Forget Me Not: Wellness Wednesdays continue to make Craig’s elders smile | CraigDailyPress.com

Forget Me Not: Wellness Wednesdays continue to make Craig’s elders smile

Noelle Leavitt Riley

Craig resident Lois Stoffle receives an award on Wednesday for her participation in Wellness Wednesdays.

Wellness Wednesdays had an important event this week honoring Moffat County's senior citizens.

Organizers gave out dozens of awards to those who participate and volunteer with the program, making elders feel special for their contributions.

The Visiting Nurse Association's Wellness Wednesday program gives Craig's senior citizens a place to socialize, exercise, eat lunch and play cards each Wednesday.

"You get to see some good friends," said Gordan Grandbouche, who received several awards this week. "The exercise is light and it's age appropriate, so I like that."

Awards were given for the most arm curls, back stretches, two-minute step ups and chair stands, to name a few.

It's vitally important for our elder population to participate in low-impact exercises to stay healthy and to keep their bodies happy.

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"It helps keep us moving," said Marilyn Stevens who attends Wellness Wednesdays at the Journey Baptist Church each week. "It's a great place to come."

I've always been impressed with the care that our senior citizens receive in Craig.

Before my grandmother died in 2006, she suffered from terrible bedsores. She broke her hip and was confined to a bed. Unfortunately, the nursing home she live at in Santa Fe, New Mexico failed to administer physical therapy after her surgery.

It was a painfully sad sight. Her bedsores never healed before her death on Feb. 16, 2006. They're extremely difficult to treat.

The more that our elders can get out and about, the less they risk having trouble in the later years of life, which is why I fully embrace Wellness Wednesdays and commend the work that's done.

It was special to witness the seniors receiving awards, knowing that they were recognized for their dedication to their health and overall wellness.

"We have noise makers, and we can celebrate," said Jennifer Mattern, the Aging Well fitness coordinator for the VNA.

As each award was given, the seniors blew into the noise makers, laughing and having fun.

Former Craig Daily Press columnist Mary Jo Brown was in attendance, and it was wonderful seeing her. Lois Stoffle was kind enough to get Mary Jo to the event.

If you have a parent or grandparent you haven't visited, called or written to in a while, please take time to drop them a note or pick up the phone to make them feel special.

After all, if it weren't for them, we wouldn't be here.

Noelle Leavitt Riley is the editor of the Craig Daily Press and the Saturday Morning Press. She and her husband, Shawn Riley, run the Forget Me Not organization that takes donated flowers to elders in nursing homes, letting them know they're not forgotten by society. Reach her at 970-875-1790 or nriley@CraigDailyPress.com.

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