Mom arrived on Monday, April 7, for a week-long visit. She flew from Carlsbad to Dallas, changed planes in Dallas and flew into Waco Regional Airport, where I picked her up. It was a long day for her. The flights, themselves, weren't long, but she had a 2-1/2 hour lay-over at DFW.
The main purpose of her visit was to tour the three assisted living homes that had made my short-list of contenders. I previewed a number of places, for her, over the past few weeks and narrowed the list down to what I felt were the three best choices. She has decided she is ready to let someone else do her cooking, cleaning and laundering. And she's certainly deserving of some pampering, as she approaches 88 years old!
|The bluebonnets are blooming all over Central Texas now. Here's Mom standing in a patch of her soon-to-be state flowers!|
Each place we visited had some pros and cons. One was absolutely resort-like and had the largest apartments, but probably wouldn't accommodate her as she ages further; one was walking distance to our house, but we found it a bit dingy and tired looking inside; and one was perfect except that the apartments didn't have full kitchens - only kitchenettes. In the end, we chose that last one, Stoney Brook of Belton. Mom said it was the one that "felt like home." It's just four years old, and has such a pleasant, fresh interior, with lots of natural light and all the amenities anyone would want. Everyone we met as we toured - whether staff or resident - seemed happy and welcoming. As we thought about it a little longer, the issue of having only a kitchenette didn't seem to be that big of a deal. With all meals being provided, Mom will only need to have space to fix coffee, snacks, and her morning toast. (She doesn't eat a full breakfast, so will probably have her coffee and toast in her room.) And they have a little bistro, open 24-hours, with a convection oven available for the residents to use if they want to do some baking.
Stoney Brook is located in Belton, which is the little town just south of us. We timed it -- it takes 12 minutes from our front door to theirs. That's much better than the 8 hours we are apart right now.
So, Mom put herself on the wait list for a "one-bedroom grande" apartment, as seen here:
The grandes are all situated on corners of the building, so daylight comes into the living room from two sides, making it a space with lots of natural light. Some of them, though not all, have access to a small private patio. We don't know how long it will take for one to become available, but she has offered to take a smaller apartment, temporarily, if it comes open sooner, and then to make the final move when the one-bedroom grande is available. She's very anxious to make this move! Dan and I, of course, are also looking forward to her being closer, and happy for her in this new adventure.
I put her back on the plane in the wee hours of this morning, and she's already back home where she's beginning the sorting, selling, donating, packing process.