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10 Surprising Causes of Hearing Loss


We begin hearing in the womb, and the auditory processing part of the brain is the last sense to stop working when we are dying. While this may be a tough way to begin a conversation with you, I hope stating these facts works as a kind of wake up call. Since God designed us this way, the hearing sense must be vital to our being.

The Duttons, a family of musicians, will entertain at Advent Christian Village on April 22. Judge Simon Cowell said of the group, “I absolutely loved it!” when they performed on America’s Got Talent.

They Sing! They Dance! Don’t Miss the Duttons!


The final concert of the 2016-17 Live! at Dowling Park Artist Series is just around the corner. Some would say we’ve saved the best for last! Please join us for international touring and recording artists the Duttons at The Village Church on Saturday, April 22 at 7:00 p.m.

Helen Myers has spent the last half of her life in north Florida. Over a period of 30 years of that time, she worked at the Florida Sheriffs Boys Ranch, helping raise dependent and neglected boys.

A Little Love Goes a Long Way


Helen Myers, a five-year member of Advent Christian Village at Dowling Park (ACV), has been helping people for a long time — and doing a fine job of it. Even two years ago, at 90 years of age, she was asked if she would be willing to work some hours in a customer service role at ACV. She gladly accepted and still spends several mornings a week at the front desk of Carter House, greeting members and guests with a big smile. Some of her regulars even gift her with sugary snacks to thank her for her friendliness.

Kathy Bochow, one of the attendees at the Suwannee County Health and Wellness Fair held at Advent Christian Village at Dowling Park on March 31, has her cholesterol checked at the Lake City Medical Center booth.

Fair Promotes Health and Wellness in Suwannee County


The setting was Phillips Center at Advent Christian Village at Dowling Park (ACV). Tables covered with information about an array of services, agencies and resources lined the hallways and meeting spaces. It was the annual Suwannee County Health and Wellness Fair took place on March 31. This year’s event was sponsored by Advent Christian Village and Good Samaritan Center, ACV’s skilled nursing community.

Move to Improve: Exercise is Just as Important for Seniors


Not long ago, it was common belief that older adults didn’t need to exercise — retirement was time to just sit and relax. Another widespread idea was that exercise was actually harmful for people with certain ailments — “I can’t exercise because I have heart disease.” Now, more people than ever, at all ages, are exercising. So, does age-old wisdom prevail, or is exercise important for senior adults? If it is important, how much is enough?

Dennis Swanberg will deliver his family-friendly humor and impersonations to kick off Winter Retreat 2017 at Advent Christian Village on Friday, March 10, at 7:00 p.m.

Come for Golf, Guffaws and Growth at ACV


This week is Advent Christian Village’s biennial Winter Retreat. Winter Retreat is ACV’s combination revival and homecoming event. Many activities of spiritual renewal, fun and fellowship are planned, and you are invited to participate.

Deputy Sheriff Greg Kastor has worked most of his life in Suwannee County law enforcement. He now brings his considerable experience to the streets of Dowling Park.

There’s a New Sheriff’s Deputy in Town


Deputy Sheriff Greg Kastor is now on patrol in Dowling Park. The grandson of Eula Setzer, one of the first five orphans to move to Advent Christian Village in 1913, Dep. Kastor says working here feels like coming home.

Verna Simpson recently moved into Taylor Commons, a new neighborhood still under construction at Advent Christian Village at Dowling Park. The two benefits she’s most excited about are no yard work and the convenient location. When complete, Taylor Commons will house 30 apartments.

Brand New Apartments Opening in Dowling Park


Members and friends of ACV have been watching as a stretch of Dowling Park Drive has undergone a dramatic transformation. Where once cinderblock duplexes stood, now stands an entirely new neighborhood of townhome-style apartments called Taylor Commons. This project not only increases occupancy in that area, but also enhances curb appeal at ACV’s center.

Want a Better Life? Drop the Candy Bar!


Above treasures and wealth, health is one thing that no one can put a price tag on. The state of our health depends largely on choices we make during our lifetime. Are we exercising enough? Are we involved in risky behavior? And the question I’d like to focus on: Are we eating the right things? Did you know that one cookie here, one carrot there can still affect your health 10 years down the line? If it was easy to predict the impact of each of our food choices, I’m sure some of them would be reconsidered.

Three on a String — good, clean, hilarious entertainment — will perform at The Village Church in Dowling Park, Florida, Feb. 23.

Good, Clean, Hilarious Entertainment


Get your funny bone ready because Live! at Dowling Park is bringing back the hilariously entertaining Three on a String to Advent Christian Village for your knee-slapping enjoyment. This group of talented individuals have been pluckin’ and grinnin’ for satisfied audiences for more years than they’d care to admit, and they’re sure to leave you wanting more.

Sadie Feagle is about to celebrate her 100th birthday, defying the medical prediction given to her mother so long ago. The framed dress is the gown she was to be buried in prior to her third birthday.

100 Years Young


When someone turns 100 years old, you feel you need to ask them their secret. There are no secrets with Sadie Leona Feagle; she’ll tell you straight out, “Hard work never hurt nobody.” Talking with Sadie is a true privilege. After all, how often do you have the chance to talk with someone who remembers when the sun didn’t shine in the Florida sky for two weeks in the 1930s because of the Texas Dust Bowl, or who took cotton she grew on her farm to the gin to make her own mattress ticking?

Falling Happens to Other People, Not Me


Many people think falls are a normal part of aging. The truth is, they’re not. Most falls can be prevented — and you have the power to reduce your risk and the risk of loved ones. Exercising, managing medications, checking for vision problems, and making the living environment safer are all steps you can take to prevent falls.

Clearing the Clutter for a Better Life


Dealing with clutter is a common struggle in the US. Americans continually buy new clothes, new books and new gadgets without getting rid of anything. Those who lived through the Depression were conditioned to never throw anything away. Closets, attics and garages swell with “stuff,” especially for those who have lived in the same home for many years. However, clutter can be a real problem for senior adults. It can be a health hazard, and it quickly becomes overwhelming to get it under control. If you have a clutter problem, what can you do?

The Gainesville Pops performed a festive Christmas concert at Advent Christian Village on Dec. 10.

Gainesville Pops Brings Joy to Advent Christian Village


A big part of the holiday season is music. At Advent Christian Village (ACV) music plays a big part in helping to make the season bright.

ACV President Craig Carter presents Shirley Lawson a token of thanks during her retirement celebration on Dec. 14. Shirley worked over 31 years as a CNA at Advent Christian Village.

A Shining Example of ACV’s Mission


In December, Advent Christian Village (ACV) held a bittersweet celebration at Good Samaritan Center (GSC), its skilled nursing community — the retirement of Shirley Lawson. Shirley Lawson has worked as a CNA for ACV for 31 and a half years. Her outstanding dependability is usually the first quality anyone mentions when speaking about Shirley.

Scientific studies have begun to document a connection between living a lifestyle of faith and good health.

The Science of Healing Through Prayer


Many people believe science and faith cannot mix. Science can be observed, tested and proven. Spirituality can also be observed and tested, but many aspects of spirituality are difficult to prove. Faith is necessary when dealing with spiritual matters. But when tested over and over and the positive results appear to correlate, it seems impractical to discount what appears to be scientific proof of a spiritual matter. For example: healing through prayer.

Away from Home for the Holidays


Home for the holidays. Don’t those words paint a happy picture? Just imagine: In the living room is a giant tree laden with ornaments and presents piled underneath. Garlands and swags hang from banisters and mantles. Candles flicker in every window and hundreds of lights glow outside. It is a scene worthy of a Christmas card. But sometimes people find themselves lodged “at the inn” instead. Usually it’s only for a few days because Grandma’s house couldn’t fit everyone. Christmas is a time for joy, and even if you’re an out-of-towner, whether for one night or many, you can still have a holiday that is merry and bright.

The nationally acclaimed classical crossover group, Annie Moses Band, will be performing at Advent Christian Village on Jan. 12, 2017.

Annie Moses Band Comes to ACV


Several years ago, my family and I had the opportunity to attend an Annie Moses Band concert at North Florida Community College in Madison, Florida. We had never heard of the group. We knew it was a family of musicians, and that there would be singing and people playing instruments like violins, piano and percussion. It had been a long week and the four of us talked about not going, even though we already had tickets. Ultimately, we decided to go. By the end of the first song, we were very glad we were there.

The Village Church in Dowling Park will be presenting Destination Joy, their musical Christmas gift to the community, Sat., Dec. 17, at 6:30 p.m.; and Sun., Dec. 18, at both 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.

‘Destination Joy’: A Dramatic Cantata


Are you having trouble finding your Christmas joy this year? Have you lost a loved one who you miss terribly? Are you disappointed because it seems like your prayers aren’t being heard? Is your life just not turning out the way you had hoped? If you can relate to any of these sentiments — or if you know someone who can — plan to attend Destination Joy, the Village Church’s Christmas performance that is half play, half cantata, and full of hope.

What is GriefShare?


Each of us has experienced grief. People can grieve many different things in life — homesickness, side effects of advanced aging or illness, and even general disappointments. And we have all experienced grief due to loss of life, whether for a stranger (9/11, Columbine, etc.), a friend, family members, or possibly spouses. Is there help for people dealing with grief?

Holiday Visits — Offering Practical Help to Loved Ones


The holidays are a special time for family and friends to get together. It’s not uncommon for us to visit a senior loved one who would benefit from our help. As you make your holiday plans, think about how you can help your loved one with things in the home so they don’t have to do it later. Offering your assistance during your holiday visit is a great way to show love and support in ways that linger on throughout the year. It’s natural to be concerned that your loved one remains safe and happy in their home as they age. You have a great opportunity during your holiday visit to help them … and make your visit even more meaningful.

Advent Christian Village goes out of its way to make every Christmas a very special time. Decorations delight the eyes, scrumptious meals tickle the taste buds, and a plethora of holiday events stir the soul.

Advent ‘Christmas’ Village is Coming


For decades, Advent Christian Village (ACV) has endeavored to make Christmastime a special time, especially for those who call it home. Plans begin months ahead of time that will turn Advent Christian Village into Advent “Christmas” Village. Decorations delight the eyes, scrumptious meals tickle the taste buds, and a plethora of holiday events stir the soul. You don’t have to be an Advent Christian Village member to enjoy the celebration; everyone is invited to take part.

Harold Garner says one key to being a successful stained glass artist is to have a proper work space. Harold has been crafting stained glass beauties for over 10 years, and he is very talented at it.

Stained Glass is an Artform


Pliers, cutters, grinders, soldering irons, lead, copper, and … glass — these are the tools of a stained glass artist. A touch of engineering, a dash of imagination and skilled hands come together to produce works of art that can only be truly appreciated in the light. Just like painting and sculpting, anyone can pick up the tools and produce a product. But it takes an artist to produce something beautiful. Harold Garner is an artist.

Sharon Belovarac (left) and Lynne Spriggs (two surveyors with CARF) pause with Advent Christian Village President/CEO Craig Carter at the very start of ACV’s on-site survey. A third surveyor, Brent Edgerton, performed his duties remotely. ACV recently learned that they were awarded a Five-Year Term of Accreditation.

Five More Years!


CARF-CCAC (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities - Continuing Care Accreditation Commission) announced that Advent Christian Village (ACV) has been awarded a Five-Year Term of Accreditation. The announcement came early this month following an on-site survey at the end of September.

Don’t Be a Statistic — Avoid the Flu


Influenza, commonly known as the flu, is a respiratory condition that can cause serious complications, especially in young children, older adults, and people with certain medical conditions. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 115,000 people across the U.S. are hospitalized each year as a result of severe illness from the flu. Influenza is the ninth leading cause of death in the country. The good news is that there is something we can all do to keep our families and communities safer. The CDC recommends that everyone six months of age or older be vaccinated annually.

This multi-talented family will bring a toe-tapping mix of bluegrass instrumentation, soaring vocal harmonies, and “wow”-generating clog dancing. Williamson Branch performs at Advent Christian Village Friday, Oct. 14.

Acclaimed Bluegrass Family and Concert Pianist to Grace the Dowling Park Stage


Live! at Dowling Park Artist Series has already delighted its audiences. Gateway City Big Band from Lake City, Florida, brought the World War-era big band sound to Dowling Park, performing old and new tunes in the style of Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller. Miami’s Con Brio thrilled with a wide range of classic and contemporary tunes performed expertly on two violins, a viola and a cello. Two more musical performances are scheduled within the next two months: A talented family of musicians and a new solo pianist.

Renovations Beautify Good Samaritan Center


Advent Christian Village at Dowling Park (ACV) is much more than just a nursing home; it is truly a village, with homes, apartments, stores, restaurants, a medical center … the list goes on. Despite ACV’s diverse and varied offerings, its nursing home, Good Samaritan Center (GSC) — a skilled nursing community offering short-term rehabilitation stays and long-term nursing care — is a big part of Advent Christian Village’s continuum of care. Because of its importance, for the better part of three years, GSC has been undergoing a complete renovation — and we are happy to report that the renovations have reached a milestone.

The Risks of Using Someone Else’s Wi-Fi


The internet has made doing many things much easier. It provides instant gratification for shopping for that perfect outfit or new gadget, and banking and bill payment services are just a click away. But the internet also has made it much easier for cybercriminals to get your personal information.

Low-Income Senior Housing: Great Places to Call Home


No matter our age, we all crave a place to call our own that is comfortable and secure, has friends close by, and affords privacy when we want it. We do not “outgrow” the desire for these things. But, sometimes, after the paychecks stop coming and the savings account dwindles, seniors wonder what’s next. How will they afford a place of their own? What are their options?

Advent Christian Village’s Autumn Fest and Auto Show will take place at the Village Square Oct. 1. Come enjoy a taste of fall with the greater community.

Cruising into Fall


With fall just around the corner, Advent Christian Village (ACV) will kick off the season on October 1 with its annual Autumn Fest and Cruizin on the Suwannee Auto & Truck Show. Come enjoy a day of fall festivities, flavors, sights and sounds. The public is invited and admission is free.

Advent Christian Village’s new Service Coordinator, Nancy Moral (center), is already loved by many of ACV’s members.

ACV’s New Service Coordinator is a Perfect Fit


When asked what it is about Advent Christian Village that makes it so great, most members talk about the people — not only the people who live here, but also the amazing people who work here. One of ACV’s newest employees, Service Coordinator Nancy Moral, is no exception to this praise.

Plan a Fall Foliage Foray


For many, the beauty of fall is one of the highlights of the year. As leaves change from shades of green to yellow, orange and red hues, the landscape takes on a glow that delights and inspires. But for the average Joe, it’s hard to know exactly when trees will be at their best. Here is a handy guide provided by to use if you’re planning a fall foliage foray.

The Keys to a Successful Reunion


What do family, friends, co-workers, classmates and special occasions have in common? Memories! One way to celebrate those memories and to continue them is with a reunion. Reunions can be planned any time of the year. Life gets busy and busyness makes time pass rapidly. Our time is valuable, so it’s important to make the best of it. Celebrate, grab those happy moments, and reflect on them when you can. Most of us have to make an effort to create those moments. Spending time together away from daily distractions with all the relatives, friends, classmates, or co-workers creates quality time as well as lasting memories. You might only see one another once or twice a year or maybe it’s been several years. Reunions make it count, but they don’t just happen — someone has to make them happen.

One of the seven musical acts coming to Advent Christian Village as part of the 2016-17 Live! at Dowling Park Artist Series are America’s Got Talent finalists the Duttons. The Duttons will finish the season in April. The first show of the season — Gateway City Big Band of Lake City, Florida — happens at the end of the month.

2016-17 Live! at Dowling Park Artist Series Season


Advent Christian Village recently announced its 29th season of the Live! at Dowling Park Artist Series. This season, seven musical performances have been scheduled from August through April. Solo vocalists, instrumentalists and bands will once again delight and amaze ticket holders gathered at Advent Christian Village and season tickets are on sale now.

Natalie Gordon, ARNP-C, recently joined the medical staff at Copeland Medical Clinic in Dowling Park. She specializes in geriatrics and is available for appointments — call (386) 658-5300.

New ARNP Rounds Out ACV Medical Team


One of the vital services provided at Copeland Medical Center at Advent Christian Village in Dowling Park is Copeland Clinic. There, outstanding medical care is offered to area residents five days a week. Board certified family doctor/geriatrician Dr. Maria Gonzalez leads the medical team, along with two nurse practitioners: Beth Fulford, and newest team member, Natalie Gordon.

Paddling down the Suwannee River could be your next great adventure.

Consider a Canoe for Your Last Summer Excursion


Where has summer vacation gone? It seems like only yesterday the last school bell was ringing and we were looking forward to a few months of the easy life: lounging by the pool, trips to see family, and vacations at interesting places. In many locations, school is already back in session, and it won’t be long before the rest follow suit. But don’t despair if you’re still hearing the call of the wild for one more trip. Florida will still be warm and sunny for a few more months, and we’d like to suggest a fun-filled trip down the beautiful Suwannee River.

Designing Your Home for Your Senior Years


When designing or shopping for a new home, we should consider the livability and comfort the home will afford us. There are always specific features that we are attracted to, and a general flow of spaces that we feel will make our particular living style more comfortable. When a young bachelor shops for a home, he looks for different features than a couple with children. Their needs have changed and so they look for the features to accommodate a family. Designing a home or adapting a home for your senior years requires a similar rethinking of your current needs and what your future needs might be.

RiverOak Technical College and Advent Christian Village partnered at the beginning of this year to bring a unique, five-week Certified Nursing Assistant course to Good Samaritan Center. The first graduating class graduated at the end of March. Pictured from left to right: GSC Administrator Keri Hilliard, GSC Director of Nursing Judy Crager, RiverOak Patient Care Technician Instructor Traci Thompson, GSC Director of Staff Development Brenda O'Steen, five graduates (Toquita Gandy, Kaitlyn Lawson-Mrus, Adrienne Lovett, Jessica Nichols and Sabrina Watkins), and RiverOak Director Walter Boatright.

RiverOak CNA Class Held at ACV a Success


Following Suwannee-Hamilton Technical Center’s identity change to RiverOak Technical College (Live Oak, Florida) last year, administration added several new program opportunities. Early this year, the college renewed its partnership with Advent Christian Village (ACV) in order to offer a unique, five-week Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) class taught at Good Samaritan Center, ACV’s skilled nursing community. This isn’t the first class of this type to be taught at ACV and they are thrilled to be working with RiverOak to once again offer more medical education in western Suwannee County.

Richard and Patricia Hanks live part of the year in their River Woods home at Advent Christian Village and the rest of the year in their mountain home in north Georgia. One reason for maintaining their Georgia home is because they are currently the only two bailiffs in Towns County, Georgia.

Richard and Patricia Hanks: Advent Christian Village’s Bailiffs


Advent Christian Village members Richard and Patricia Hanks’ relationship started in a courthouse. In fact, they still spend a lot of time in a Georgia courtroom, but they’re not in trouble; they’re bailiffs.

Advent Christian Village has a team of Service Coordinators ready to provide whatever support their members living independently need. Ashley Scarborough (left) is one such caring individual.

A Valuable Resource: Service Coordinators at ACV


If you are a senior adult who is hospitalized following a fall or an illness, who do you turn to for help when it’s time to go home? Your family or friends? What if none are available? At Advent Christian Village (ACV) the answer is easy — you call your Service Coordinator. Or better yet, the hospital discharge coordinator calls the Service Coordinator with the details of the kind of care you will need after your discharge. From there, the Service Coordinator sets up any necessary services, like delivered meals, housekeeping, or home care. They even see to it that prescriptions are filled and that you have transportation to follow-up medical appointments and specialists. This is just one of the facets of the Service Coordinator’s role.

Falls are dangerous, but avoidable. Have a fall assessment done by professionals, such as the therapy department at Advent Christian Village.

Tips for Lowering Your Risk of Falling


“Falls are an inevitable part of aging. There is nothing to do to prevent falls.” These myths are commonly believed. However, research tells us that there is much that can be done to reduce and even prevent falls.

High school juniors and seniors have been training to be leaders at Camp Suwannee in Dowling Park for 10 years.

Ten Years of Developing Stronger Leaders


May 10, Advent Christian Village held a celebration in honor of 10 years of the Camp Suwannee Leadership Development Training program. A large group of former students as well as current and past leaders attended. It was a fun evening full of remembrances, congratulations, and hope for the future.

Rosemary Humbles Retires from The Village Church


A lot has changed since 1972. In 1972, bell bottoms and body suits were in style, two Apollo missions landed Americans on the moon, a gallon of gas cost 55 cents, the original Godfather premiered, and Atari released PONG. The year 1972 was also a remarkable year for Advent Christian Village (ACV) because of the addition of several key staff member, and among them were Jim and Rosemary Humbles. Jim retired as president of ACV in 2008. And this month, Rosemary is following suit, retiring from the position she has held since 1981: minister of music and education.

Pill Organizers: Keeping You on the Right Medication Track


As everyone knows, the memory starts to suffer with age. Whether we blame it on forgetfulness, old age, or too much other stuff to remember, most of us feel the effects of not remembering everything we’d like to. But when forgetfulness gets in the way of our health — such as forgetting to take our prescription medications — it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Moving Your Parent to a Nursing Home: A Caregiver’s Observations


There may come a time when you need to help a loved one — due to illness, injury or condition — move into an assisted living facility or nursing home. While even the logistics of helping someone can make this type of move intimidating, the addition of strong emotions, memories, and “stuff” can easily be overwhelming. As the responsible person, you will need to consider your loved one’s finances, mail, clothing, and other personal goods, as well as the facility’s processes and approvals.

These seven Suwannee High School seniors received scholarship from Marvin E. Jones Memorial Trust. Pictured (l–r) are Scholarship Trustee Robert Jones, Krunal Shukla, Tessa Ferreira, Kyler Gray, Kaitlyn Rogers (winner of the four-year scholarship), Blake Ulmer, Megan Letu, Cari Blalock and Scholarship Trustee Mike Jones.

Advent Christian Village Celebrates 25 Years of Scholarships


Advent Christian Village (ACV) hosts many annual events, but an event on April 19 hosted a group of nervous high school seniors. For the 25th year, the Marvin E. Jones Memorial Scholarship finalists gathered with their loved ones in Dowling Park to learn whether they would be the recipient of a large college scholarship. “Take a deep breath and count to 10,” advised last year’s top scholarship winner, Darrah Lane, who explained — during a report on how her scholarship had helped her during her first year of college — how nervous she had been a year ago.

This stately, young Floridian not only spent some time as the postmistress of Dowling Park, but also became the first female mayor south of the Mason-Dixon Line when she won her Live Oak election.

A ‘Ruby’ in the Rough: Dowling Park’s Postmistress and the South’s First Female Mayor


The United States of America will turn 240 years old this summer. Compared to most of the world, that is very young for a country. Similarly, Dowling Park, Florida, became a community around 115–120 years ago: very young by the world’s standards, young even when compared to most cities in Florida, but still historic for our southern United States. One historic individual who called this area home for most of her life was Ruby Estelle Jordan.

What is Cancer, Anyway?


Cancer is a major reason for deaths worldwide. It leads to more deaths when compared with AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. Deaths from cancer globally are forecasted to continue to increase to over 11 million in 2030.

The Arts in Health Care


Pablo Picasso said, “The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” No matter a person’s physical, mental, emotion or spiritual state, some form of art is going to appeal to them, whether it’s music, drama, dance or a painting, sculpture or quilting. And sometimes, when that “dust” is cancer, depression or Alzheimer’s disease, art can be a soothing ointment.

Librarian Rhoda Odom leads a monthly book club at Advent Christian Village.

Advent Christian Village Loves Books


A library is being built in Dowling Park. But the locals aren’t waiting until the future Jo Kennon Dowling Park Public Library opens to get excited about books and library programs. Inside the Phillips Center, just down the road from the library’s construction site, the Dowling Park Suwannee River Regional Library (SRRL) Book Club has been meeting monthly since September 2015.

An Artist of Three Dimensions


Rosemary Eakins has been creating art in three dimensions since around the time she started school. Her apartment overlooking the Suwannee River at Advent Christian Village is a testimony to the skills she learned and has honed over the years. On tables and shelves, and in bookcases and cabinets, are tiny rooms full of tiny furniture, clothes, and faux food, animals and people. The realism and creativity is astounding.

When a Parent is Unsafe Behind the Wheel


As a child grows, their parents watch them and encourage them to do more in the name of maturity. And sometimes, as a senior becomes more frail, their child watches them and encourages them to do less in the name of safety. It’s a difficult role reversal.

Margy DeGeorge, an Advent Christian Village member, worked with President Ronald Reagan for a year and a half on a jobs program she helped develop. After her involvement was over, he presented to her this “Summer Jobs Award” in the Rose Garden at the White House.

Remembering Ronald Reagan


Nancy Reagan’s recent passing has prompted many people to express a wide range of emotions on social media. Conservatives remember President Ronald Reagan’s widow as a strong, positive and caring individual. She died 12 years after her husband, the 40th president of the United States.

Stress causes all kinds of problems. To counter it, engage in relaxing activities such as those offered by the Conference & Retreat Center at Advent Christian Village.

10 Health Benefits of Relaxation


You may have heard that a little bit of stress is actually good for you. In the just-right amount, that adrenaline rush can power you through a long day at work, boost your workouts and more. But while it feels good to conquer the day, in the end, it just simply feels better — and is more beneficial to your health — to relax.

Are Mom and Dad Still Safe Behind the Wheel?


A time of great anticipation in almost every American teen’s life is when they can get their driver’s license. Do you remember the family discussions leading up to the time prior to getting your own license? How excited you were for the benefits you would have once that driver’s license was in your hands? Your new license held your passport to freedom and new adventures.

Feb. 13, Advent Christian Village will hold the Suwannee Gala for Treasure Seekers with silent and live auctions which benefit sending kids to camp and the ministries of Camp Suwannee.

Benefit Auction Helps Make Camp Possible for Kids


Advent Christian Village (ACV) has been helping kids since its beginning over 102 years ago. Five orphans from North Carolina moved to Dowling Park in 1913 because they needed a place to live and Advent Christian Village was born. Today, children do not live at Advent Christian Village. Times have changed and orphanages do not exist in the United States any longer. But ACV has not stopped helping children. It has many programs designed to minister to the young, including Camp Suwannee, the full-service campground located at Advent Christian Village.

Ed Siergiej entered the US Army at 18. He experienced many hard times during his time overseas, but he never lost sight of the fact that he wanted to help people.

War is About People


Although the 70th anniversary of the great Second World War has come and gone, we’d like to spotlight one more WWII veteran who calls Advent Christian Village home before we close this book. Our final interview is with a soldier who never lost sight of what this war was all about: people.

Building Muscle After 60


Some people believe a common myth that, after age 60, the human body is unable to build muscle. The fact is, according to Dr. David Heber, director of UCLA's Center for Human Nutrition, new research published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise finds older adults who begin lifting weights after 50 may win the battle against age-related muscle loss.

Mom Needs a Nursing Home — How Will She Pay?


Your loved one’s health has suddenly or gradually declined. They need 24-hour medical attention, but not at a hospital. Their medical need is greater than what home health care can cover, so most often the best option is for them to stay in a skilled nursing facility. What happens next? And, how does it get paid for?

Victor Grondzki poses with his fiancé, Florence, before being shipped overseas as an infantry radio operator toward the end of World War II. Vic spent 22 months on foreign soil before the war ended and his life was changed for the better.

A Life Improved by World War II


Seventy years ago, World War II was officially over, but its effects were still being felt across the globe. For some, the effects of their time during the Second World War have yet to completely die away. For one such soldier, the things he learned and the experiences he lived through helped to shape his entire outlook on life, strengthening his character and improving the world around him — a Marine by the name of Vic Grondzki.

Dr. George Cohen with Dermatology Associates of Tallahassee is just one of many specialists seeing patients at Copeland Medical Center in Dowling Park.

Come to Dowling Park to See a Medical Specialist


Advent Christian Village (ACV) has been on the cutting edge of medicine for many, many years. ACV was the first retirement community in the nation to invite medical students to complete their training in geriatric care on its campus. In the early 70s, it became the first retirement community in Florida to have its own outpatient clinic. It was the first retirement community in Florida to employ a physician’s assistant. Today, Copeland Medical Center, a state-of-the-art medical complex, is located on the north side of campus providing medical care, a pharmacy, outpatient rehab and dental care for its members and the general public. Part of the medical care it provides is by offering a range of medical specialists, reducing the need to travel greater distances for medical care.

Feel Comfortable When Visiting Grandma in the Nursing Home


It’s Christmastime again — and that usually includes visiting family who you may only see infrequently. For some, a family member may live in a nursing home or assisted living facility. Because of inexperience, some people feel so uncomfortable at nursing homes that they avoid visiting loved ones who live there. Some people find it depressing; others just don’t know what to say. It can be awkward, but if you are prepared, it can be a meaningful time for both of you.

Alan Leith enlisted in the Army Air Corps during World War II. He started out as a mechanic, but performed many other duties, including firing mortars with the 91st Chemical Mortar Battalion.

Battle of the Bulge Survivor Finally Finds Peace


It’s been said that war changes people. Those that go away are changed. Those that stay home are changed. And sometimes, the greatest changes happen after the warrior returns home. On this 70th anniversary of World War II, we take a look at one such soldier. Alan Leith went away a boy and, like many others, he came home a troubled man.

Gift Ideas for the Senior Adult in Your Life - UPDATED


Sometimes it’s hard to choose the right gift for an aging parent, grandparent or loved one. After all, they’ve had a lifetime of gifts and often have a different perspective on life than you may have. Here are some great holiday gift ideas to help get you started.

Help! My Dad is Dating Again!


While some marriages end in divorce, there are many relationships that last the long haul. Couples celebrate 30, 40, 50 or more wedding anniversaries all the time. For most of these long-lasting marriages, when one spouse dies, the loss is tragic, not only for the widowed, but also for the family left behind. Many times, the children are grown and have children of their own. Traditions have been followed for decades. The loss is large and if the widowed spouse moves on before the rest of the family feels they are ready, problems can arise.

Mary Carter, then Mary Meter, was a member of the Navy WAVES during WWII. Her job was to assess film data for accuracy of gun and bomb sites.

Making History as a Female WWII Sailor


Prior to World War I, women were rarely found working outside of the home. Common thinking was that women should support their families by staying home. During World War I, America quickly realized women were needed to fill the thousands of jobs left vacant when its men joined the war effort. Women were also allowed to enlist in the Navy and Marine Corps — a first for American armed forces. After the war ended, our soldiers returned to their jobs and most women returned to their homes. But when World War II broke out, women once again hung up their aprons and joined the workforce. And a greater number of women enlisted. Mary Carter, current Advent Christian Village member, was one such woman.

Dr. Laurel Pfeil (left) consults with Ashley Swinson, RN. Dr. Pfeil is a new consulting geriatrician at Advent Christian Village's Good Samaritan Center.

Geriatrician Teams Up with ACV


Advent Christian Village (ACV) is happy to announce an addition to its medical team. Dr. Laurel Pfeil, a licensed geriatrician, is assisting ACV’s physician, Dr. Maria Gonzalez and Beth Fulford, ARNP-C, with admission assessments and regulatory visits at Good Samaritan Center, ACV’s skilled nursing community.

Don’t Let Sibling Friction Worsen a Parent’s Health Issues


When a senior adult experiences health problems, it can be a great blessing to them when their children are available to help. Help can be given in different ways: phone calls of encouragement and advice, going along on doctor appointments to help understand and remember information, helping more at the house, assisting with finances, or even providing hands-on care. Having more children usually equates to more help. However, when there’s disagreement among children about what’s best for the parent, more stress can be added to an already stressful situation.

Katrina Fillyaw, Good Samaritan Center’s new Assistant Administrator, has worked at Advent Christian Village since 2008. After intensive training, she recently earned her Nursing Home Administrator’s license.

ACV Employee Earns New Position


Advent Christian Village is blessed to have outstanding staff members who carry out its mission each day. Several have taken additional training in order to grow and advance within the organization. One such employee is Good Samaritan Center’s (GSC) new assistant administrator, Katrina Fillyaw.

ACV’s Bridge to Medical Care at Home


Advent Christian Village (ACV) is a full service community, with living options ranging from independent living to skilled nursing and even memory care; there is something for virtually everyone at ACV. ACV Home Care offers different solutions for those who need varying degrees of in-home help. But you don’t have to be an ACV member to receive these services.

Your Right to the Life and Care You Prefer


Do you remember the name Terri Schiavo? Her name was prominent in the news beginning in the late 1990s. Terri had suffered a cardiac arrest and massive brain injury due to lack of oxygen in 1990. Within a couple of months, Terri’s diagnosis was changed to that of a persistent vegetative state. Eight years later, Terri’s husband petitioned the court to have her feeding tube removed. Her parents fought the petition and a heated legal battle began. The case passed through many court systems and reached as high up as President George W. Bush. Finally, in 2005 Terri’s feeding tube was removed for the last time (it had been removed and reinserted once during the legal struggle) and she died 13 days later. Why a seven-year legal struggle over a feeding tube? Because Terri’s husband was confident that his wife would not want to live in such a vegetative state, and her parents believed that, as long as their daughter was alive, she should be allowed to remain so.

Earl Van Amburg stands on Japanese soil just after the end of World War II in 1945 or 1946 while serving as a Boiler Technician in the US Navy.

No Service is Unimportant: A World War II Spotlight


When Earl Van Amburg was asked if he’d agree to an interview as another of ACV’s World War II veterans, during this 70th anniversary of the war, he agreed, but he warned that his story wouldn’t be interesting because he never saw combat. We feel that any veteran’s story is important and interesting. See if you agree.

My Dad Needs a Speech Therapist. What is That?


What exactly is a speech-language pathologist (SLP), or “speech therapist,” as they are frequently called? When someone mentions physical therapy, people instantly have some understanding of what lies before them: Some part of their body isn’t working quite right and so a therapist will physically work with them in order to correct or lessen the problem. But, speech therapy? Is the therapist just going to teach them how to talk? Much more than that, a speech therapist’s job is to evaluate and provide therapy for a variety of disorders, not all of which are speech based, but most deal with communication or the mouth and throat.

Dealing with Grief and Loss


We deal with different kinds of loss in our lives: the loss of a loved one through death, the loss of a relationship through divorce or separation, the loss of a career or ministry position. It could even be the loss of an idea, possibly the idea of how we thought our lives would turn out. The pain of loss is very real, no matter the cause.

In Service of God and Country


Seventy years ago, World War II was almost a year old. The United States had yet to enter the war directly, though they were sending supplies to their allies in Europe. Germany, Italy, Japan and Russia were marching (literally and figuratively) through Europe and Asia, defeating and laying claim to those countries they desired. It was a frightening time at home and abroad. And things had only just begun.

Preparing for Hurricanes in Florida


California has its earthquakes. Kansas has its “twisters.” New England has its nor'easters. And along other areas, the southeast has its hurricanes. Hurricane season, the time of the year when more hurricanes hit, is June 1 through Nov. 30. It’s during this time that hurricane preparedness becomes important.

The Gift That Your Children Don't Know They Want


Parents spend their lives helping and worrying about their children, but in their senior years, their adult children begin helping and worrying about them. At this stage, there is a wonderful gift that parents can give to their children that will make this time much easier for them, and will help ensure that their own wishes are followed.

Crowds of Village members and friends walk through two open apartments in the first completed row house of Taylor Commons, Advent Christian Village’s newest neighborhood. The new homes are modern and well-appointed.

Taylor Commons Holds Open House, Members Move in


Since Advent Christian Village (ACV) announced its new Master Development Plan in October 2013, the members and friends of the Village have been watching and waiting as the stretch of Dowling Park Drive opposite the Village Square and Village Centre underwent a dramatic transformation. Buildings were removed, trees were felled, truckloads of dirt were brought in, power lines were buried, new water and sewer lines were installed, foundations were poured, walls and roofs were erected … What was old has become new.

Debbie Wilkes has been working with Good Samaritan Center at Advent Christian Village’s members in two flower gardens for many years. The members love “digging in the dirt.”

Digging in the Dirt at Good Samaritan Center


Good Samaritan Center, Advent Christian Village’s skilled nursing community, is divided into three neighborhoods, each named for flowers: Dogwood, Magnolia and Camellia. But Good Samaritan Center’s flowers aren’t restricted to neighborhood names; two gardens filled with various plants, including many types of flowers, adorn two of its courtyards. Debbie Wilkes, court clerk on Dogwood, oversees the beautification of these gardens.

Advent Christian Village’s New Website


Advent Christian Village (ACV) is happy to announce that it has a brand new website design. ACV spent months designing the new look and is sure visitors will find the new design more user friendly and helpful.

Guidelines for Dealing with an Aging Parent


As parents age, new challenges also arise for their adult children. Sometimes it seems the roles have reversed and you are the one who is now giving advice and being protective. There are frustrations every child of an aging parent must deal with. Some are major, most are minimal. Our parents experience physical challenges, whether it is sight, hearing or even the ability to walk. They also may experience mental and emotional challenges. Their memory may be failing. Their ability to weigh their comments before speaking may be diminished and decision making isn’t what it used to be. All of these and more are a normal part of aging and a part of being the child of an aging adult. Are there guidelines that show us how to handle these situations?

One Voice Choir, a youth choir from Montgomery, Alabama, will perform at The Village Church June 5 at 7:00 p.m.

Alabama Youth Choir Tour Makes a Stop in Dowling Park


Advent Christian Village is excited to announce that One Voice Youth Choir, a touring choir of First Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama, has added Dowling Park as one of its stops on their Mission Tour 2015 to Miami, Florida. The choir will arrive Friday evening, June 5, to perform a 7:00 concert at The Village Church.

Can you find Joy in all of these bears? Joy Whitmore crafted 35 bears by hand to send to Victory Junction, a camp for kids with special needs in North Carolina. The NASCAR-themed bears will serve as welcome gifts.

Sewing Bears of Encouragement


How many of us know someone who has said, “I am gonna hate aging. I won’t be able to do the things I love anymore or make any meaningful impact on anyone’s life, or even my own for that matter.” I can tell you firsthand that it does not matter if you are eight or 80 years old; if there is something you want to achieve and have the positive outlook to see it through, then there is nothing you cannot do. Victory Junction and Joy Whitmore are both proof of that.

The Untold Benefits of a Geriatrician


You may be asking, “Just what is a geriatrician and who should see one?” According to the American Geriatrics Society, a geriatrician is a medical doctor who has specific training to meet the unique needs of older adults. Illnesses, diseases and medications may affect older people differently than younger adults. Older patients often have multiple health problems and take numerous medications. A geriatrician is specifically trained to provide the quality of care that takes these unique circumstances into consideration. In most cases, geriatricians are primary care physicians who are board-certified in either family medicine or internal medicine. In addition to their primary board certification a geriatrician has completed additional training in Geriatric Medicine.

What is ‘Assisted Living,’ Anyway?


“Assisted living” is a term most people are familiar with, but they usually also have many questions about what it is and is not. How does it differ from nursing home care or independent living? Is it right for me or for my loved one?

ACV’s woodworking shop recently built bins used for collecting new member clothing at ACV’s nursing home, Good Samaritan Center (GSC). Dick Grillo, president of the Watkins Hobby Shop Club, presents the keys to the bins to GSC Administrator in Training Katrina Fillyaw (center) and Administrator Keri Hilliard (right).

ACV’s Craftiest Spot


Near the heart of Advent Christian Village is a special hobby center where creative people enjoy building bookshelves, making jewelry, and painting landscapes.

Advent Christian Village member Ted Jones (left); Ted’s friend JohnAlan Boryk (right); and Cynthia, a friend of JohnAlan’s, stand in front of the famous Edmund Pettus Bridge with Selma, Alabama, in the background. Ted was excited to attend the commemorative events of “Bloody Sunday” in Selma last month.

ACV Member Finally Marches from Selma


Last month, 70,000 people — including the current and former presidents of the United States and a congressional delegation — gathered in Selma, Alabama, to honor the 50th anniversary of March 7, 1965, an important day for American civil rights. On that day, protestors set out for the first time to march from Selma to the Alabama state capital of Montgomery to protest what they saw as the unjust treatment of African-American citizens who were attempting to exercise their constitutional right to vote.

Cancer Screenings: Sometimes More Harm Than Good


Many are under the impression that the more screening tests their doctor prescribes, the healthier they will be. Testing often is the key to staying in good health, right? Not necessarily.

Dr. John Nicely

Herbal Supplements Won’t Hurt Me, Right?


Herbal remedies have been around for thousands of years. Most people think they cannot hurt you because they are sold over the counter. What people don’t realize is that there are some major issues that can affect the health of those taking herbs. Before you add an herbal supplement to your medicine cabinet, familiarize yourself with some basic knowledge about interactions and side effects.

Jean Patterson, Infection Control and Quality Assurance Nurse (left), and Sharon Raulerson, LPN (right), were honored by Advent Christian Village for their years of service at the end of last month. Each has worked at ACV since 1984. Keri Hilliard, Vice President of Health Services (center), loves having such loyal employees taking care of the residents and members of the Village.

Loyal Employees Honored for 310 Years of Service


Twice a year, Advent Christian Village recognizes staff members who have passed milestones in the length of their service to ACV. Beginning at their five-year anniversary and continuing in five-year increments, employees are honored at a luncheon and are given meal vouchers for family members and friends to join them. Co-workers and Village members are also encouraged to attend to show their support and appreciation.

Overcome the Great Lie and Choose a Great Life


Imagine a life where you are in control, where you spend your days the way you would like, with a variety of appealing activities to choose from and free from challenging responsibilities.

Visiting During Flu Season


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “as of late December, all national key flu indicators are elevated and about half of the country is experiencing high flu activity.”

Don’t Get Scammed


Scams come in all shapes and sizes. The three above are only the tip of the ice burg. No matter how wonderful an opportunity you’re presented with, how official an e-mail may look, or how desperate a person on the other end of a phone call sounds, you need to protect yourself.

Meeting Spiritual Needs in Long Term Care Settings


Many skilled nursing facilities, such as Advent Christian Village’s Good Samaritan Center, employ a chaplain.

Thrilled to be at ACV


When Neil and Carol Johnson decided to start looking for a retirement community — a place they could spend the rest of their lives, they were living in Levy County, Florida.

ACV, a Family Affair


Advent Christian Village is just that: a village. Those who live here join together daily, eating together, exercising together, shopping together, volunteering together, and worshiping together.

An Apple a Day


Loss of appetite and changes in eating can be a natural part of aging, but it is not necessarily natural or healthy for seniors to lose their appetites.

Who Should Get the Shingles Vaccine?


The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices actually recommends that all persons over the age of 60 receive the vaccine, regardless of a remembrance of having chicken pox as a child.

ACV’s Ceramics Ministry to Kids


Since 1983, members of Advent Christian Village have enjoyed the opportunity to participate in ceramics classes at the Village.

Village Celebrates Service-minded 100-year-old


Oct. 25, 1914, in Four Oaks, NC, Vida Mae Hill was born. One hundred years later, approximately 300 members and staff of Advent Christian Village filled ACV’s Rumph Dining Room to celebrate Vida’s 100th birthday.