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Couple with different care needs finds one place to call home

By: Country Meadows |

Nicholas and Elaine Noel will feel like they’re at home with family when they move to Country Meadows of Forks in Easton. The country setting, just a short walk from their granddaughter’s home, is one of the features their son, Nick Noel, is sure they will enjoy. He is happy that the couple found a new home where they can stay together, even as their health needs change.

Ten years ago, as the Noels approached their eighties, the couple sold their home of 40 years, and moved into an independent living facility near Philadelphia. The retired high school teachers enjoyed their active lifestyle, but as their health and physical abilities changed, navigating the sprawling facility became difficult. Mr. Noel was beginning to have issues with memory, and they were becoming more comfortable staying in their apartment than joining others for meals and activities.

Living 90 minutes away, Nick Noel is the couple’s nearest family member. He grew concerned that his parents needed more support, and approached them about finding a new home closer to family.

His search of options in Reading and the Lehigh Valley led him to Country Meadows of Forks in Easton, PA, built just about 1,000 feet from his daughter’s home. Looking at pictures, Noel liked the building’s appearance and the “homey” apartments. He was impressed by the activities, services and overall operation of Country Meadows, and appreciated the floor plan with a centralized activity area and dining room that would be easy for his parents to access.

Nicholas and Elaine Noel, right, enjoy time with their son Nick granddaughter and great-grandchildren. (Photo submitted.)

Over the winter, while the campus was still under construction, Marketing Director Terry Weber invited Noel and his parents to have lunch at nearby Country Meadows of Bethlehem. They took a tour, and got a feel for the community and types of services it had to offer.

“Everyone was very welcoming and put my parents at ease,” says Noel.” They liked what they saw and felt very comfortable. There was no hard sell, just ‘this is what you can expect if you choose to come here.’”

They also appreciated the memory support programs, which Noel’s father will have access to at the Forks campus. A leader in providing care for those with memory loss caused by Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia, Country Meadows has developed a unique approach to memory care that focuses on building bonds and caring for the whole person. Through the Connections Memory Support programs, Mr. Noel can have personalized support and the opportunity to participate in activities and exercises designed to match his needs and interests. Mrs. Noel, who doesn’t need the same support, can spend time with her husband and also engage in activities that specifically interest her.

The couple was pleased to see that Country Meadows met their needs and budget. To help with moving to a new region, Country Meadows provided the Noel family with information about nearby healthcare providers so they can get records transferred and be ready to go with good medical care.

Noel says it’s reassuring to know that if his father’s memory issues progress, his parents will be able to stay together and, if needed, can move into the secure Memory Care Neighborhood on the same campus. In the event skilled nursing is needed, those services are available at the nearby Bethlehem campus.

“It’s a relief. Regardless of what stage of life you are in, moving is not something anyone wants to do,” says Noel. “It’s comforting to know that there won’t be any more major upheavals.”

Noel looks forward to helping his parents move in, and having the assurance that they’ll receive the support they need. He thinks they will enjoy the beautiful setting and be more inclined to socialize, noting that his mother, who taught world cultures and history, will enjoy meeting new friends for weekly political discussions. With their granddaughter and great-grandchildren nearby, Mr. and Mrs. Noel can look forward to many visits with family, too.

He concludes, “Everything is much more compact with this design; it’s not going to be an ordeal for them to leave their apartment to get to the dining room or other activities. It is a comfort.”

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