Residents of St Mary’s Care Home in Scunthorpe have welcomed the Year of the Rat with a special Chinese New Year feast.

Staff at the home often theme food and activities around national days and holidays to give residents the opportunity to learn about different cultures and celebrations from around the world.

The team decorated the home with paper lanterns, traditional Chinese dragon artwork, and banners displaying the Chinese characters for ‘Year of the Rat.’

At lunchtime, residents enjoyed a celebratory feast of vegetable spring rolls, sweet and sour chicken with rice, and pineapple rings with ice cream for dessert.

Jean, a resident at St Mary’s Care Home, said; “The meal was very good. I enjoy Chinese food so it was a nice surprise.”

Fellow resident John said; “I had a good time and can’t wait for something else to happen, it’s my birthday this week and a singer is coming so that will be good.”

Experiencing New Cultures and Sharing Memories

Including celebrations from around the world in our activities programme not only helps residents to discover new cultures and flavours, but it can also help them to reminisce about their own experiences of those cultures. Sharing these personal memories and experiences can add a powerful extra dimension to activities. Personal stories also help residents and staff learn more about each other’s lives and interests.

With reference to this event, Mary Ann, another resident of St Mary’s Care Home, said; “I love real Chinese food. I got a taste for it when I spent five years there in my twenties. I travelled all over and would recommend it to everyone. The decorations were quite realistic so all in all it was a nice day.”

 

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The start of a new year is the perfect time to focus on hopes for the future and to set milestones to achieve. At St Mary’s Care Home in Scunthorpe, residents began 2020 by discussing the things that they would most like to accomplish this year.

As well as chatting about this year’s resolutions, the conversation led on to sharing new year’s resolutions we had made and sometimes broken in previous years. As you would expect, there were plenty of laughs along the way!

St Mary’s resident Jean started the resolution-making by saying; “I am planning on exercising more. But then I say that every year and never do!”

June, also a resident of St Mary’s Care Home, quipped; “I’m not making any this time, because I know that I won’t keep them!”

Another of our residents, Barrie, replied; “Ask my wife!”

While Joyce declared; “Maybe I should just listen more.”

Ensuring that our residents live fulfilled and meaningful lives is central to everything we do at St Mary’s Care Home. Whether new year’s resolutions are kept or broken, they are a great way to ensure our residents have a real sense of purpose, with something achievable to strive towards.

Our extensive activities programme includes gentle exercise to help promote mobility and independence. Residents also get to enjoy many games, quizzes and puzzles. These can help to stimulate the mind, improve cognitive skills, and enhance coordination. All of these things instil a satisfying sense of achievement, while also being great fun and something to look forward to.

You will find a great variety of things to join in with each week at St Mary’s, as well as one-to-one activities, in our ever-changing weekly schedule.

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It was a busy Christmastime for the residents of St Mary’s Care Home in Scunthorpe. The main highlight of the festive period at the home was the Christmas Fayre. On Saturday 14th December, relatives joined residents, staff, and visitors for an afternoon of Christmas food, games, entertainment, and the chance to meet Santa in his Grotto.

The St Mary’s team got into the spirit of the occasion by dressing up as elves, angels, and a Christmas tree! Visitors browsed stalls featuring handmade gifts, cards, and sweets, while a singer performed festive songs. Residents enjoyed rocking around the Christmas tree and seeing children open presents from Santa Claus.

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Residents at St Mary’s Care Home in Scunthorpe have enjoyed their first Christmas dinner of the season. A group from the home visited the local pub for a traditional roast turkey lunch with all of the trimmings.

To add to the festivities, residents enjoyed pulling crackers, telling Christmas jokes, and wearing novelty hats. Jean popped a turkey hat on her head and Liz modelled a very fetching Christmas pudding beanie, while Barry and Phil just enjoyed a quiet Christmas pint!

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Creative residents at St Mary’s Care Home in Scunthorpe have spent months knitting winter warmers for local abandoned dogs. Residents of St Mary’s have a great love of animals, with the care home itself being home to a number of pets.

After striking up a great relationship with North Lincolnshire based rescue centre Jerry Green Dog Rescue, a group of residents and some of the St Mary’s team visited the centre in Broughton. They got to meet the rescue dogs and delivered the coats and blankets they had handmade to help keep their furry friends warm.

Stella Bradley, activities co-ordinator at St Mary’s, said: “Our residents have been knitting like mad for months and we’re all delighted to have made 2 blankets, 6 coats and a toy. Our residents love knitting, and they love animals, so it was only natural to bring the two passions together to help Jerry Green Dog Rescue provide some extra home comforts for the rescue dogs.”

The rescue centre in Broughton was originally opened in 1961 by Jerry Green Dog Rescue after the passing of his own spaniel, Rusty, inspired him to set up a charity to rescue and rehome stray and unwanted dogs. The charity has expanded and now has five rescue centres in North and South Lincolnshire, North and East Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire.

Samantha Weston, Deputy Centre Manager at Jerry Green Dog Rescue said: “We were delighted when Stella contacted us and told us how the wonderful residents of St Mary’s had created the winter warmers for our dogs.

“We rely on volunteers to help us provide the best possible level of care for our furry residents and these winter warmers are greatly appreciated.”

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St Mary’s Care Home is just ten minutes from the beautiful Normanby Hall Country Park. Our residents love to go for walks through the parkland, and in the summer months, they enjoy picnics in the stunning grounds.

On one trip at the end of the summer, our residents stumbled across a stage crew setting up for a music festival in the park. The crew came over to greet our residents, and to talk to them about their exciting jobs. The St Mary’s residents loved hearing their stories of going on tour with famous bands and finding out how the sound equipment and stage lighting works.

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Residents of St Mary’s Care Home in Scunthorpe get to enjoy a packed activities programme. This includes regular group gatherings to play a wide selection of games. One of their big favourites is a handmade horse racing game.

After hearing how much residents enjoy their games afternoons, a kind family member set to work on a one of a kind wooden board game. Giant handcrafted racing horse playing pieces are placed on a foldable wooden racecourse. Using a giant dice, residents take turns to move their horse across the course. The first to cross the finish line is declared the winner.

Playing board games helps residents to reminisce about their younger years, and this game, in particular, has sparked many conversations about days out at the races.

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Residents can enjoy a “Knit ‘n’ Natter” at our weekly knitting group at St Mary’s Care Home. Recently we have been creating some wonderful woolly flower decorations for residents to personalise their rooms.
Liz, a resident at St Mary’s said; “I don’t know how to knit so I used a flower loom which was surprisingly easy. I made many of them in just a couple of sessions.”
 
Renee, also a St Mary’s resident added; “I used some of the flowers to make a bouquet of pink and white to match my bedroom.”
Knitting is great for improving residents’ coordination and cognitive skills and is just one of the many fun activities we offer at St Mary’s.
At St Mary’s Care Home, we love to help our residents do the things they enjoy most. This week we visited the Waters’ Edge Visitor Centre & Country Park on the banks of the Humber Estuary.
One resident said; “I used to go to nature reserves around the country, it was a hobby I took up when I retired. Going to this reserve was a real treat. I’ve been to nearly every reserve in the country but never this one.”
Set in 110 acres of stunning country park, it boasts a wealth of wildlife. St Mary’s resident Barry said; “I saw a lot of birds including a heron.”
Mary, also a resident, said; “I learned a lot about the different animals in the reserve and we saw a lovely little vole. It was so tiny with really bright eyes.”
Where possible, we are always happy to organise trips and activities inspired by the interests of our residents.

We have been trying Zumba Gold at St Mary’s! Local instructor Zumba Zoe has built up a great following across Scunthorpe and the surrounding areas, and recently popped in to give our residents a taster session.

Zumba Gold is based on the Latin-dance inspired Zumba workout, but is designed to be more accessible to beginners and those that require modifications to their exercise routine. This makes it the perfect, low impact physical activity to help improve our residents’ mobility. The music and dance elements also have a great impact on mental well-being.

St Mary’s resident Dolly said, “I had such fun! It was very energetic and I hope the lady will come again.”

Jean, also a resident at the care home added, “I loved the atmosphere it created. Everyone was happy and lively, I didn’t see anyone being grumpy or not joining in.”

It looks like Zumba Gold will become a regular feature at St. Mary’s from now on!

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