We Are All In This Together

March brought with it many challenges. We would like to thank everyone for helping with our restricted activities and all the precautions we are taking. But we are all staying positive and would like to use this platform for continuing our outreach and coordination around important information. We are also always here to help, so we will be sharing some ways to stay safe, given the new circumstances.

If you haven’t been informed of the current policy, we will be restricting all visitors to Arbor Springs. While it is necessary to adhere to all guidelines and restrictions, especially those outlined by Arbor Springs, there are a few ways that you can stay engaged and help out those feeling a little lonely under the circumstances.

We would also like to stress that the additional information and health tips we share are merely best practices taken from reliable sources. They should never be followed if they contradict medical professionals’ instructions, Arbor Springs employees, or put you in danger in any way. Be safe and stay healthy!!

“The First wealth is health.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Adopt A New Friend

We foster cats through the Hope Animal Rescue

Please visit the Hope Animal Rescue website for more info

Handwashing – How To Do It Right!

It is important to ensure you are washing your hands often and correctly. Below are some quick handwashing steps.

  • Wet – run clean water over your hands; water can be cold or hot to start. Turn off the water and apply soap.
  • Lather – create a strong lather by rubbing your hands together, creating a thick soap layer on your hands, the back of your hands, and under your nails.
  • Scrub – rub your hands together and scrub with the soap for 20 seconds. Sing “Happy Birthday” twice if you need to keep time.
  • Rinse – wash off the soap under clean hot running water.
  • Dry – use a clean towel or air dryer to dry your hands.

How we are passing our time!

Unfortunately, we’ve had to cancel most of our planned events and regular activities…but that doesn’t mean we’ve forgotten how to have fun! There are still many ways to stay engaged together. Here is a list of some things we are still doing to pass the time and stay active, but please check with staff members as activities may change.

Remember to Relax and De-stress with Us:

  • 1:1 Visits
  • Singing & Dancing
  • FaceTime Calls with Families
  • Restorative Therapy
  • Art
  • Reading
  • Music
  • Phone Calls
  • Reading & Writing Letters
  • Manicures, Makeovers, & Hairstyling
  • Residents Taking Care of the Babies in Evergreen

And as always, we are having great conversations together!

Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Doctor Visits are also still taking place. Please ask a staff member if you have any questions regarding this.

We would also like to say that while we miss everyone who can’t visit during our precautionary period…we are doing well and getting through this together!

Celebrate the Month With Us!

This month, there have been many events that have been postponed or canceled. Whether it is sporting events or national gatherings, we are all doing our part to adjust and help in this time of great concern. With that said…there is still much to celebrate!

April Fools Day – Apr. 1st
It’s a good month to remember to have some fun. While pranks are not encouraged given the seriousness of the situation in the coming weeks, let’s change it up a bit. Make sure to make someone laugh or just have some fun. It’s easy to give someone a call or send them a message to make them smile. Now it is more important than ever to reach out and share a smile…or be just a little foolish.

Easter – Apr. 12th
This holiday is a deeply religious one, but also a time of festivities – with eggs and bunnies…and even some candy. Whether it’s an Easter egg hunt, colorful parade or making fun festive crafts, Easter is a bright and vibrant celebration!

Earth Day – Apr. 22nd
This holiday celebrates the anniversary of the modern environmental movement which began in 1970. Today, take stock of how important the Earth and your environment is to your day-to-day life. Also, think about what more you can do to help take care of our beautiful home – the Earth. We can all pitch in a little more to preserve this wonderful place for the next generations.

Medical Laboratory Professionals Week – Apr. 19th – 25th
Another timely celebration. Testing is more important now than ever, but it is always a good idea to keep your medical tests at top of mind. Staying up to date with your tests and lab work is essential. Make sure to remember to get all the tests you need to stay healthy and be thankful for all the hard work to keep you well.

National Garden Month
Along with Earth Day, Gardening Month is a great excuse to get your green on! While you may be stuck inside, there are a ton of great ways to garden just in your apartment. Try a succulent garden, zen garden, or a more robust herb that only requires a little bit of water.

Stress Awareness Month
Managing your stress is always important, but especially for the current situation. Remember to practice mindfulness, get enough rest, drink and eat well, and keep up your exercise (even if its something simple). Be sure to talk to a staff member if you are feeling overwhelmed or are experiencing above-average levels of stress.

Stay Safe, Stay Healthy

We here at Arbor Springs take the current Coronavirus situation extremely seriously. It is very important to take precautions and follow the proper guidelines.

Keeping our community and its members safe with measures both in and around our community is a top priority for us. As you know, we are not currently allowing visitors, but please take note of these guidelines to keep our friends and families safe both outside our community and at Arbor Springs:

For Everyone:

  • Keep your distance from those you do not need to be close to (6 feet is recommended).
  • Cover your mouth with your elbow while sneezing or coughing.
  • Do not shake hands, hug, or have any other direct contact if not completely necessary.
  • Do not touch your face!
  • Wash your hands thoroughly when necessary (more instructions below).

For Those With Us at Arbor Springs:

  • Let a staff member know immediately if you have a dry cough, feel feverish, or are having trouble breathing.
  • We will be taking everyone’s vitals once per day to make sure all is well!
  • If you have any concerns about your physical or emotional wellbeing, do not hesitate to let us know. While COVID-19 is our main concern, we want to make sure we are keeping all health concerns in mind.

When To Wash Your Hands…

So we covered how to wash your hands above, but when do you need to do this? More importantly, what can you do when you can’t wash your hands, and what other precautions do you need to take? Being well informed and adhering to this advice is a great start to staying safe and healthy.

When you wash your hands:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before eating
  • Before and after administering medical attention
  • After going to the bathroom
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • After touching any animal or animal product
  • After handling pet food or pet treats
  • After touching trash or garbage

What to do if you can’t wash your hands:

  • First of all – wash your hands as soon as possible.
  • Use hand sanitizer – sanitizers won’t kill all germs, so wash your hands as soon as you can after.
  • Don’t touch your face until you can wash your hands.
  • Do not touch others until you can wash your hands.
The guidelines on this page and in this newsletter are in no way all-encompassing and should not be adhered to if medical professionals or staff members inform you otherwise. We are learning more about COVID-19 every day, so be sure to stay informed at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus

Arbor Care

While we are committed to supporting our community, we know the best thing for it at the moment is for everyone to be as safe and cautious as possible. Remember that there are still many ways to connect with those who wish to support and help each other. See below for more information about how we will be handling these meetings in the coming month. Thank you all for your patience and support during this challenging time.

Arbor Care will be canceled until further notice.

The Alzheimer’s Association Caregiver Support Group will not be meeting in person. Arrangements are being made to hold this meeting virtually. Once the details are confirmed, Sarah will reach out with how to sign in and join.


Keeping Your Loved One Company…

Out of an abundance of caution, in response to the COVID-19 virus, Arbor Springs is temporarily restricting all visitors. It is crucial that we take every precaution possible to prevent this virus from entering the facility. Restricting access to only those individuals who are critical to the operational or care needs of the facility is a step we feel is necessary to take.

Please call the facility directly at 515-223-1135 with questions or concerns. We look forward to notifying you when the restrictions are lifted.

We also want everyone to know that all of us here, both community and staff members, are doing fantastic! We are so fortunate to be spending this time with each other. While social isolation has been difficult for many people, we find that together we are just growing closer and simply thankful to have some company to pass the time.

For those not spending this time with us in person, there are a few ways that you can engage with your loved one, even at a distance. If you need help with any of these activities, just let a staff member know.

Back To Basics – a great way to stay connected is with things like phone calls and emails. If you are doing a phone call, try to keep a schedule. This gives everyone something to look forward to and helps with the feeling of loneliness when you are not visiting.

Video Calls – if your loved one is able and you have the resources, now is a great time to have them try video calls. There are so many easy to use services that only require a phone or computer with a camera. Talk to our staff if you would like to try to do something like this.

Send Them Something – think of something that they love or a way that they will know there are folks out there thinking of them. Things like sweets or photos!

What We’ve Been Up To!

These events and activities, including our Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe Interview below, took place before our COVID-19 precautions were enacted. We look forward to more fun activities like these soon!

A New Treat!

We had a great time with Jerilyn as she interviewed our activity assistant Renee and learned about her “Grandma Smith’s Peanut Butter Cookies” Recipe!

J: Is this a family recipe?
R: Yes, it is my Grandma Smith’s special Peanut Butter Cookie recipe. Grandma Smith was my mom’s mother.

J: Any memories associated with the cookies?
R: My cousins, aunts, and uncles would always gather at Grandma and Grandpa Smith’s house for the holidays. She always served her cookies on a pretty platter. You had to grab your share, as they were always gone in the blink of an eye.

J: Tell me about your Grandma.
R: My Grandma Smith was a kind, sweet, loving lady. She was as round as she was tall. I always remember her wearing an apron. She and Grandpa Smith owned a greenhouse in the small town of Bagley, Iowa. People came from far and wide to buy their flowers and plants. They always had gourds and squash to sell at their little stand in the front of their house. When I was about 8, Grandma would let me help at the stand. ☺

One of my favorite memories was when Grandma would give me her little coin purse (I still remember the smell of it) and would send me uptown to Vaux Grocery Store to buy bread … and a little treat for both Grandma and me!

Grandma Smith passed away while she was sitting in her favorite chair watching Lawrence Welk. She was in her late 80’s. To this day, I still watch the reruns of Lawrence Welk on Saturday night. It gives me the comfort of days gone by and the wonderful memories.

The Arbor Bulletin Board


We know this time is difficult. Please let us know if you are having a physical or emotional issue. There is nothing wrong with letting us know you are having a difficult time with the stress and isolation of the current situation.

We are all in this together…and we are here for you!

Please call the facility directly at 515-223-1135 with questions or concerns. We look forward to notifying you when the restrictions are lifted.


Happy Birthday! Let’s Celebrate Together!

  • Julie – Apr 1st

  • Willie R. – Apr 3rd

  • Jeannene C. – Apr 7th

  • Larry F. – Apr 10th

  • Jerilyn C. – Apr 12th

  • Jean J. – Apr 13th

  • Judy Z. – Apr 19th

  • Darlene L. – Apr 27th

With everything going on, we would like to take a moment to do one very important thing…

Take a Deep Breath

We are working hard every day to ensure your safety, and you can help too by taking a minute to relax and know you’re safe.

We are here for you!

The guidelines on this page and in this newsletter are in no way all-encompassing and should not be adhered to if medical professionals or staff members inform you otherwise. We are learning more about COVID-19 every day, so be sure to stay informed at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus