Smart Moves

You’re ready to simplify your life.  But where do you begin?

Get advice and insider tips from our team of experts on downsizing, selling your home and a making safe, stress-free move.

Please join us Thursday, March 29 at 11AM

Kindly RSVP to 221-7100 by March 22

Best Senior Living: Recreation in the Neighborhood


Live Animal Show at The Cedars

Recreation in the Neighborhoods

By Kimberly Doyon, Director of Life Enrichment

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” –Margaret Mead

The Cedars is at the forefront of an important cultural change, transforming our resident wings into person-centered “neighborhoods.” Recreation therapy plays an important role in this new model.

Neighborhoods are distinct, home-like environments with central dining and activities rooms. Each wing/neighborhood will be staffed by cross-trained clinical and non-clinical staff. This enables our staff to get to know your loved ones personally, which in turn meets their unique needs more successfully.

Because we know that residents in facilities with this culture have better quality of life, we are moving towards a more person-centered approach. And this means we are changing the way we plan, design and implement our daily activities.

Our recreation calendars now focus on more spontaneous programs that are less structured than in the past. The recreation calendars reflect fewer programs because we are going to start having more unplanned, spur-of-the-moment activities on each of our neighborhoods.

We will continue to offer two structured activities a day, for example our music programs, food programs, outings, floral design classes, etc. But the times in between these programs will be for activities that the residents themselves want to do in the moment, such as baking cookies, exercise classes, playing cards, knitting, gardening, and going outside for fresh air. We encourage our residents to tell us what they want to do!

Our main goal is to tailor our daily programs to the needs of the residents on each neighborhood. This will give the residents more choices in their daily recreation.

This transformation will take time, commitment and patience as we change our programs. But we are confident about improving the quality of life for your loved one.

Robert Moody at The Atrium

On Thursday March 8 The Cedars will present Robert Moody, Conductor of the Portland Symphony Orchestra who will discuss his experiences with the PSO and beyond.

Please RSVP by March 1, 2012 to 207-221-7100

Skilled Care at The Cedars: Life Stories

Life in the Neighborhood: Your Life Story Matters

Kim Doyon, Life Enrichment Coordinator at The Cedars

 Life stories recognize the uniqueness of each person. Today the development and use of life stories is one important key to delivering person centered care at The Skilled Care Center. The Cedars staff believes that by placing the resident and their biography at the heart of care, we can better impact quality of life and care for our residents. Life story work is an activity that reviews the past experiences, life events and routines, and creates a biography of the person.  The life story helps us understand the resident and will help to promote relationships and facilitate delivery of care.  Many of our life enrichment activities are based on life stories and what residents deem as important. 

The Cedars asks the family members for help with the development of a life story for each resident.  The Life Enrichment Department provides a thorough life story form to assist them in documenting family demographics, past experiences, likes and dislikes, events and routines.  These life stories will be a foundation for providing spontaneous activities on the Neighborhoods, development of group activities and will be utilized in social activities. 

Everyone has a chronicle of life to tell…and everyone‘s history is rich. We embrace the opportunity to learn more about each residents.  Although the staff receives some of this information while transitioning into The Cedars, there is so much more to learn about our beautiful residents. We ask that families please take the time to connect with the Life Enrichment Department so that they may assist each and everyone with the development of their loved one’s Life Story.  If you have any questions about the value of Life Stories, please contact me at or 207-221-7000 for more information.




Best Independent Living: Heart Healthy Tips

Heart Healthy Tips from Sharon

By Sharon Leddy-Smart, Lifestyle Coordinator at The Atrium, independent living at The Cedars 

The American Heart Association has long appointed February as Heart Healthy Month and Sharon Leddy-Smart, Lifestyle Director and wellness expert, is sharing her tips for staying healthy and happy in 2012. 

  • Eat Right: We all live longer and stronger with a healthy diet.  Be sure to focus on whole grains and fiber; breads, fruits and vegetables are also great options.  And don’t forget your calcium and protein needs by enjoying foods like milk, yogurt, cheese, beans, fish, and eggs.
  • Drink Your Water: The American Medical Association recommends drinking six to eight glasses of water daily, especially with increased fiber intake and exercise.  Keeping our blood and tissues hydrated also helps to lubricate the joints and moisten the lungs to allow for healthy breathing, which all contributes to slowing down the effects of aging.
  • Get plenty of sleep: Seniors should get at least eight hours of sleep per night.  To ensure a good night’s sleep, get enough exercise and avoid caffeine in the afternoon.  As we age, seniors don’t spend as much time in deep sleep.  If you’re having trouble falling or staying asleep, be sure to see your doctor.
  • Exercise: Generally, seniors should exercise at least three times per week, for 30 to 45 minute sessions. Sharon recommends gentle to moderate activity such as walking in and around our community, taking classes at our FitnessCenter, swimming and participating in water aerobics, or enjoying one of our Tai Chi or Yoga classes.
  • Socialize: Be sure to get out and about with friends and family, or sign up to volunteer at one of the many opportunities in Portland or at The Cedars.  The Experience Corps Program of Baltimore conducted a study on participation which indicate that seniors who volunteer experience advantages in mental and physical functioning such as a lower risk of depression, less decline in health due to aging, and improvements in memory.  Time spent with others can help us stay happy and healthy. 

If you have any questions, or would like more information on any of the above, contact Sharon today at 207-221-7100.



Best Senior Care: Skilled Nursing Care at The Cedars

The staff and management at The Cedars have a constant eye towards providing excellent care in a compassionate environment.  Making this commitment to ourselves and the community requires continual insight and self-evaluation.  For the past ten years, The Cedars has held an annual Family Forum which brings together the families and friends of our Skilled Care residents.  The Forum creates the opportunity for us to hear from our family members what is working well for their loved ones and where we can make improvements.  

The general topics of discussion stem from results of a survey that are sent to residents and families in advance of the event.  Through thoughtful design, we ensure that the Forum facilitators create an open and encouraging atmosphere for discussion.  The feedback and suggestions we receive are highly valued and ultimately incorporated into our planning processes and program development. 

This year, follow up meetings with the family members are being held in each of our Neighborhoods.  That way, we can more clearly focus our concentrations on the specific needs and desires of the residents who are living within the same intimate community.  In addition, the direct care staff is able to respond and provide input to program changes.  

Let us know if you would like to learn more about The Cedars and our unique approach to senior care.

Retirement Living in Maine: Winter Comfort Foods

Dining at The Atrium at The Cedars

The Atrium’s chef Heath Pollard enjoys preparing a variety of nutritious and delicious dishes for the members of our independent living community.  During the winter months he receives several requests for his satisfying comfort foods.  Here is Heath’s recipe for Macaroni and Cheese – which is a favorite dish for our members during the colder months in Maine!

The Atrium’s Macaroni and Cheese: 

For the Topping:

  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 2 cups coarse fresh bread crumbs
  • 1 ½ cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

For the Macaroni and Sauce:

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 5 cups whole milk
  • 6 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni

Preheat oven to 400°F

Melt butter, then combine with bread crumbs and topping cheeses in a bowl

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir in flour. Cook the mixture, for 3 minutes, stirring constantly, then whisk in milk. Bring sauce to a boil, whisking constantly, then simmer, whisking occasionally, for 3 minutes. Stir in the cheeses, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper until smooth. Remove from heat and cover surface of sauce.

Make Macaroni:
Cook macaroni in a pasta pot of boiling salted water  until al dente. Reserve 1 cup cooking water and drain macaroni. Stir together macaroni, reserved cooking water, and sauce in a large bowl. Transfer to 2 buttered 2-quart shallow baking dishes.

Sprinkle topping evenly over macaroni and bake until golden and bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes.


Winter Open House at The Cedars 

Thursday February 16, 2012 from 2PM to 5PM

Please join us at The Atrium for tours of the community, good company and delicious treats prepared by our chef.

 For more information call 207-221-7100

Best Retirement Community: Yoga at The Cedars

Jessica McKneally

Jessica McKneally, yoga instructor at The Cedars

Posted by Sharon Leddy-Smart, Lifestyle Coordinator at The Atrium, independent living at The Cedars.


That’s where Jessica McKneally, BA, RYT, yoga instructor for The Cedars, begins her chair yoga class each week. Her students find their chairs and begin to stretch their bodies, focus their minds and find their centers. During the long Maine winters, yoga in the sunlight is a deep breath of fresh air.

Yoga classes designed especially for seniors are just one of the many holistic wellness options available to The Cedars community. All winter long, members of The Atrium and The Osher Inn practice tai chi, work out in the gym or in water aerobics and swam laps in the pool. Patients in The Sam L. Cohen Rehabilitation Center gain strength and mobility through therapeutic exercises in the spacious, sunny therapy gym. Delicious, heart-healthy menu choices, wellness lectures and round-the-clock access to medical care are just some of the ways The Cedars helps all our members, patients and residents care for their physical well being.

But wellness is more than physical — it is mental, and spiritual. “Many of the chronic ailments associated with the aging process are the result of stress, imbalance and disconnection,” explains Jessica. “Relieving stress, cultivating balance in our lives and reconnecting to our self and others can go a long way towards establishing a healthier, happier, more sustainable life.”

Monthly calendars packed with cultural, social and spiritual activities keep members of The Cedars community vibrant and connected. For the most important aspect of wellness is community — rich lives shared with good friends. This is one of the reasons why Jessica will end this yoga session by instructing her students to simply laugh, as hard as they can.

As giggles turn into rollicking bouts of laughter, everyone in the room is completely relaxed, totally renewed and feeling great. Namaste.

Best Senior Living Community – Kathy Callnan

Kathy Callnan - CEO at The CedarsPosted by Kathryn Callnan, President and CEO at The Cedars, Southern Maine’s premier retirement community.

I have been reflecting on my thirty-plus years with this wonderful organization. I came to The Cedars as a nurse, and I still believe that the compassion and comfort we offer Maine’s seniors and their families is still our greatest strength.

I am so proud of our rich history, the wide range of living choices we provide as well as the quality of care and service for which we continue to be celebrated today. There is no place in all of Maine like The Cedars. We set the standard in senior living choices.

As a nonprofit, mission-driven organization, we are constantly confronted with the harsh realities of today’s fiscal climate. More and more, we are forced to make difficult choices between our well intentioned aspirations and the rapidly growing costs of maintaining basic services for our seniors as they age.

And so we depend on you, our community, to help us bridge that gap. As we have come to you with plans for innovations in care and investments in wellness, you have provided us the critical resources we need. Most recently, you have stepped up to the challenge of providing a personalized assisted living residence that completes our “circle of care”. The 2008 opening of The Osher Inn achieved a goal we have held for many years — but that could not have been realized without community-wide help.

And so whether you are a senior considering an independent lifestyle at The Atrium or healing at The Sam L. Cohen Rehabilitation Center, or you are struggling with difficult choices facing an aging parent or loved one who may require assisted living at The Osher Inn or services at the Skilled Care Center, The Cedars will always be there for you. I invite you to take a tour of our lovely campus and see for yourself. The Cedars is truly your community.