The holiday season is a time for spreading joy, and at Ridgmar Place, an independent senior living community in Fort Worth, Texas, Lynn Hamilton, the Life Enrichment Director, takes it upon herself to make the holidays as special as possible for the community’s residents. With a passion for caring for people, Lynn brings her creativity, enthusiasm, and love for the seniors to create memorable holiday experiences.
Lynn’s Journey: From Preschool Teacher to Senior Living Enthusiast
Before working in senior living, Lynn taught preschool for 22 years. Lynn shares, “I have such a heart for caring for people in general.” When she felt it was time to move on from her career as a preschool teacher, she thought she’d try working with people who are on the opposite side of the age spectrum.
Lynn says that she has found that children and seniors share a wonderful perspective on life. “They remind me daily not to sweat the small stuff and to live your life like you’re intended to live it. Don’t worry about what other people think. Do what makes you happy. That’s the key to life, really,” she says.
Ridgmar Place’s Winter Wonderland Decorations
Lynn’s role involves more than just organizing activities; it’s about creating a positive and fulfilling atmosphere for the residents.
The winter holidays are a particularly magical time at Ridgmar Place. Lynn and her activities partner, Selina, start decorating in the last week of November, turning the senior living community into a festive wonderland. From a menorah to Grinch-themed trees to a special tree that honors veterans, the staff’s creative input adds a unique touch to the decorations.
The Veterans’ Tree is notable, especially considering that many of the residents are veterans (their pictures while they were in the service are up on the wall next to the tree). It holds a special place in their hearts because there are boots donated from a local veterans’ nonprofit placed under the tree. Details like these tend to make the residents emotional, serving as a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made by those who have served their country.
Festive Calendar of Events: Holiday Celebrations
The holiday spirit extends beyond decorations with a calendar full of festive events. From Christmas lights tours to ugly Christmas sweater parties with boozy cherry bombs, Lynn ensures there’s always something fun happening. The Christmas party will feature a Frank Sinatra-like crooner and a delectable menu of prime rib and cheesecake prepared by the chef.
There’s also an annual door-decorating contest. Residents embrace the festive challenge, transforming their doors into creative expressions of holiday joy. One standout entry, crafted by a creative couple, extends beyond the door frame! Their heartwarming display features a makeshift brick fireplace adorned with logs and twinkling Christmas lights, creating the cozy illusion of a crackling fire.
A couple at Ridgmar Place went all out when decorating their door for the annual door-decorating contest!
Lynn’s ideas for activities and decorations often pop up unexpectedly, fueled by her incredible creativity and a touch of inspiration from Pinterest. Lynn also actively seeks resident input through monthly meetings, creating a collaborative atmosphere where everyone’s ideas for activities are valued. The residents are especially fond of giving back, with recent initiatives such as a Toys for Tots drive, reflecting Ridgmar Place’s commitment to community service.
Lynn’s Motivation: Resident Appreciation and Fulfillment
What motivates Lynn? The residents’ appreciation. “The residents constantly tell me that we do a good job and that they’re happy with the activities. That’s rewarding and fulfilling enough for me. This has been the most fulfilling career I have ever had. Even when it’s crazy with the holidays, I love these residents. They just make my heart happy,” Lynn concludes.
In Lynn, Ridgmar Place has found not just a Life Enrichment Director, but a passionate and caring individual dedicated to making the holiday season and every day special for the community’s residents.
Come Meet Lynn and Schedule a Tour!
At Ridgmar Place, we love celebrating our residents’ lives with fun and personalized activities each month. Contact us to learn more and schedule a tour with us!