Elite News

May 4 was a very fun afternoon for our residents. “Quatro de Mayo” was our way of getting a head start on celebrating Mexican culture and heritage a day early. We couldn’t possibly wait another day!


Ashland House

New Resident:

** New Resident Spotlight**

Please welcome our new resident Anita Frack to Ashland House. Anita

was born in Oregon and raised her family there. Anita met her husband at a motorcycle rally and it was love at first sight. After dating for three weeks they took the march down the aisle and were married for 53 years.

Anita and her husband spent a lot of time together riding Harley Davidson’s throughout the state. They had three children together, who had seven grandchildren. Anita was a housewife when her children were young and she watched other children so she could stay home with her own. She then ventured out and became a bartender which she did for fifteen years and loved it.

Anita loves to read and enjoys her crossword puzzles. She is also very gifted as a gardener. Anita grew her own vegetables for her family and had quite the flower garden. She continues to enjoy gardening and is very active here on campus planting flowers for other’s to enjoy.

What's happening:

February was a very busy month in both Ashland and Jefferson House. We had a month full of parties and fun activities, including a Mardi Gras party with a special king cake created by Chef Deb from Jefferson House. It wouldn't be a Mardi Gras party without beads and masks! Everyone had a good time eating delicious snacks, chatting and dancing to traditional Mardi Gras tunes.

We celebrated Anita in Ashland House and Annie in Jefferson House birthdays this month. Naturally, we had cake, ice cream and family to add to the birthday festivities. We are looking forward to next month, with more parties and making more memories.

Rainier and Helens

Rainier and Helens house, as always, stayed busy this month. Despite record rain levels in February we stayed dry for the most part. One way we kept our minds off the dreary weather was walking a couple houses down to the Larch House Movie Theater. The large screen and the smell of popcorn in our popcorn makers gave it the feel of an actual movie theater. To, metaphorically, cut the ribbon to our movie theater we kicked it off with a Super bowl party. To get any closer you would have to actually be at the game! Granted, most of the residents enjoyed the food more than the game but it was still a great time.  

Rainier house hosted the Valentine's Day party this year and the house was filled to the brim with residents, family, and staff. Everyone was dancing, eating, socializing and someone even started a game with the balloons. Needless to say, we had a great time.

Tebo's, an Oatfield favorite, will be closing it's doors, after 62 years, on May 3rd so we made sure to go this month. It's popular for its desserts, especially the giant strawberry shortcake. It will be missed but we will find another favorite in the future.

A few highlights coming in March are lunch at The Ram, a trip to Multnomah Falls, and going to the movie theater. Family night dinner will be on March 8th and all are encouraged to join us.  

Fanno Creek

We had a busy month in February! Family night was a wonderful get-together for the residents, their families and friends. The chefs wowed everyone with their culinary skills, and everyone retired that evening with full, happy tummies!

For a Valentine treat we set up and decorated tables in the breezeway near the piano and served the resident's a nice lunch as Monte, the piano player, serenaded them with love songs.

On Valentine's Day the St. Anthony's school third graders visited us bearing gifts of homemade Valentine's cards and came equipped with pen and paper to “interview” the residents. Our resident, Larene, played the piano for us, and then she invited one of the third graders to join her. It was a very special day with lots of smiles, conversation, and laughter. The residents talked about how special it was for days, and the teacher told us that the students were very touched by our wonderful residents.

On our outing to the Tigard Library we were given a tour of the facility and a couple of the residents signed up for library passes. On the way out we stopped at the new Literary Feast Café, and enjoyed a warm cup of coffee or tea before we headed back to Fanno.

On one special Saturday Oregon Dream Ponies brought one of the Miniature Therapy Horses to share with the residents. Ruby, who is only 26 inches tall, met with each and every resident before she left. She drew a couple of residents out of their rooms that don't normally feel comfortable in group settings. There were also two who didn't feel well enough to come out, so we took Ruby to them. Every single resident was enthralled and touched by Ruby's size, demeanor, and absolute charm (not to mention her handler's ability to make each and every resident feel special with her own personal charm.)

Some of the residents helped make decorations for our Mardi Gras party and we decorated Spruce dining room and dined on an authentic King Cake and dressed up a little for fun.  All the residents enjoyed themselves, but one special gentleman exclaimed after it was over, “It's been a good day!”

In March, we are looking forward to visiting The Wall of Sound exhibit at the World of Speed Museum and The Oregon Historical Society!

From the Founder

It's hard to believe that February has already passed. In this month's newsletter, we are honoring the team members who won the “you cared and I noticed” raffle at the February Family night. It is important, that when you see a team member go above and beyond, that you recognize them by filling out the card.

We had some great events in February and have more planned for the months to come. We are also getting ready for a wonderful garden this year. If you drive up the hill to Oatfield Estates, you see the grow lights on as they help the starts get ready to be planted outside.

If you have time, we would love for you to volunteer either in the garden, or attend some outings with your loved one. It always makes it more fun to have a family member along. If you are interested, please let the Activities Coordinator in your house know.

Elite Care Adventures

February equals fun, fun, fun! Just because it's raining outside that didn't stop us from painting the town red. It's all in the name: Adventure. We have introduced several new programs for our more active residents on campus.

Weekly shopping trips occur every Monday which means we go to the grocery, pottery, bead store or shopping at the mall. Sometimes the residents want to stop for lunch on the way back or a cup of coffee after a couple hours of shopping.

Wednesdays offer museum trips or the Aquatic Center. This month we went to both the Portland Art Museum and the Oregon Historical Society.  Twice a month, we take an exercise class at the North Clackamas Aquatic Center.  This activity is becoming increasingly popular among the residents and may increase to every Wednesday, if requested by our residents.

Fridays are reserved for lunch outings. We wanted to expand our palate and discover Portland and Milwaukie's food scene. That led us to the Pine Street Market in downtown Portland, Rivershore in Gladstone and Stone Cliff Inn in Carver.

Tuesday's and Thursday's are our on campus classes. We are heavily focusing on art classes as we have our semi-annual Art Walk coming up, fast, in September. We are also offering relief from the opposite sex with our Women and Men Groups.

A couple times a month we go on Saturday and Sunday outings. In February we attended the Oregon Ballet Theatre's production of Swan Lake. The story and dancing captivated the residents, bringing back memories for Annie who performed on Broadway in New York before she moved to San Francisco to host a talk show.

March is gearing up to be another great month full of adventure. Stay tuned for more updates this month and feel free to join the fun!

Elite News – September 2016

Fanno Creek

Summer is nearly over! We all had great fun at Fanno Creek this August. Our busy month included an outing to Swan Island Dahlias in Canby, where we viewed the beautiful Dahlia fields as we sat in the shade eating ice cream.

We also took a tour of the Oregon Humane Society where Barb gave us a wonderful tour of the facilities and educated us on its history. Can you believe the Oregon Humane Society is 148 years old? It was founded in 1868 by noted humanitarian Thomas Lamb Eliot, and it is the third oldest humane society in the nation!

Unfortunately, we had to cancel our outing to Antique Powerland due to one hundred degree weather, but it is back on the agenda in September. We made up for it by going to Live Laugh Love Art in Tigard where we made fused glass projects that turned out amazingly well!

We have our walking club every Sunday where we walk the Fanno Creek trail to downtown Tigard. We enjoy taking a break on one of the benches and people watching before we turn around and head home. Occasionally, we walk up to Woodard Park and sit and for a few minutes and enjoy the weather and the children playing.

For our lunch outings, we visited both Hayden's Lakefront Grill and Stanford's in Tanasbourne where we dined on exquisite cuisine as our waiters treated us like royalty. Our dessert outings were to the famous Rose's in Sherwood and to Shari's in Beaverton for some of America's best pie ala mode (although, a few of our residents decided to order banana splits this time).

Here are a few random photos of our residents!

Dick receiving a lesson in glass blowing!


Making an Octopus during Sunday Arts & Crafts

Enjoying all the love…

From the Founder

August had many passages.

First, I would like to announce that Jamie Campbell, our operation's manager for one year, has left. She was very important to help us get our house in order after we made major management changes last year in August. We appreciate all the hard work and guidance Jamie provided.

In the meantime, I am happy to announce that Kelly Nickerson has joined our company again. Kelly started working for us as a bookkeeper in 2001, she also was one of our first live-in families. She worked her way into marketing and was instrumental in keeping Oatfield Estates filled for several years. Her true goal, though, was to become a nurse. After she was admitted to the OHSU nursing program, she left us to become a nurse, she also worked for 5 years at Kaiser as a hospice nurse. Through a string of luck, Kelly has come back home to us. With all her past and new knowledge, we are excited to have her as our Director of Care Operations.

Moving forward, we are going once again back to the future. We are organizing towards the original 2 house model. Often times I visit Fanno Creek, which is a standalone 2 house model and I marvel at how well it runs, how calm it is. Over the years the prior management decided to be more centrally organized and run Oatfield Estates like a big campus. Even though we have 8 houses on campus, Bill and I still always wanted them to be organized with 2 sister houses working together.

We are in the process of finalizing our Organizational Chart, if you would like to see a copy, we will have some available for you in the office, just ask Mychal.

Ashland and Jefferson

This month we celebrated Marilyn’s Birthday in the Ashland house! All of the residents joined in to celebrate her special day. Marilyn so enjoyed everyone singing to her and she loved her presents; a new water bottle and a new nightgown. Marilyn’s favorite birthday treat, being a chocolate lover, was her S’mores chocolate pie. Marilyn said, “I could eat this entire pie.”

We had a great time!

Jefferson and Ashland had a great outing to an old fashioned Soda Fountain inside of an Antique store. Everyone loved the ice cream and so many of the residents enjoyed touring the store to see all the vintage items. Mary especially enjoyed looking through the store; she could relate to so many things that her parents had and that she had as a child. She had so much fun she asked if we could come back another time.

We would like to welcome our new resident in the Ashland house. Her name is Anne and she moved here from Vancouver, Washington. Anne was raised in Pennsylvania. Anne was married for 65 years and her and her husband loved to travel. Their favorite place was Victoria, Canada. Anne has 2 children, a boy and a girl. Anne has 1 grandchild and 1 great grandchild. Anne loves to do puzzles and loves the beach and enjoys sewing.  Anne loves to do activities, and she’s excited about meeting new people.

We wish her much happiness in her new home here at the Ashland house!


Hood and Adams

This last month was a scorcher but that didn't stop us from exploring the city and inviting a bit of culture and fun into our lives. At the start of the month, we ate dessert at a local favorite, Tebo's, and the following week drove down memory lane through the Columbia River gorge and viewed Multnomah Falls while sipping on hot cocoa, (it was strangely cold that day).

Numerous residents requested to go to the various flower farms in the area so to honor that request we went to Peninsula Park in Portland to visit the rose gardens. While it was beautiful and everyone enjoyed the scenery we quickly realized that it wasn't getting any cooler so we hopped back in the bus and went to get ice cream. What better way to beat the heat, right?

Later in the month we visited the Portland Art Museum, where we observed the latest gallery showing, Native Fashion Now. Everyone was enraptured by the color and beauty of the combination of traditional native dress and high fashion gowns and jewelry. At the end of our tour we stopped to look through the gift shop and then drank some water outside the museum cafe as we rested after all the walking we had done.

To continue our downtown exploration we went to the Lan Su Chinese Garden in Old Town Chinatown in downtown Portland. The garden looked as though we had stepped out of Portland and into China. We walked along the covered bridges, through the temples and viewed art done by local artists in classical Chinese style and contemporary art. The ambiance radiated calm. After touring the garden we ended our journey in the teahouse where we enjoyed some refreshing iced tea and cookies.

As we come into this next month we have an assortment of activities and outings planned, including going to the movies, The End of the Oregon Trail Museum, visiting a local soda parlor/antique shop and much more. Though fall is upon us we will continue to enjoy the outdoors as much as possible by visiting the campus chickens, picking the last of the garden produce and sitting by the koi pond, before heading inside.


Table Top Bowling

“Great job Richard! You got a spare!”

Looking down the makeshift bowling lane, Richard grinned and said, “See, I told you I could do it.  Let's see if you can beat that!”

Sitting opposite each other, residents are divided into teams. As I was assisting Susan with instructions, she throws the ball down the table receiving a Spare.

“Did I do well?” she asked.

“You got a spare,” I informed her.

“Is that good?” Susan asked.

I told her it was “Great!” A giggle escaped her lips and she gave me a hug as she went back to her seat.

Cheers, laughter, and clapping erupted through the breezeway.  The staff even got involved with assisting the residents that needed that little extra TLC.

Gloria is a pro at this event! “I used to be a bowler,” she informed us.  “This is nothing, the only thing different is that I am sitting down.”  Throwing the ball down the lane, a crash ignited the silence as the crowd watched with enthusiasm. I was delighted to hear and see roars of joyous laughter!


Chef's Corner

This recipe came into my repertoire after a resident's family asked me to make a graham cracker cake for their mom's birthday, since that was a family tradition. After doing a bit of searching I came across some recipes, which I tweaked, and the result is a light and delicious cake that my resident and her family loved.

Graham Cracker Cake (Adapted from AllRecipes.com)


  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 3/4 cup ground pecans
  • 1/2 cup sifted flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 egg yolks, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk, room temperature
  • 3 egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup white sugar


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and line with parchment two 9 inch round pans.
  • Combine the crumbs, pecans, flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • In a large bowl, cream the butter and the light brown sugar until fluffy. Slowly beat in the egg yolks, one at a time. Stir in the vanilla. Alternately add the milk and the crumb mixture while beating on low.
  • Beat the egg whites in a bowl until foamy. Add the sugar slowly, and beat to soft peaks. Fold into the crumb batter, and pour into the pans.
  • Bake for 25 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans on a rack about 10 minutes, then invert and cool completely.

(This cake goes well with many frosting combinations. A few suggestions are Vanilla Buttercream with a Salted Caramel Drizzle, or Mocha Frosting with Sliced Bananas in between the layers)


Michael Peter Larson – Tabor House

Michael Larson, aka “Mikey” (or Michael Peter Larson when he's in trouble), is one of the original residents of Tabor House at Oatfield Estates and has lived here since 2014.  He has a sly sense of humor, an infectious laugh and is a joy to be around.  The twinkle in Mike's eyes and his facial expressions make it easy to know what is on his mind, whether he's amused or feeling stubborn.

Mike was born in 1943 and is a lifelong resident of the Portland area; he most recently lived in Lake Oswego.  He was a salesman for an electronics company for many years and is a proud veteran of the United States Army where he was stationed in Germany. His experience overseas spawned a love of travel, especially to the tropics and Asia.  His favorite destinations are Hawaii and China, and he still has a sense of wanderlust, loving to go on drives in the surrounding countryside.

Mike's family means everything to him and he is a very proud father and grandfather.  His face beams when he speaks of his daughter, Andrea, and her husband and grandchildren who live in Oklahoma. Mike is always happy to share a book of paintings by his son-in-law, Desmond, a successful artist since he retired from the NBA, a former Seattle Sonic and Slam-Dunk Champion.

Mike's friends are important to him as well, especially David, a former business colleague, who visits regularly and always brings delicious treats for Mike and his Tabor House family.  Mike has made many new friends on campus and is always game to partake in activities.  He never misses the annual visit from the Japanese nurses who do calligraphy for our residents.

Mike loves sports, especially soccer, basketball and football, and always roots for Oregon State.  Mike also loves movies; his favorite actor is Liam Neeson, especially in the “Taken” series.  But Mike is a softy and loves the romantic comedies best, especially “Leap Year,” his favorite movie.  Is it the happy ending, the Irish setting, or the female lead, Amy Adams? Probably all of the above, considering that Mike is such a romantic.  He wears his heart on his sleeve, enjoys the shenanigans of Tabor House and is loved by all.

                                                                                 – Gretchen Cole

Helens and Rainier

During the month of August, our Residents experienced the joy of painting and and other fun activities in an open art studio.

Then, we took a trip to the movies! We saw Kubo and the Two Strings, a story about a ragtag team of misfits fighting to save a village with unexpected powers. It is a stop-motion animated film, with some Japanese animation influences, each micro-expression produced by a single snapshot of a puppet's face. Each movement is adjusted by a tiny little amount, and then when you play all the pictures together in quick succession, you have an animated film! Wow!

We had tons of fun doing some dance fitness, and got to visit with one of the staff members dogs. We love it when we get visits from our fluffy friends!

We celebrated the life of Lucille Phelps during the celebrations, and some of the Residents participated and lead the ceremony in a few songs.

For the month of September, we can look forward to going to the bowling alley, doing a little shopping at the Sellwood market, and visiting The End of the Oregon Trail museum. We are all looking forward to fall colors this month and hope you can join us for some of our outings.


Welcome Home, Kelly Nickerson

There's nothing more exciting than welcoming one of our employees back to Elite Care

Not just any employee, one who helped build not only the foundation, but helped Bill & I create our unique philosophy.  She understood how to cultivate an environment in which our elders could thrive and experience independence for as long as possible.  Without further ado, we'd like to welcome Kelly Nickerson back to Oatfield.  I love hearing Kelly tell her story.  Not only was she our top sales and marketing representative, Kelly lived our mission, vision, and values and through this new way of living she became the poster child of Oatfield Estates.  Kelly shared our vision and helped us create simple, consistent, routines; otherwise known as SCR.  She understood BIP and if you ask her today she'll share with you, it is the philosophy she raised her kids with.

Kelly started as a temporary employee working as an accountant. Soon thereafter, she and her baby moved into the Rainier House and assumed the role of a “live in”.  She shared her off hours with the residents; mealtimes, evening walks, movie nights etc.  She spent her weekends playing with the residents and building a sense of community for all of those around her.  Oatfield became her village, fostering the model of extended family at its finest.  One particular weekend a couple stopped by to tour and she was playing outside with her little one.  She informed the couple, marketing wasn't available but she was happy to share where she lived.  Kelly plopped the baby in the stroller and off the two went…. to share their very own 6 acre back yard.  Kelly will tell you herself, living here reminded her of the movie, Cocoon.  However, instead of a cocoon, it was the moon the residents were drawn to; people were moonlight dancing, falling in love, laughing and having fun.

That weekend Kelly became our star marketing representative.  It wasn't from a degree in marketing rather her love and strong sense of belonging which made all the difference in the world.  Change is inevitable and nothing lasts forever; in 2008, Kelly was accepted into OHSU's school of Nursing Baccalaureate Program and off she went to fulfill her dreams.  Sadly, we watched her leave the nest with high hopes, someday she would return.  Well, timing is everything, Kelly returned right when we needed her most!  She now has her BSN in nursing coupled with years of Hospice experience not to mention her life experience; she has a wealth of knowledge to share with all of us.  If you have the chance, please welcome Kelly back to Elite Care: home is where her heart is!

Power of Touch

What’s the key to their success? “Ikigai certainly helps,” Willcox offers. The word translates roughly to “that which makes one’s life worth living.” Older Okinawans, he says, possess a strong sense of purpose that may act as a buffer against stress and diseases such as hypertension. Many also belong to a Okinawan-style moai, a mutual support network that provides financial, emotional, and social help throughout life.

How the power of touch reduces pain and even fights disease

By Roger Dobson
Tuesday, 10 October 2006

When Jim Coan scanned the brains of married women in pain, he spotted changes that may help to shed light on an age-old mystery. As soon as the women touched the hands of their husbands, there was an instant drop in activity in the areas of the brains involved in fear, danger, and threat. The women, who had been exposed to experimental pain while they were scanned, were calmer and less stressed, and a similar, but smaller, effect was triggered by the touch of strangers.

“It’s the first study of the brain’s reactions to human touch in a threatening situation, and the first to measure how the brain is involved in the health-enhancing properties of close social relationships,” said Dr Coan, a neuroscientist at Virginia University.

Touch, a key component of traditional healing, is being increasingly studied in mainstream medicine, with some trials showing symptom benefits in a number of areas, from asthma and high blood pressure to migraine and childhood diabetes. Other research findings hint that not only does touch lower stress levels, but that it can boost the immune system and halt or slow the progress of disease.

The Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine says it has carried out more than 100 studies into touch and found evidence of significant effects, including faster growth in premature babies, reduced pain, decreased autoimmune disease symptoms, lowered glucose levels in children with diabetes, and improved immune systems in people with cancer.

At the Institute for Postgraduate Dental Education in Sweden, a small trial involving 10 patients with fibromyalgia syndrome found that eight benefited from touch therapy. “The results of the pilot study are so encouraging that they warrant an extended study,'” said the researchers.

Cincinnati Children’s Hospital is one of a number of leading health centres in the US that now uses healing touch therapy. “Research has demonstrated that patients who receive healing touch experience accelerated wound healing and relaxation, pain relief and general comfort,” said a spokesman.

According to a Stanford University report, several studies are showing significant benefits in wound healing, pain and anxiety. It says touch therapy may also have positive effects on fracture healing and arthritis. But some studies have failed to find an effect for touch, while others have had mixed results. One review of 11 separate studies found that seven showed a beneficial effect, three showed no effect, and one had a negative effect. Two out of four studies found a significant effect, but the others showed that those who did not get the touch therapy progressed better.

Some believe the power of touch is all down to the placebo effect. “If you touch your partner they feel relaxed, but if someone else touches they may not feel as relaxed,” said Professor Edzard Ernst, a professor of complementary medicine at the University of Exeter. “That is very much mind over matter. It has nothing to with the sensations of being touched, it is the expectation and the context of the intervention, rather than the specific effect of that intervention.”

While touch is used extensively for stress and anxiety and in palliative care, research is now increasingly focussing on whether it can impede the progress of a number of diseases, including depression and cancer.

At the Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio, a pilot study has begun involving 120 men with localised prostate cancer, to see whether hand-healing through the complementary therapy reiki affects levels of anxiety and progression of the disease. One of the hopes is that the advance of the disease can be halted or slowed.

And at the University of Iowa, a study is looking at the effects of healing touch on 64 women with advanced cervical cancer. Researchers say the aim is to see whether touch can boost the immune system and improve the body’s natural defences against the disease.

While research such as this may suggest beneficial effects, the mechanisms that could be involved are far from clear. One of the most common findings from research, including a study at the Institute of Neurological Sciences in Glasgow, is that touch lowers heart rate and blood pressure. But how? Work at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, may provide an answer. It has shown that touch and massage can cut levels of stress hormones, which have been implicated in increasing the risk of a number of diseases. Touch many also increase levels of melatonin and of the feel-good hormone, serotonin.

Researchers at Ohio State University have found that psychological stress can increase the blood levels of hormones that then interfere with the delivery of cytokines, key immune system elements, to the site of an injury. The result, they say, is a slowing down of the wound healing process.

They also found that wounds took a day longer to heal when the patient had been involved in an argument with a loved one, and that in married couples who did not get on, wound healing took two days longer. “Wounds in the couples who were hostile healed at only 60 per cent of the rate of couples with low levels of hostility,” said Dr Janice Kiecolt-Glaser.

That finding, plus those of Dr Coan, may explain why the touch of a loved one can be therapeutic. But they do not explain why the touch of practitioners and strangers can have a similar effect. At DePauw University in Indiana, Dr Matthew Hertenstein may have found an answer. He has discovered that touch communicates emotions. When people were touched by a stranger they could not see, who had been instructed to try to communicate a particular emotion, they were able to tell the emotional state of the other person with great accuracy.

The findings show that people can communicate several distinct emotions through touch alone, including anger, fear, disgust, love, gratitude, and sympathy. Accuracy rates ranged from 48 per cent to 83 per cent, comparable with those found in studies of emotions shown in faces and voices. “The evidence indicates that humans can communicate several distinct emotions through touch,” said Dr Hertenstein. “Our study is the first to provide rigorous evidence showing that humans can reliably signal love, gratitude and sympathy with touch. These findings raise the interesting possibility that touch may convey more positive emotions than the face.”

What it suggests, too, is that touch is a much more sophisticated tool that previously thought. It could also explain why different trials on the therapeutic effects of touch can get differing results. It may be that touch works, but that it needs the right person, in the right mood, doing the touching.

How hugs can heal

* Hugging your partner could lower his or her blood pressure.

* Researchers have found that in younger women, the more hugs they get, the lower their blood pressure.

* Researchers at the University of North Carolina who investigated 69 pre-menopausal women showed that those who had the most hugs had a reduced heart rate.

* Exactly what could be responsible is not clear, but the psychiatrists who carried out the work also found that blood levels of the hormone oxytocin were much higher in the women who were hugged the most.

* Other research finds that oxytocin is released during social contact and that it is associated with social bonding, while a study at Ohio State University shows that when it is put into wounds in animals, the injuries heal much more quickly.

* Work at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences suggests that oxytocin can induce anti-stress-like effects, including reduction in blood pressure and levels of the stress hormone cortisol: “It increases pain thresholds and stimulates various types of positive social interaction, and it promotes growth and healing. Oxytocin can be released by various types of non-noxious sensory stimulation, for example by touch and warmth,” they say.

, , , ,

Elite News – July-August 2016

Hood and Adams  
Adams and Hood house started this month with the amazing Fourth of July bash. There was face painting, clowns, family, friends and great food. Our Chefs did an outstanding job and everyone had an amazing time! 

We have started an “Art Studio” activity on Thursday mornings and the painting projects have been the Resident's favorite topic of conversation as of late. We have also started a group called “Armchair Travels” learning about new places and cultures from the comfort of our living spaces. We pick a theme and/or country to start with and have a related ethnic snack of some kind.

We ended the month with a wonderful beach trip and picnic. The weather cooperated nicely and it was a clear and warm day. Perfect time to see the Oregon coast! 

Ashland and Jefferson
For this issue we are pleased to present the story of Resident Murial Jager! 
Muriel has lived at Oatfield Estates since October 2012. Muriel was born in New York city and was a homemaker. Her hobby was Creative Embroidery. Muriel has traveled to Hawaii, Alaska, The Holy Land, and Suez Canal.
Muriel has 3 daughters and one son. She has 110 grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren, with a twelfth great-grandchild on the way. We're grateful to Murel for sharing her life with us. 

We had an exciting outing in late July. We went to the home of Jamie Campbell (Operations Manager for Elite Care) to see where she raises bison (sometimes known as buffalo). We got to meet a “Mama” bison and a new-born baby bison, also called a calf. 

It brought so much happiness to Resident Rosie Rabinonitz, Ashland House. It brought back wonderful memories of her childhood days going to her family’s farm in South Dakota. She shared some of her memories with us, and on the way home to Oatfield Estates she told us how much fun she had and that she’d like to go again.

Foot Care Spa

“Listen to my feet and I will tell you the story of my life.” 
– John Bubbles, Father of Rhythm Tap
Please join us for the Grand Opening of Oatfield Estates, Foot Care Spa.  The official Grand Opening / Ribbon Cutting Event will be held on September 1st, Thursday, from 3:00 – 4:00 pm!  Heidi Corbett is a registered nurse who specializes in caring for feet! She started her nursing career in the hospital ER department and medical surgery unit. According to Heidi, it did not take long to realize her passion was in long term care. During the past twenty-five years Heidi has been in the long term care arena in some form or another; Director of Making Life Easier Home Care agency, Nursing Assistant Instructor, and Regional Director of Education with Extendicare, just to name a few.

Heidi comes to our campus with 35 years of Nursing experience and is passionate about advocating for our elders to remain active and independent for as long as possible. She believes in our philosophy, the power of touch, and loves keeping feet happy! Heidi's passion extends well beyond nursing.  She brings with her the power of educating residents, families, and staff alike about proper preventative maintenance, offers suggestions for appropriate footwear, and provides tender touch massage to your loved one.  Heidi will make a great addition to our campus at Oatfield Estates.  Don't miss the campus event and celebrate the grand opening for our foot care spa on August 15th, located in the Helens house, suite B4 (basement).  The schedule is filling up quickly, so hurry and schedule your loved one's foot care appointment.  Email Heidi at corbetth6@gmail.com and msanders@elitecare.com.  Heidi will send a consent form and Mychal will add you to the schedule. 

Be good, keep your feet dry, your eyes open, your heart at peace.
~Author Unknown

A Place Called Home
Oatfield Estates is a place I called home for many years.  
Hello, my name is Jai Nickerson and I am 14 years old. In 2002, my mom began working in the Marketing Department for Oatfield Estates, and soon thereafter we moved onto campus and together we shared an apartment in the basement of the Helens House with the common area as my play-land. 
Through this experience we embraced extended family and created the role of a “Live-in”. Modeling the philosophy of extended family we were known as “the poster” children for Oatfield Estates.  
I truly thought since I romped around all over campus the entire 6 acres was “my backyard”.  I guess you could say, Oatfield Estates was my first stomping grounds.  It was a magical place where everything happened for the first time; I built my first snowman, slid down the hill (way before there was a gate), and met my first best friend.  
When my mom wasn't touring newcomers to the campus or studying for nursing school, we were with the Residents. My mom raised me with love and kindness, surrounded by old people (now I refer to them as sacred elders). There was no judgment, just unconditional love.  
I believe Oatfield taught me many wonderful things and through my experience I have grown into a kind person with a strong love for the elderly. My mom says, “Nothing ever stays the same and change is something to embrace.”  
I must admit, it was difficult to walk back on campus.  The flood of emotions was quite intense, yet comforting at the same time. The ponds don't seem as deep, nor do the trees seem as tall (well, maybe the one behind the office does). The faces have changed, but one thing remains constant, Oatfield is where my heart is!  
I love being back on campus, but mostly I love spending time with the Residents.  I have given myself a title: Resident Advocate.  My goal is by the end of the summer to meet every Resident, know their name, what they enjoy for fun, and most importantly, be an advocate for them.  
Please help preserve Oatfield, it's special to me and I'm certain to many others as well.
~ Jai Nickerson, Resident Advocate

The Chefs Corner

Tip from Chef Kate for getting boiled eggs to peel easy!
This is the best method I’ve found after trial and error, and lots of tip reading!
Start your egg in boiling water. Gently lower the eggs into the boiling water and cover until it returns to a boil. Eggs should be completely covered. 
Then, turn off the heat, cover the eggs for about 8-10 minutes.  Drain the hot water off the eggs and fill the pot with lukewarm to cool water. 
As soon as it cools a little, you can reach in and crack the shells against the pot. Allow the cracked eggs to submerge in water, and then immediately begin to remove their shells. They should slide off easily, nearly in one piece. I find this works regardless of how fresh my carton of eggs is.
About Chef Kate!
Chef Kate has a special place in Elite Care's heart: She has been employed with this community longer than any other team member! She has been with us since 2003 as the Chef in Adams House. 
Kate is our go-to person for all things kitchen. When you walk into her kitchen at Adams, you can really feel the environment that we envision for every house. Chefs are a very important component of the house!
Everyone loves Kate, not just for the delicious food she prepares, but also for the way she gets to know all the Residents and makes sure she understands their food likes and dislikes.  Chef Kate has a lot to do with the fact that Adams House rarely has any available suits. 
Thank-you Kate, for your years of dedicated service to our Residents and the wonderful example you set!

From the Founder
One of the challenges when you deal with frail elders' care and medical needs is communication. In an effort to make this easier for all concerned and for our Team Members to be more responsive, we have established office hours for the Community Manager and the Nurse.
We want to apply simplicity, consistency, and routine to our communications as well. Often the amount of emails and phone calls gets overwhelming and sometimes our response hasn't been as fast as you might want. In order to help the situation, here is what we have asked our Community Manager and our Nurses to do:
Community Managers and Nurses will spend one hour in the morning, from 9 to 10 am, and one hour in the afternoon, from 3 to 4pm, in their office. During that time they will respond to emails and phone calls.
If you have any non-urgent communications, please send emails to both CM and Nurse. With this new routine of time spent in the office solely for communication, it should be possible for them to be more responsive.
If you have any urgent communications, it is best to text rather than make a phone call. I would like your feedback as to how this is working. Please e-mail me with observations and concerns:lundberg@elitecare.com

Resident Spotlight: 

Vera Diltz
When combing through all of the memorable moments, events, and fun activities this month I couldn't help but think of our dearly beloved Vera. All of my special, funny, and at times sad moments are all wrapped up and centered on her. Vera is a young and beautiful 94 year old woman who never misses a beat! Every day she is one of the first ladies up, dressed with her makeup applied and outfit properly accessorized. After breakfast you can count on Vera to read out loud to all of the Residents and staff the latest headlines, sports coverage and up-to-date weather forecast for the day.  The staff will always attempt to direct her attention to the positive and upbeat stories yet she cannot be diverted! She faithfully flips to that front page, reading aloud the headlines.
Besides the daily news report, Vera has made it her number one priority to ensure that every Resident is taken care for; that they have a place to stay, and have had a good meal to eat. Every day she will ask the staff; “Where is my young lady friend?” (Another Resident), followed by, “Doesn't she get anything to eat? I don't think she has any money to pay for it…I think I might have some birthday money left over…” 
Of course we always reassure that everyone is cared for, and will not take anyone's word for it! She has to see it with her VERY OWN eyes! Vera's daily concern assures me of that she IS and ALWAYS will be a woman of generosity, love, compassion, and servanthood.

Sylvan Park Decked Out in Patriotism
Fourth of July proved to be another successful event at Sylvan Park. Residents, families, team members and visitors from the outside all got together to show their patriotic spirit. Faces were painted, red, white, and blue attire was worn, and the entire Sylvan Park Campus both inside and out had decorations galore! Everyone did an outstanding job showing their patriotism during our annual Fourth of July Barbeque.  
Sticking with tradition, the chefs outdid themselves by preparing a delicious barbeque feast that had all the traditional favorites; including watermelon, potato salad and even homemade fresh squeezed lemonade which Chef Perry took the time to make. It warmed everyone's hearts to the see the children of our Residents, families, and team members come together and enjoy the activities that were put together by the wonderful activities team at Sylvan Park. 
As the day came to an end there were smiles all around as loved ones hugged goodbye. It was no longer about “employees serving residents” it was about family enjoying family. How blessed are all of us to be a part of such a wonderful community?  It is events like this that truly remind us all of what family means. Here at Sylvan Park we are all family; and what better way to celebrate our nation's independence than by coming together as one? 
We are looking forward to the rest of the adventures that summer will bring. 

Elite Care PREP Panel Series Launches July 29th

Help is Needed

An estimated 5.3 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease in 2015, including approximately 200,000 individuals younger than age 65 who have early-onset Alzheimer’s. This mean millions more Americans are caring for family members with dementia and Alzheimer’s. As the number of afflicted Americans increases, the need for local community resources – including panels with local experts, healthcare related resources, and materials addressing the unique challenges caregivers face – will also grow. In an attempt to fill this need, Elite Care is launching its first Professional Resources for Elder Planning (PREP) panel.

When: Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 from 5:30 – 6:30pm

Where: Elite Care at Oatfield Estates, Cascade House

Resource Gathering

Learn from a team of local experts about resources and solutions regarding care for your elderly loved one or for yourself. The Elite Care PREP Panels offer an interactive, informal atmosphere where there’s no such thing as a dumb question.

  • 2015 program topics will include: estate planning, financial planning for the golden years, and preparing for downsizing
  • The Wednesday, July 29 program will focus on: Communicating to loved ones at the time of transition. The presentation starts at 5:30 p.m.
  • The format of the program includes: A 15-minute keynote speaker, followed by a 45-minute panel discussion with a Q&A

A Team of Experts

MARIA CURA (Keynote Speaker), a Long Term Care professional, has been serving Clark County seniors since 2009. Her expertise includes assisted living, memory care, home care and home health. Ms. Cura is an advocate for quality healthcare and life enrichment in older adults. Maria is a Parkinson's Support Group Facilitator, and a member of the Sole Support Walk for Parkinson's Committee through Parkinson's Resources of Oregon.

THERESA GIDDINGS, founder of Soft Landings, Solutions for Seniors, has over 25 years of experience in accounting and financial planning. After helping many people achieve their retirement goals, she saw a need to help them with their next transition of downsizing and moving. She is currently a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a Certified Financial Planner (CFP).

STEVEN ESTES is a financial advisor with Waddell & Reed based in Lake Oswego. With nearly a decade of experience in the industry, Steven works closely with his clients in planning for major goals such as retirement, tax savings, and wealth transfer. Steven is committed to meeting people from all walks of life to help them navigate the ever-changing financial markets.

JOHN BOYLSTON is a Portland native who believes in building up, strengthening, preserving, and protecting families. As an estate planning and elder law attorney, John is particularly passionate about making sure that every family has the Will, Trust, Incapacity and/or Tax Plan, that best fits their family.

RSVP Today

Phone: 971.276.1893 or email: jjarman@

Elite Care & SOLVE Partner for Success

Park Clean Up Event is a Wrap

Thank you to everyone who came out to Elite Care and SOLVE Oregon’s first collaborative clean up event at Stringfield Park on June 25th. In total, 76 members of the Elite Care community (41 Residents, 24 Team Member, and 11 children) gathered on a beautiful summer morning and together collected over 400 pounds of garbage. Your hard work made a tremendous difference in the appearance of a community resource and made wonderful memories for everyone involved. Thank you again!

KOIN TV Coverage:

Julianne Moore Won Best Actress for Still Alice

Important Exposure for the Fight Against Alzheimer’s

If you watched last week’s Oscar telecast, you saw Julianne Moore win the award for Best Actress for her portrayal of a woman struggling with early onset Alzheimer’s Disease in the film Still Alice. During her acceptance speech, Moore spoke powerfully about the need for increased attention for the fight against the disease. If you missed the telecast, watch her speech below (comments begin at 1:23).


A Growing Threat

The need for a cure and effective treatments for Alzheimer’s disease is growing as the number of affected Americans is expected to triple by 2050. To learn more about the disease and ways you can help with the fight, visit the Alzheimer’s Association website. To learn more about Elite Care’s unique approach to caring for dementia patients, visit our Amenities that Matter page.

Thank you for your performance, Julianne, and for your compassion.