be more complex care needs, such as medication management and wound care. One veteran client previously served by The Lincoln Home’s One2One Home Care was a quadriplegic veteran who was mostly cared for by her veteran husband, with assistance from in-home caregivers.

In other words, veteran care needs of any age can be incredibly challenging and complex. And sometimes the care needs are as simple as some help with household chores. The services available for veterans living with disabilities can be in-home care assistance; assisted living residential care; nursing home care; and memory loss care.

The Lincoln Home’s One2One Home Care has become a significant provider of in-home care services in the Midcoast and reaching into Augusta and Waterville and Cumberland County. Manager Valerie Lovelace is herself a Navy veteran, and takes great pride in expanding the services to our local veterans.

The AARP has recently released a state-by-state report on long term services and supports. The report measures 25 different Quality of Care factors, with state-by-state rankings, and showing how the care factors in each state have either improved or declined.

The clearly stated intent of the AARP is to exert political influence to improve the Quality of Care for veterans throughout our country. Maine is ranked 18th overall in the country relative to other states. Our neighboring states of New Hampshire ranked 16th; Massachusetts at 11th; and Vermont is ranked third in the country.

It’s nice to know that Maine is ranked somewhere above the median in our country, however, that number does not tell the entire story. There is room for improvement in some areas, while other factors are difficult to improve upon because we are such a rural state.

As we say so often, everything that makes Maine such a beautiful place to live also makes it a challenge to provide healthcare. For example, the problem Valerie Lovelace and her staff in One2One Home Care face every day is the logistics of providing a caregiver to a veteran living in a very rural location, down on a peninsula, and possibly in terrible weather. It’s not always easy to do!

If you or someone you know is a veteran aged 65 or older and you’re having a difficult time managing at home, you may qualify for a few hours per week of assistance in your home. You’d be surprised at just how helpful a little assistance can be.

The best way for Maine veterans to inquire about in-home care assistance is to have a conversation with your physician at Togus VA Medical Center. Your physician will certify your need if you qualify, and make the referral to their social service department.

A final thought … it is common for veterans to not want to ask for help. We hope that you will not stay stuck in that trap, and be willing to start a conversation with your doctor that can provide you with some beneficial assistance.

You can contact Val Lovelace with One2One Home Care at 207-563-3038 for more information.

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Lincoln Home Resident Celebrates Twenty Years of Service to Skidompha Library

    Family and friends gathered on November 7th at Skidompha Library  to thank and celebrate Billy Flanagan for her  twenty years of volunteer work at the library. Billy has monitored the reading / computer room every Tuesday morning for over 20 years, helping those with questions and making all feel welcomed.  Billy will be missed by many as she suspends  her volunteer duties for the winter.
    Pam Gormley, director of Skidompha, thanked Billy for her loyal volunteer hours. She presented a lovely wooden carved ‘wise owl’  to Billy in gratitude, while sharing some fun stories about their times together at the library. Billy sets the example to all of us about the importance of volunteering, making this community a better place for all of us. 

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If “Age is Just a Number,” What Can We Do When We Really Try?

Pat Gallant-Charette
Photo Credit: Brian Fitzgerald

We’ve all heard the expression, “He’s 93 years old, and sharper than a tack.” It expresses our admiration and awe for people who have unusual abilities at an advanced age. Whether those abilities are athletic, artistic or cognitive, people tend to feel surprised that older folks can accomplish things that seem larger than life.

At the Maine Wisdom Summit, hosted by the Maine Council on Aging, I met keynote speaker 66-year-old Pat Gallant-Charette from Westbrook. This past June, Pat successfully swam the 34-mile English Channel in just under 18 hours. She set a record by being the oldest woman to ever make this swim.

You’d think that would be enough for one year. But this year Pat also became the oldest woman to swim the 26-mile crossing between the Hawaiian islands of Molokai and Oahu. For good measure, she threw in the 32-mile crossing from Niagara-on-the-Lake in Ontario to the provincial capital of Toronto.

So far, this Westbrook mother, grandmother and retired nurse has set five world records in marathon swimming. She has also swum the Catalina Channel in California; the Tsugaru Strait in Japan, and the North Channel between Northern Ireland and Scotland. The prestigious Swimming World Magazine has named Pat “one of the greatest open water swimmers of all time.”

Pat started swimming at the relatively older age of 46. She began as a response to her grief and depression over the sudden death of her younger brother Robbie, who was an avid swimmer and died of a heart attack at the young age of 34.

Robbie had twice won the Peaks to Portland 2.4 mile swim. His untimely death left behind his wife and 3-year-old son and bereaved family. Pat told the audience the story of her son Tom wanting to swim the Peaks to Portland “as a tribute to Uncle Robbie.”

Pat says she responded, “Tom, that’s so sweet, I wish I could do the same.”

Tom replied, “You can, if you try.”

Those few simple words inspired Pat to begin swim training with the goal of swimming the Peaks in honor of her brother. She completed the Peaks, coming in last, and met by her nephew, Robbie’s son, at the finish. Now, all these years later, her life has been radically transformed by her progressively longer and more challenging swims, becoming a multiple world record holder, fueled by her mantra, “You can, if you try.”

Pat still swims the Peaks every year.

So is Pat a superwoman? Well, yes, but also, she was a woman who started her journey swimming laps in a pool at the age of 46. Paraphrasing the old Chinese expression, “Her journey began with a single stroke.”

But what’s the moral of this story? The moral is actually a question. For those of us who are aging, what can we accomplish that would be totally unexpected, if we try? It is a very partial perspective to place Pat’s accomplishment on a pedestal. We see her as an example that we all can have potentials that could enrich our lives, if we try. We don’t have to break world records to enrich our aging years with new endeavors. We can start small and see where it takes us.

Maybe you are drawn to writing poetry, taking a painting class, volunteering your time for useful causes, or walking a mile. Maybe you want to gain control over your diet and blood sugar. Or now that you’ve had that knee or hip surgery, really embrace the rehabilitation exercises and get a new lease on life. Maybe you want to finally downsize the decades of belongings you’ve put off for so long, or heal a damaged relationship that needs communication and reaching out.

Or maybe you’d like to do something seemingly wild like training for an event in the Maine Senior Games. They actually had a 93-year-old javelin and discus thrower this year who had rehabbed herself from back surgery!

Whatever it is that calls to us … Our age is not necessarily the obstacle. It’s our thoughts about our age that can obstruct us, but we can change that.

We can do it if we try!

If you’d like to learn more about Pat Gallant-Charette, you’ll see her blog at www.patgalant.blogspot.com. She has written some cool and inspirational stories.

For more on the Maine Senior Games, visit www.smaaa.org.

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Having Three Nurses on Staff Positions The Lincoln Home Above and Beyond

A Registered Nurse is the best insurance and peace of mind a senior living community can offer their residents. With seniors experiencing health issues, taking a number of medications and interfacing with many health providers simultaneously, having a nurse to manage all the aspects of a resident’s health eases the burden on residents and their families. A nurse keeps a bead on an individual’s health and needs, consults with pharmacists, specialists, therapists, and physicians, then communicates between all the disciplines to insure all are working towards the senior’s wellbeing. Most senior living communities have one Registered Nurse on staff or a part-time consultant. The Lincoln Home has three RNs; the Executive Director, Lynn Norgang, the Director of Nursing, Millie Jones-Farnham and the RN Nurse Manager of Harbor View Cottage, Linda Morrison. The three RN’s work together as a team to insure that each resident’s care and wellness needs are met every day of the year. The Lincoln Home RN team offers an integrated approach to providing extraordinary care and peace of mind.

RN’s, Millie Jones-Farnham, Linda Morrison and Lynn Norgang

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A Tribute to Retiring LCTV Director Mary Ellen Crowley

My friend and colleague Mary Ellen Crowley received the diagnosis of cervical cancer this past year. She has gone through three rounds of treatment with radiation and chemotherapy. Cervical cancer is a tough diagnosis to begin with, but we all held out a hope that she would beat the odds. But then it spread to her lymph nodes, and now it has made its way into her lungs.

Mary Ellen is just 62. She made the decision to stop treatment and enjoy the life she has left. As I write this, Mary Ellen is leaving within the hour to head south to Massachusetts to live with her sister Pat, who will take care of her during this final passage of her life.

Mary Ellen looks remarkably good right now. She has been working in the LCTV studio to help with the transition of the management to Bristol resident Abby Ingraham. A bunch of us helped with packing belongings over the weekend, with laughs and sadness and food and the kinds of things friends can share in these circumstances. I shared more laughs and conversation at the studio yesterday with Mary Ellen, and goodbye hugs, and appreciation and acknowledgment of each other we have developed over the last couple of years.

Mary Ellen has been with LCTV for better than 10 years. She first became involved as a member of the board of directors, and her interest in production drew her quickly into a hands-on role, and for better than nine years now, she has been the station director, which has meant basically doing almost everything.

When I first arrived in my position with the Lincoln Home, I realized what a wonderful educational resource LCTV can be for this community. I approached Mary Ellen with the idea for the “Spotlight on Seniors” show, and within a short time, she provided the training for our production crew, and we have gone on to produce more than 50 shows.

Mary Ellen has a personal passion for giving a voice to people who might not otherwise have a say in community matters. She says, “The most important aspect of LCTV’s mission is to educate people about how to express themselves with video and then give them a place to air their productions.”

With her support and guidance, we were able to produce shows to inform our local community on issues such as food insecurity and our local Meals on Wheels program and food pantries; affordable housing; legislative issues such as the “Keep ME Home” initiative; proponents on each side of the “Death with Dignity” legislation; senior exercise and fitness and preventing and treating diabetes; hospice and end-of-life care; elder law issues; and looking at the broader demographic and social issues affecting seniors throughout our state.

Throughout all of our work together, Mary Ellen has always shown herself to be a great human being … simple, practical, humble and humane.

And in my view, this is how she has approached her illness and now her terminal diagnosis. She has shown great equanimity, living in the present moment, and making decisions about her treatment, and then her decision to stop treatment, with an open heart and practical presence of mind. She is choosing to live her final time with quality of life instead of chasing an ephemeral quantity of time.

Mary Ellen and I got on camera together to film a “goodbye and farewell” video to all of her friends here in Lincoln County.

Because of the poignancy of that show, I decided to set up a GoFundMe campaign to benefit Mary Ellen. I hope you can see your way to contributing a few dollars to help give Mary Ellen a beautiful send off from Lincoln County, Maine, the place she loves as a home, and now which she must leave all too soon.

You can see Mary Ellen’s goodbye video and, only if you wish, make a small contribution to her benefit, at www.gofundme.com/the-mary-ellen-crowley-care-fund. A donation is not required to view the video.

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