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– Vince Giordano


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5 tips for downsizing for seniors 

July 10, 2024

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            [post_content] => The prospect of leaving a space where memories and family get-togethers happened, all while leaving behind belongings can be daunting and overwhelming. But moving into a new space that fits your goals—often while solving issues like home maintenance and landscaping—is worth the work. Ready to make a change and not sure where to start? Learn some of tips and advice for downsizing, from experts and seniors who have made the move. 

Choose your new destination 

The first essential step is finding your new home, and knowing how much space you will have. Senior Real Estate Specialist Kim Rickert from Perry Wellington Realty specializes in downsizing. She says that it is essential to find a spot that will suit your current and future needs. “People need to ask themselves if they have any healthcare issues that require them to be closer to medical facilities. Does the new space have an open layout with a bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen all on one level? Will higher utility bills, HOAs, property taxes or maintenance costs add unexpected expense? Once that is determined, you can move on to downsizing your current home.” 

Take measurements and decide what is being moved 

When Dolores Metzler and her husband moved from a three-bedroom house to a 1,100 sq. foot residential living cottage at Valley View Village, she had to take a hard look at their belongings. “I did not want to overcrowd or clutter the smaller house since we downsized 50% of square footage,” she said. “Throughout the process, it was helpful to remember that it was a positive and good transition.” 

Choose what to keep 

Metzler sorted all of their belongings into three key categories: keep, donate, and throw away. She started with key pieces of favorite furniture to fill each room of her new home. “For example, we decided to take one bookcase, so I totally emptied it before filling it with only our top favorite books. Once furniture pieces were filled, I knew it was time to purge some more.”  

Pay it forward with donations 

Metzler took photos of heirlooms and sent them to her family, but found that her offspring did not have the deep attachment to antiques that she did. She said that as she gave away meaningful things, she took a minute to recall the memory, wrote it down, and then passed it along. “Interestingly, once something is out of sight, I have rarely missed it,” she said. After giving away things to family and friends, they held a yard sale, then donated to their favorite thrift shop. 

Let it go: top things to discard 

This is often the hardest thing to do. Start in a room where the least items are stored, and throw away anything cracked, broken, or deteriorated. Items like plastic and paper grocery bags, stained clothing or linens, and anything expired should be thrown away instead of donated.   “None of downsizing is easy, but it is absolutely necessary,” retired teacher Lorraine Bingman said, after moving into a skilled nursing room at Valley View Haven. “Perhaps the most difficult part of it is the mental aspect of change. Learning to grow where you are planted can make life a joy.”      [post_title] => 5 tips for downsizing for seniors  [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => 5-tips-for-downsizing-for-seniors [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2024-07-10 15:12:38 [post_modified_gmt] => 2024-07-10 15:12:38 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 886 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2024-06-04 13:04:48 [post_date_gmt] => 2024-06-04 13:04:48 [post_content] => UPDATE: Due to the extreme heat predicted for Saturday, we have decided to move The Longest Day Walk inside Valley View Retirement Community. Registration will take place inside the Rehab entrance, with opening ceremonies in the chapel at 10 AM. After the opening, the walk will proceed on a route throughout the Valley View Haven and Terrace. The walk will end back in the chapel, where participants can enjoy live music, popcorn and ice cream, along with other activities and fellowship. While this was not our original plan, we want to use an abundance of caution to ensure that the walk is comfortable and safe for our residents, volunteers, and other participants. With the new route, there is an opportunity to engage with even more residents and uniquely support the walk's mission.  -- On Saturday, June 22, Valley View Retirement Community is hosting a fundraising walk for The Longest Day to outshine the darkness of Alzheimer’s Disease. Come walk through Valley View’s campus along with residents and other participants to raise awareness for those in our community who suffer from Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias. The event can be walked, run, or biked, in part or in full. With a suggested donation of $20, participants will receive a T-shirt. Free water, popcorn, and raspberry ice cream will be given out at the event. All donations go directly towards advancing the care, support and research efforts of the Alzheimer's Association®. During summer solstice—the time of year with the most light—Valley View is standing up to fight the darkness of memory loss and shining a light on hope and compassion for community members who are living with the disease. Help us paint Mifflin County purple, and walk with us during The Longest Day! To find out more about The Longest Day, and how to get involved, go to You can find more information about volunteering here.  [post_title] => Join Valley View for the Longest Day Walk! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => thelongestday [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2024-06-20 18:34:31 [post_modified_gmt] => 2024-06-20 18:34:31 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 880 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2024-05-29 13:30:09 [post_date_gmt] => 2024-05-29 13:30:09 [post_content] => Marie Brigante was the primary caregiver for her mother when she started thinking about volunteering at Valley View. “During the few occasions when she needed in-house rehab, I was so impressed with the compassionate care that she received. That planted the seed to want to volunteer here,” she says.  A lifelong resident of Morristown, New Jersey, Brigante discovered Valley View while visiting her sister, who lives in Belleville. When it came time to retire from working as a speech pathologist for 29 years, she and her mother decided to live in a cottage together in Valley View Village.  “My wonderful mom and I were very happy moving here,” she says. And when Connie passed away at age 97, Marie suddenly found that she had time to fill. “Our CEO Nicole Sarver heard that I was interested in volunteering and talked to me about some of the opportunities here,” she remembers. “I am so thrilled that she did! After thinking about the different places where I could serve, I thought that Memory Lane would be a good fit and a good way to honor my mom.” In the two years she has served, she says that she is so happy with her decision. “I love the residents and look forward to seeing them every week. Memory Lane is a busy place with many activities happening throughout the day. Drex Treaster, Director of Memory Lane, and the dedicated staff create an atmosphere where all voices are heard and everyone is treated with dignity and respect.” One of her favorite memories is of the Longest Day event — an event recognizing Alzheimer’s Research that takes place on the longest day of the year, June 21. (In 2024, the event takes place on Saturday, June 22.) “It was awesome seeing so many of our Memory Lane residents participating,” she says. “It was a sea of purple T-shirts and balloons. The local paper and radio station interviewed participants and many volunteers, both family members and members of the community, were on hand to help make the day a success.”  She encourages others to volunteer. “There is great joy in serving. It has enriched my life in more ways than I thought possible. Whatever contribution I make, I get back ten-fold. Plus, it’s not a huge time commitment — it fits nicely into a schedule. Having the opportunity to make someone’s life just a little better is so worthwhile.” “Volunteering at Valley View lets me give back in some small way to a community that I care deeply about. Moving to this beautiful campus four years ago was one of the best decisions I ever made. I am especially impressed by an administration that cares about villagers’ opinions and concerns. Valley View is a great place to live and volunteer.”  To find out more about The Longest Day, and how to get involved, go to You can find more information about volunteering here.  [post_title] => Volunteering has enriched my life in more ways than I thought possible [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => volunteering-has-enriched-my-life-in-more-ways-than-i-thought-possible [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2024-05-29 13:51:53 [post_modified_gmt] => 2024-05-29 13:51:53 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 862 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2024-04-10 13:30:18 [post_date_gmt] => 2024-04-10 13:30:18 [post_content] =>   There’s a new face on Valley View’s Campus Services team, the group that oversees maintenance, snow removal, repairs, and keeping our physical plant running smoothly across the Haven, Memory Lane, the Terrace, and cottages in the Village. Kale Stimely is a senior at Mifflin County High School and is studying electrical installation at Mifflin County Academy of Science and Technology.  “I started out at another company this year,” Kale said, ”But I wasn’t getting the hours that I needed to be able graduate.” As part of the program’s work-study program, students have classes in the morning and then work at a business to gain real-life experience. When his initial placement didn’t fit, his teacher reached out to Mike Minium, Director of Campus Services at Valley View.  When Kale interviewed for the job, Mike told him that the position would be more than just electrical installation that he was studying at the Academy. Kale quickly realized that was a huge understatement.  “I’ve learned how to repair drywall, do masonry, cove base, build a fireplace, install a sink, and do a total renovation of a team breakroom,” he counts off on his fingers. “I’ve learned so much.” Beyond hard skills, he is learning soft skills like communication, teamwork, and adaptability. And he’s discovering that he really enjoys watching residents’ faces light up when they see him come into a room. “I love getting the smiles and ‘hi’s’,” he says.  “There’s a lot of stuff that goes into running a retirement community,” he says. “I never realized how much maintenance work would go into keeping this kind of campus running smoothly. The team does a lot of work behind the scenes.” His favorite thing? “Getting to work with Mike,” he says without hesitation. “He’s very, very smart and he has so much experience. He’s not super formal or set in his ways, and I’ve learned a lot from him.” Soon, Kale will be graduating with his diploma and several hundred hours of experience in electrical work, drywall installation, HVAC, and plumbing. He’s heading to Pennsylvania College of Technology for more training in automation engineering. He says that what he’s learned at Valley View will help him throughout his life. “When something goes wrong in my future house, I don’t to have to call someone to do it.” But before he goes, he has some advice for upcoming students as they choose their work-study program. “Definitely come to Valley View. You will improve your people skills, and it’s a great work atmosphere. You will learn a lot about an incredible diversity of things.” [post_title] => Student finds the perfect spot for his work study: "Definitely pick Valley View" [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => student-finds-the-perfect-spot-for-his-work-study-definitely-pick-valley-view [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2024-04-10 14:06:55 [post_modified_gmt] => 2024-04-10 14:06:55 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) )
Join Valley View for the Longest Day Walk!

June 4, 2024

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Volunteering has enriched my life in more ways than I thought possible

May 29, 2024

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Student finds the perfect spot for his work study: “Definitely pick Valley View”

April 10, 2024

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