Wednesday, April 5, 2017


I was "hanging around" one of my old haunts this week, St. Mary's Home East, as a couple of our sisters are there right now for rehab following falls and broken bones. My mother was a resident there for 7 years, most of it on the 100-room assisted living side, but the last year or so on the 100-room full care side following a stroke.

Between her time there and living in a community with a number of 80 and 90-somethings, I've learned a lot about "parenting." The number one thing I've learned is this: although all parenting is basically the same, every parenting situation is unique and special. The trick is to find the parenting options that "fit" you and your family. St. Mary's East was a great fit for my Mom and me.

One of the things we both enjoyed was the seemingly endless celebration of holidays. Every window sill, desk corner and table top went through an annual progression from July 4th to Back to School to Halloween to Thanksgiving to Christmas (which was hands down the biggest and best) to New Year's, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, and with nary a breath, ta da, what I found this week: Easter (Never mind that we're headed into Holy Week....don't be a Scrooge bunny!) Can Memorial Day be far behind?!

St. Mary's was founded in 1884 by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Erie, who had already begun a hospital in nearby Meadville, PA and St. Vincent's hospital here in Erie. In 1991 they added a separate building for Alzheimer's patients and in 2001 a twin complex, St. Mary's Asbury Ridge, in west Erie.

There are a number of fine senior care facilities in the Erie area---we are indeed blessed. St. Mary's is surely one of them.

Thinking of you, Mom.