Thursday, December 17, 2009

Christmas Party

Yesterday was the family Christmas shindig at the old folks home. My brother and I both went; families were encouraged to attend. A lot of people showed up. On Thanksgiving, the dining room was half full mostly because it was on the holiday itself. Families were doing their own thing and some came to pick up their relatives to take them home. For this party, the dining room was full and there were tables set up in the halls and lobby to accommodate everyone.

We arrived about 11 a.m. and found Mom on her favorite sofa. She didn't seem very excited even though she hasn't seen us together since we dropped her off. Her understanding of the world goes up and down and I'd rate this as a mediocre day for her.

Dinner was served at noon. As with Thanksgiving, they did a very good job with the food. Broiled chicken breast (boneless, skinless), beef stroganoff, scalloped potatoes, stuffing, shrimp cocktail, raspberry jello, roll, and a strawberry shortcake layer cake. We heard several people say that the food they've seen at other places like this pales in comparison. Hearing those sorts of things reassures me that we made the right decision for Mom.

My brother and I compared notes about the experiences we've had with the various other residents. It was interesting to see so many of the children of the residents and how many look just like their parents.

Most of the folks that worked there thought that my brother and I were twins. They never see us together and a couple people thought we were the same person. We do look alike; like brothers, not twins, but whatever. The bad news is that they all thought I was the OLDER brother but I'm 10 YEARS YOUNGER! I'm choosing to think that my brother looks young for his age (he does) rather than I look old for mine (I hope not).

A couple of singers brought a banjo with them and the residents were all herded into the activities room. They sang Christmas carols and most of the residents sang along. Everyone chimed in to sing Rudolph and Frosty.

Halfway through, Santa showed up. A big man in a suit, and I do mean BIG man. He "Ho Ho Ho"-ed, shouted Merry Christmas, and tried to pay individual attention to everyone.

The recreation directors had organized a gift exchange that was like a Secret Santa. All the families received a note with their November invoice to buy a gift for a certain person. That, or donate $10, and they'd buy the gift for you. While Santa was there, they called out the names, the residents would raise their hand, and Santa brought the present over to them.

It was a pretty good day. For everything that was going on, it all went off without a hitch!


Greg said...

I agree. The home you've chosen sounds very good in the degree of thought they put into their care. (And the food sounds great, too).

On the issue of your age, you do NOT look 46 - you look younger, especially now. I'll admit that you did look older in your previous photo, but that was probably the sepia tone influencing me - I think I commented on how much younger you looked when you changed to the full-face "photo with the eyes".

As for the discrepancy in you and your Brother's apparent age, it may be that years of caring for your Mom, getting little sleep on that sofa, have taken a toll, but I think you're wonderful for having done it. I've just read up on ISTJ on Wikipedia and I was nodding at the "loyalty" part.

Merry Christmas to you, your Mom.... and to your OLDER Brother

Greg x

Latane Barton said...

That sounded like a very nice day to spend with your Mom. I think most 'homes' try to include family in their small celebrations of various holidays. Sounds like your Mom is in a good place.

citygirl said...

I'm back after a couple of weeks of chilling at home and catching up on sleep.

Sounds like you had a really nice Christmas visit with your mom. The food sounds really good!

I get that age discrepancy with my older sister all the time too and I'm also the younger sibling (by 11 years). I agree with Greg - it's all our years of caring for our moms that is catching up with us.

Hope 2010 holds good things for you. :) citygirl

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