September Wellness Star Awarded to Faithful Exerciser

. Posted in FPH, Journey to Healthy Aging Blog, News

Florida Presbyterian Homes has named resident Gerry H. as the Wellness Star award winner for September 2020. This month’s wellness star focuses on the physical dimension of wellness, which can be defined as lifestyle choices designed to maintain or improve health and functional ability.

Wellness-Star-Award-Winner-for-SeptemberWhen you think about Gerry, you think about her being faithful in two ways —

  1. committed to her faith, and
  2. faithful to exercise as a means to improve her quality of life.

Gerry has been very faithful about exercise since graduating from her rehabilitation program with Lisa, her FPH physical therapist. “It was a smooth transition from rehab to the wellness program because I was already familiar with the machines,” said Gerry. “I go to the McArthur [Exercise] Center every day except Sunday to do the strength machines or to ride the NuStep.”

After finishing rehab, Gerry said she needed to be persistent and keep doing the exercises even when she didn’t feel like it. “A person doesn’t have to get weaker just because they’re getting older,” said Gerry. “The machines help to develop muscles and make you stronger, even with your daily activities. I’m able to put on a fitted bed sheet, to move more confidently around the house, and I can get up and out of a chair without help.”

Gerry says that she has had some tough times in her life, but her friend told her: God will give you whatever you need to get through each day. This faith-filled quote keeps her going and helps her stay faithful to her exercise program.

When asked what wellness mean to her, Gerry said, “Growth in spirituality and a dependence on God, thinking, eating, exercising, and living your best life.”

Well said, Gerry, well said.

Avid Runner Wins August Wellness Star Award

. Posted in FPH, Journey to Healthy Aging Blog, News

Florida Presbyterian Homes is pleased to recognize resident Joan B. as the Wellness Star Award winner for August 2020.

This month’s wellness star focused on the physical dimension of wellness, which can be defined as lifestyle choices that maintain or improve health and functional ability. And this month’s winner does just that — she embraces physical activity for a healthier lifestyle.

florida-presbyterian-homes-wellness-star-award-winner-august-2020Joan has been physically active throughout most of her life. She was a cheerleader and tennis player in high school and continued to be very active into adulthood. She enjoyed many activities with her husband such as sail boating, showing Quarter horses, running and cycling. Since she and her husband were able to retire early, it allowed them time to make several annual trips to Europe during the months of May and June, where they enjoyed cycling through different countries. “Those are good months in Europe because of the weather and not being crowded with too many tourists,” said Joan. All in all, they traveled through thirteen countries over the course of their cycling trips!

Another activity Joan enjoys is running. She has long been an avid runner, racing in events from a 5K to different marathons. Joan ran her first marathon in Italy at the age of 70. She also ran several half marathons at Walt Disney World and in Miami. She even won her age group at the Army ten miler!

Joan continues to stay active at FPH with group exercise classes and swimming. “Being active helps keep me independent and I feel better when I exercise,” said Joan. “It’s important for people to make the effort and find something they like to keep them active and not isolate themselves.”

When asked what wellness means to her, Joan said: “It is feeling good about myself, being around other people and having  confidence in myself.” Good advice from this month’s Wellness Star.

July Wellness Star Shines Bright With Commitment to Her Faith

. Posted in FPH, Journey to Healthy Aging Blog, News

Florida Presbyterian Homes has named resident Nancy T. as the Wellness Star award winner for July 2020. This month’s wellness star focuses on the spiritual dimension of wellness, which can be defined as living with meaning and purpose in life, either through group or individual faith-based activities.

July-Wellness-star-award-winner-at-florida-presbyterian-homesNancy’s life is a great example of the spiritual dimension of wellness. She volunteers at First Presbyterian Church in Lakeland, as well as here at FPH. Her spiritual journey as a Christian began when she was 11 years old, and strengthened as she matured and fully understood what it meant to have joy for the LORD. In fact, her favorite verse is Nehemiah 8:10, “the joy of the LORD is your strength.” Nancy strongly believes a person must make a point to recognize joy even when things around them aren’t joyful.

While Nancy misses living up North near her family, she believes God has a plan for her to be here in Florida. At her church, she volunteers with the older adult ministry, many times serving lunch, presenting devotions or leading music. She’s not only busy at her own church but also as a member of the FPH Spiritual Life committee. Nancy says one of the main goals of the Spiritual Life committee is to support the chaplain and provide feedback on any issues that are presented. The committee also purchases the Daily Bread devotionals for FPH and writes the Advent and Christmas devotionals for the campus.

When asked what wellness means to her, Nancy said, “It’s a combination of body, mind and spirit. Doing the best I can for my body by eating well and exercising. Spiritually, it means spending time with the Lord and helping others.”

Congratulations, Nancy, for winning the July Wellness Star award. We’re happy God led you to Florida — especially here to Florida Presbyterian Homes, where you’re a kind and gentle servant for the Lord.

An Important Message from our CEO/Executive Director

. Posted in FPH, Industry News, Journey to Healthy Aging Blog, News

 – By Joe Xanthopoulos, Chief Executive Officer/Executive Director

The well-being of the residents living and staff working at Florida Presbyterian Homes are our greatest priority. COVID-19 is proving to be the most challenging immediate threat to our residents and staff. Face coverings/masks have been determined by the CDC, NIAID, Drs. Fauci, Redfield, Hahn and Admiral Dr. Giroir, and many other reputable and qualified health experts, to have a positive impact on mitigating risk and exposure for contracting COVID-19.

The attached letter which has been sent to the Lakeland Commissioners via the lakelandgov.net website and in hard copy print, was co-drafted by myself and Brian Robare at The Estates of Carpenters. We felt that this issue is of such importance to all people living in Lakeland and certainly especially for those we serve, we need to state our position strongly with the hope the Commission will reconsider the Executive Order presented by Mayor Mutz. We encourage everyone who receives the attached letter to contact our City Commissioners at lakelandgov.net.

(Click on each attachment to view Page 1 and Page 2 of the full letter.) 

Food & Nutrition Classes Offered This Summer

. Posted in Events, News

Food-AND-Nutrition-Classes-Offered-All-Summer-Long-Online-And-FreeThanks to the University of Florida’s Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Program, everyone is eligible to participate in a series of food and nutrition classes being offered online.

These classes are free and open to the public. They begin in June and run through the middle of August 2020.

FPH residents, staff and family members are encouraged to participate, however, you must sign up by clicking through to the registration links found here.

The UF/IFAS Extension Polk County Family & Consumer Sciences division is dedicated to providing science-based information to empower individuals and families to make changes to improve their health and quality of life.

If you have questions, please contact Andrea Nikolai, UF/IFAS Extension Polk County, Family and Consumer Science Agent at andreanikolai@ufl.edu or 863-519-1041.

Life-Long Educator Recognized with June Wellness Star Award

. Posted in FPH, Journey to Healthy Aging Blog, News

Florida Presbyterian Homes is proud to award resident Gene Scruggs with the Wellness Star for June 2020. This month’s wellness star focuses on the intellectual dimension of wellness, which can be defined as engaging in creative pursuits and intellectually stimulating activities.

Dr-Gene-Scruggs-Wins-Wellness-AwardDr. Scruggs has made wonderful contributions as an educator, author and coordinator of the FPH Academy. In fact, several residents are currently reading one of his books — The View from Brindley Mountain: A Memoir of the Rural South, which is available in bookstores and online. His next book, The Widening View, should be published and available by late summer or early fall of 2020.

Dr. Scruggs received his Bachelor’s degree in comparative literature, as well as his Masters and Doctorate in linguistics and French Studies from University of Kentucky. He taught at four universities throughout his career, but spent most of his profession working at the University of South Florida in Tampa. Dr. Scruggs finished the last 10 years at USF as Director of International Studies and Exchange.

His gifts and talents from his professional life have served him well with his volunteer teaching opportunities right here at FPH. (We’re lucky to have him!) Dr. Scruggs started helping his wife with her Bible studies in early church history and new testament, which segued into a Bible discussion class that draws around 20-25 residents each time they meet. He currently is leading a creative writing class and oversees the Academy, often as a guest presenter. According to Dr. Scruggs, his favorite volunteer activity has been the time spent in the assisted living facility while leading “Tuesday Morning Dialogue.”

When asked what wellness mean to him, Dr. Scruggs said, “I feel well when my brain is working. If I can get up, read a book or do a crossword puzzle, then I’m doing ok.”

We couldn’t agree more. Congratulations to Dr. Scruggs for his most recent award.

Community Update: 5-22-2020

. Posted in FPH, News

For 65 years, Florida Presbyterian Homes (FPH) has put the well-being of our residents first, with the mission of: Providing compassionate personalized continuing care and service of the highest quality consistent with our Christian Heritage. This commitment is now at the forefront as we address the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic. As of today, FPH has not had a resident or staff member with a confirmed COVID-19 test.

One of the most heartbreaking challenges communities here and across the country are facing will be shared from the perspective of a couple who live at FPH in an upcoming story in The Ledger. One spouse lives in Independent Living and the other spouse lives in our Skilled Long-Term Care facility, Porter McGrath. The Ledger article will describe the challenges of being apart from loved ones due to COVID-19.

“We understand the past several months has been very difficult for our residents, their families, and our staff as we have all been dealing with the most serious global health crisis in generations. In order to protect the most vulnerable population, the State of Florida and federal government have put into place emergency measures strictly limiting the access to assisted living and skilled nursing facilities,” said Joe Xanthopoulos, CEO and Executive Director of Florida Presbyterian Homes. “We are extremely grateful to all our residents, staff, and family of our residents who have put the well-being of our residents and our staff first, and who have supported the protocols we have put into place as needed and required. We ask them to continue supporting these protocols.”

Xanthopoulos went on to say, “Every day, we are tracking information and guidelines provided by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the Florida Department of Health, and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and communicating with our state and national associations, colleague providers, and area health systems. We are committed to implementing ‘best practice’ protocols and procedures to minimize the risk here to our residents and staff. We consider all dimensions of wellness including emotional well-being in everything we do here. Our life enrichment and clinical care teams have provided video chats and phone calls to connect Assisted Living and Porter McGrath residents with their loved ones. We have also added more small group and individual activity programming during this time.”

Xanthopoulos said these are difficult times for not only our community, but for the entire country. “We fully understand that this situation is very stressful for our residents and their families. We remain committed to minimizing the risk of COVID-19 to all of our residents and staff during this pandemic, and we address challenges like this in an effective and compassionate manner consistent with our Christian heritage,” Xanthopoulos said in closing.

Florida Presbyterian Homes (FPH) was established in 1955 and is an accredited and award- winning continuing care retirement community designed to accommodate the changing needs of residents as they age. A wide variety of homes, duplexes and apartments for independent seniors are available, as well as an on-site rehab unit, wellness center, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities. The campus is located on 48-acres along the shores of Lake Hunter in the historic Dixieland neighborhood of Lakeland.

For more information about Florida Presbyterian Homes, visit the website (www.FPHI.org) or call 863- 688-5521. Members of the news media may contact Joe Xanthopoulos directly at 863-577-6002.

May Wellness Award Winner Finds Joy Through Art

. Posted in FPH, Journey to Healthy Aging Blog, News

Florida Presbyterian Homes is pleased to recognize resident Linda P. as the Wellness Star for May 2020.

Wellness-Star-Award-winner-finds-joy-through-artThis month’s wellness star award focused on the intellectual dimension of wellness, which can be defined as engaging in creative pursuits and intellectually stimulating activities.

Beginning as early as the 8th grade, Linda’s teacher recognized her natural talent for art. Linda attended the University of Cincinnati’s fine arts college majoring in costume design which was a co-op program. A co-op program combines both classroom and real-work experiences together.

Linda’s loves painting flowers with lighter shades and vivid colors. “I’m happiest when I am painting,” said Linda. “I want to bring people joy when they look at my work.”

A truly gifted artist, Linda has always had a passion for art and enjoys working with her fingers. She enjoys sewing and made her children’s clothes while they were growing up. As an adult, Linda was quick to find various opportunities to join craft and painting groups. Her favorite medium is water-color, but she has experience with acrylics, as well. Over the years, Linda has attended a variety of art workshops and courses — sometimes through the Lakeland Art guild, at an artist’s home or on a nearby college campus.

When asked what wellness means to her, Linda said, “Eating healthy, getting exercise, having a spiritual life, and keeping the right mental attitude.”

Congratulations Linda, our Wellness Star Award Winner!

Former Nurse Awarded April Wellness Star

. Posted in FPH, Journey to Healthy Aging Blog, News

Florida Presbyterian Homes has named resident Ellie K. as the Wellness Star award winner for April 2020. This month’s wellness star focused on the vocational dimension of wellness. That includes work that utilizes a person’s skills, while also providing personal satisfaction through volunteerism. Ellie’s love of the nursing profession and her interest in helping others made her a perfect choice for this month’s award.

Resident-recognized-as-April-Wellness-Star-Award-WinnerEllie had a 40+ year career in the nursing profession, which included degrees from the University of Rochester and Florida Southern College. She began working as a nurse in the University Hospital before moving to Florida, where she spent the remainder of her career at Winter Haven Hospital in surgical intensive care, IV therapy and as a nursing supervisor.

Ellie says she enjoyed nursing because it was challenging and she loved caring for people. Her talent from her professional life as a nurse has served her well with volunteer opportunities in the Porter McGrath Center here at FPH. She has been volunteering with a resident in the health center for the last two years. “It’s satisfying knowing I am helping other people — not only the resident, but also the caregiver who can get some time away,” said Ellie.

When asked what wellness means to her, Ellie said, “To feel the best I can and be able to do the things I like to do. Plus, I have to keep walking and doing my exercises.”

Well said, Ellie. Congratulations on your commitment to wellness!

Avoid Coronavirus Scams

. Posted in FPH, Industry News, News

Scammers are taking advantage of fears surrounding the Coronavirus.

What the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is Doing

The FTC and FDA have jointly issued warning letters to seven sellers of unapproved and misbranded products, claiming they can treat or prevent the Coronavirus. The companies’ products include teas, essential oils, and colloidal silver.

The FTC says the companies have no evidence to back up their claims — as required by law. The FDA says there are no approved vaccines, drugs or investigational products currently available to treat or prevent the virus.

Avoid Coronavirus Scams

Here are some tips to help you keep the scammers at bay:

  • Don’t click on links from sources you don’t know. They could download viruses onto your computer or device.
  • Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or experts saying they have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the Coronavirus, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • Ignore online offers for vaccinations. There currently are no vaccines, pills, potions, lotions, lozenges or other prescription or over-the-counter products available to treat or cure Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) — online or in stores.
  • Do your homework when it comes to donations, whether through charities or crowdfunding sites. Don’t let anyone rush you into making a donation. If someone wants donations in cash, by gift card, or by wiring money, don’t do it.

Link to ftc.gov/coronavirus for the FTC’s most up-to-date information about Coronavirus scams

© 2019 Florida Presbyterian Homes
16 Lake Hunter Drive - Lakeland, FL 33803
Phone: 863-688-5521 or Marketing: 863-577-6001