Garden Manor Blog

“Living the Aloha Spirit”

“Living the Aloha Spirit” is this year’s theme for National Nursing Home Week.  It will take place May 11-17.  But what exactly does “Living the Aloha Spirit” mean?  How can we at Garden Manor, nowhere near the beauty and magic of Hawaii, do this?

According to the work “Aloha” has many different meanings.  It sites the “most common uses are as a greeting, farewell or a salutation.”  The website also states “aloha” commonly means love or can be used to express “compassion, regret or sympathy.”  The University of Hawaii Community College (UHCC) website shares that “Aloha” may also refer to affection, mercy, pity, kindness or grace.  The site states “These sentiments make it a lovely common greeting and expression of farewell.”  So again the question is raised – What is the “Aloha Spirit” and how do we live it?

The University of Hawaii Community College website writes “Living Aloha is the coordination of mind and heart within each person.  It brings each person to the self.  Each person must think and express good feelings to others.”  It goes on to say that “Aloha” means a “mutual regard and affection and extends warmth in caring with no obligation in return.  [It] is the essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person . . .”  UHCC also shared the following:

            Akahai – kindness to be expressed with tenderness

            Lokahi – unity to be expressed with harmony

            Oluolu – agreeable to be expressed with pleasantness

            Haahaa – humility to be expressed with modesty

            Ahonui – patience to be expressed with perseverance

One can now understand a little better what “Living the Aloha Spirit” means.

The American Health Care Association notes on their website:

By living the Aloha Spirit, we show others love and respect and joyfully share life in order to create a better world . . .the goal in Long Term Care and Post Acute Skilled Nursing Care Centers is always Person-Centered Team Care in a harmonious, caring environment.  This is “Living the Aloha Spirit!

Garden Manor already lives the “Aloha Spirit” on a daily basis.  However, during National Nursing Home Week, the resident, their family and loved ones, along with the staff have some special events planned: 

Monday, May 12

The residents will present staff with lei.  According to the website “presenting a lei signifies admiration, respect and honor towards the individual.”  The residents will also be selling Hibiscus clips as a fund raiser.  Proceeds will be donated to a charity later in the week.

 Tuesday, May 13

Residents, their families and loves ones will be gathering in the Court Yard at Garden manor for food and fun.  The menu will include pulled port, an assortment of Hawaiian inspired salads, buttered red potatoes with parsley and green beans with almonds.  Drinks and desserts will also be served.

 Wednesday, May 14

A day to have fun with one another!  Staff and resident will participate in games together – including the Limbo.  How low can you go?!

 Thursday, May 15

The residents will be taking the proceeds from the Hibiscus Clip sale to the charity they have chosen.  Staff and residents will also enjoy an ice cream social.

 Friday, May 16

Staff will be treated to a special luncheon and presented with tokens of appreciation.


National Kidney Month

Did you know that diabetes is the leading cause of kidney disease?  According to the National Diabetes Fact Sheet in 2011 25.8 million children and adults in the United States have diabetes.3  Another staggering statistic shared on the American Diabetes Association’s website states that in 2010 1.9 million new cases of diabetes were diagnosed in individuals over the age of 20.3  The good news is that the better a person controls their diabetes the lower their chance of getting kidney disease is, as well as the individual may be able to prevent of delay complications associated with diabetes.1  

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) discusses certain myths about diabetes on their website.  Below is a quick quiz to test your knowledge of diabetes.  See how well you do.

Diabetes is not that serious of a disease. True          False
If you are overweight or obese, you will eventually develop type 2 diabetes. True          False
People with diabetes should eat special diabetic foods. True          False
If you have diabetes you should eat large amounts of starchy food, such as bread, potatoes and pasta. True          False
People with diabetes can’t eat sweets or chocolate. True          False
You can catch diabetes from someone else. True          False
People with diabetes are more likely to get colds and other illnesses. True          False
Fruit is a healthy food.  Therefore, it is ok to eat as much of it as you wish. True          False

Diabetes is not that serious of a disease.  False.  Diabetes cause “more deaths a year than breast cancer and AIDS combined.  Two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke.”2

If you are overweight or obese, you will eventually develop type 2 diabetes.  False.  According to the ADA website, being obese is a risk factor for developing the disease, however an individual’s family history, ethnicity and age can play a role.“Most overweight people never develop type 2 diabetes and many people with type 2 diabetes are at a normal weight or only moderately overweight.”

People with diabetes should eat special diabetic foods.  False.  A healthy diet for an individual with diabetes is about the same as a healthy diet for someone who is not diagnosed with disease.  A healthy diet should be low in fat, moderate in salt and sugar, contain whole grain foods, vegetables and fruits. The ADA states that “diabetic and “dietetic” foods generally offer no special benefit.”

If you have diabetes you should only eat large amounts of starchy food.  False.  “Starchy foods can be a part of a healthy meal plan, but portion size is key.”

People with diabetes can’t eat sweets or chocolate.  False.  The ADA’s website indicates that if sweets or chocolate are eaten as part of a healthy diet or combine with exercise then it is ok.  Again the key is portion size and moderation.

You can catch diabetes from someone else.  False.  The ADA states that it may not be known why certain individuals have diabetes, it is known that it is not contagious. 2    

People with diabetes are more likely to get colds and other illnesses.  False.  An individual with diabetes is no more likely to get a cold or other illness than someone who is not diagnosed. However, an illness can make diabetes more difficult to control an individual’s with diabetes are more likely than others to develop complications. 2    

Fruit is a healthy food.  Therefore, it is ok to eat as much of it as you wish.  False.  Fruit is healthy and contains carbohydrates and needs to be included in your diet. However, the ADA recommends talking to dietician about the “amount, frequency and types of fruits you should eat.” 2   

Diabetes is not something to take lightly.  According to a 2007 study, diabetes was noted as the cause of death or a contributing factor in the death of 231,404 individuals.Complications of diabetes can include:

  • Heart disease and stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • Blindness
  • Kidney disease
  • Neuropathy
  • Amputation

The American Diabetes Association website also shares the some individuals with type 2 diabetes have symptoms so mild they go unnoticed.  However, the following are common symptoms of an individual with diabetes:

  • Urinating often
  • Feeling very thirsty
  • Feeling very hungry – even though you are eating
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Blurry vision
  • Cuts or bruises that are slow to heal
  • Weight loss – even though eating more (type 1)
  • Tingling, pain or numbness in hands or feet (type 2) 4

Check out the ADA “Diabetes Risk Test” on their website –  If after taking the test and or the symptoms describe you contact you doctor to discuss.  It is better to know if you do have diabetes.  Knowledge is power and if diabetes is managed well, individuals may be able to prevent or delay the complications.

How does someone manage their diabetes or lower their risk of developing?  The American Diabetes Association recommends three areas that individuals may want to focus on:  weight, diet and physical activity.  While being overweight does not necessarily mean you have or will develop type 2 diabetes it can increase your risk of developing it.  Losing even a few pounds can make a difference.  Physical activity can also help keep your blood glucose levels in check.  “Eating well to maintain a healthy weight is one of the most important things you can do to lower our risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease.”  The ADA website provides many suggestions in the section “Healthy Eating.”  Check out their website for their entire list.  Below are just a few of their suggestions: 6   

  • Buy leaner meats (such as chicken, turkey and lean cuts of pork or beef) and lower fat dairy products.
  • Buy whole grain breads and cereals.
  • Remember that special “dietetic” or “diabetic” foods often cost extra money and ma not be much healthier than following the suggestions provided by the ADA.
  • Plan meals for the week.
  • Stock you pantry with healthy basics, including brown rice, whole grain pasta, crackers and cereals.
  • Never shop when you’re hungry and might be tempted by less healthy food.
  • Try starting meals with a salad or a broth or tomato based soup with lots of vegetables.
  • In restaurants ask if meats can be grilled rather than fired and request sauces and dressings on the side.

For additional information please check out the American Diabetes Association website at

  1. “It’s National Kidney Month.”  American Diabetes Association.
  2. “Diabetes Myths.”  American Diabetes Association.
  3. “Statistics About Diabetes.”  American Diabetes Association.
  4. “Symptoms.”  American Diabetes Association. 
  5. “Overweight.”  American Diabetes Association.
  6. “Healthy Eating.”  American Diabetes Association.
  7. “Physical Activity.”  American Diabetes Association.
















The New Year

The New Year is always an exciting time.  Not only is it a time to reflect on the year gone by buts it’s a time to look forward to what the New Year will be.  In the past we’ve highlighted certain events in the blog.  You’ve read about the crowing of the King and Queen of the Retirement Village at their annual Valentine’s Day Party.  I’ve blogged about our Thanksgiving Feast for residents and their loved ones in the Extended Care Center and Transitional Care Center.  But there is so much more that Garden Manor offers throughout the year.  Below are some of the events that our residents, families, loved ones and staff are looking forward to in 2014.  Now keep in mind this is not an exhaustive list.  There are activities and events scheduled for each and every day of the year.  For more information on the daily activities check out our Activities Department’s monthly calendars posted on our website. 

Garden Manor, however, is much more than events on a calendar.  And we are more than just a place where individuals come to live because they can no longer care for themselves in the community.  We are a place where individuals feel secure.  We are a place that residents love and call home.  But the question is how we can convey that to you, our readers?  Well, we’ve decided to do something new in 2014.  Over the course of this year we will be sharing the personal stories of some of our residents and what Garden Manor means to them.  We couldn’t think of a better way to convey to you what Garden Manor is all about! 

 2014 Upcoming Events


  • Valentine’s Day Party (ECC/RV)
  • Veteran’s Tribute (ECC)


  • Mardi Gras Festival (ECC/RV)
  • St. Patrick’s Day Party (ECC/RV)


  • Easter Egg Hunt (ECC/RV)
  • Easter Day Celebration (ECC)


  • Cinco de Mayo Party (ECC)
  • Mother’s Day Open House (ECC)
  • Mother’s Day Luncheon (RV)
  • National Nursing Home Week – Theme “Living the Aloha Spirit” (ECC)
  • Armed Forces Day (ECC)
  • Memorial Day Tribute (ECC) 


  • Father’s Day Get Together (ECC)
  • Father’s Day Luncheon (RV)
  • Celebrate Summer Cookout (ECC)


  • Independence Day Celebration (ECC/RV)
  • The Ohio Challenge
  • Butler County Fair


  • Dog Days of Summer Picnic (ECC)


  • National Assisting Living Week (RV)


  • Trick or Treat (ECC/RV)


  • Thanksgiving Feast (ECC)


  • Christmas Dinner (RV)
  • Christmas Open House (ECC)
  • Christmas Party (ECC)
  • New Year’s Eve Celebration (ECC)

ECC – Extended Care Center & Transitional Care Center

RV – Independent & Assisted Living


Middletown Terrace/
Retirement Community

Transitional Care Services/
Short-Term Stay

Extended Care/
Long-Term Stay