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Monthly Archives: April 2015


For Earth Day, we created a whole campaign, starting the previous week.  We asked all residents to go through their clothes, pick out what they don’t wear or need, and donate them to the Goodwill. Here we have Irene, Shirley, Joan and Rose manning the donation box.  Didn’t they do a great job on the sign!  And, talk about everyone pitching in… we had enough donations to fill the box three times over.  Jonathan gave the most, starting with that silly brown jacket with elbow patches.  He looks like a professor in it, well, make that a retired professor with no where to go.  He looks better without it… we thought we’d never be able to get him to part with it.  And, Rose pitched in by donating a huge stack of clothes, saying that her closet was way too full and she’d rather recycle and help someone else. So, there you have it.  HVE had quite a showing on this Earth Day.



Ah Ha!  Today was “Pasta Wednesday.”  I had been waiting all week for it.  And, it’s especially welcome coming off 8 days of Matzoh.  First off, we started the festivities with a Scrabble tournament after lunch.  We had 10 Boards all across the Dining room… all ready for everyone wanting to play.  We encouraged at least four players per board, sometimes more, sometimes less.   Each team had 1 hour to play, with the winner competing with the winners of the other teams.  The final two would get the grand prizes.  The name of the event was FUN.  George was the grand prize winner, receiving a $20 gift certificate to Pottery Barn, and Emma won 2nd place with a $15 gift certificate to See’s Candies.  Afterwards, many of us retreated to our rooms to wait for the big event of the night… PASTA.  Others watched TV for a while.  Me… I went outside with the paper to soak in the Ocean breeze.  By 5:00pm, we were all sitting in the dining room, mouths watering for a great treat.  Cheese Lasagna, Pasta Alfredo, pasta with meat sauce, Pasta Primavera, pasta with pesto sauce.  Pasta in all shapes and sizes.  It was quite fun and all so delicious.  Chef outdid himself!  We also had chopped vegetable salad and Neopolitan ice cream with little sugar cookies.  Well worth the wait!  After dinner we retreated to the living room/entertainment room to watch TV, chat and end the night with a cup of hot chocolate.  Then, time for me to relax and have some quiet time in my own room–lots of good programs on Wednesdays, one of which is Modern Family.  I really like that show.  What an enjoyable day.


Easter…  what a fun holiday.  Yes, in all seriousness, it’s the day of Resurrection and one of the most serious holidays on the Christian calendar.  Accordingly, many of our residents fired up the shuttle and took a morning outing for church services.  However, when they returned, it was fun time!  We had a good old fashioned egg hunt, well make that two.  Yesterday, the kitchen staff fired up the stove and created a TON of Easter eggs of all colors.  It was a pretty rainbow to view.  Then, come this morning, a few of the day staff hid the eggs.  Far and wide, high and low.  The first one was for our grandchildren.  They came over and searched the place, in and out–with the one rule of only “low.”  They couldn’t search any higher than four feet off the ground.  It was a delight to watch all the little ones scurring about behind every plan, in bookcases–but only the bottom shelves!  Benjamin, Lilly’s 8 year-old, great-grandson, won 1st place with 35 eggs.  He got a giant chocolate bunny and a Disney DVD.  Mirim’s 5 year-old granddaughter, Rose,  was 2nd runner up with 20 eggs… a valiant effort.  She won a pretty little basket filled with a large chocolate bunny and chocolate eggs.  Rose was so thrilled.  After we had the fun with the kids, it was our turn.  And, that involved “high.”  Many of us participated, and some just watched from the sidelines, laughing away.  But, when anyone sat down in a chair or bench, they had to make sure there weren’t any eggs tucked in the back.  Otherwise, “squish,” followed by a scream of delight.  Lily took after her great-granddaughter by winning with 15 eggs.  She won a pretty scarf.  And, 2nd runner up was Nicolas with 10 eggs, winning a $5 gift certificate to Starbucks.  We took all the eggs that were left and placed them on the dining room tables.  They were nice decorations as we ate our Easter dinner.  Deviled eggs, honey-baked ham, chicken, green beans with almonds, mashed potatoes, rolls and matzoh for those observing Passover, fresh strawberries and grapes, and the finale… a great big Easter cake.  White with white icing and decorated like a bunny rabbit with little chocolate eggs all over.  How cute!  And, again, for those celebrating Passover, little chocolate-almond macaroons.  Equally delicious!  And, another day ended on a very full stomach, filled with friends and family and good times.  One thing about Holiday Villa East.  You’ll never be bored here!

egg hunt joan & lillian jean egg hunt Joan egg hunt basket kiesha egg hunt#1 group pic egg hunt kiesha egg hunt


This year, Passover began on the same day as Good Friday.  However, out of deference to our friends, we chose to have our Sedar this evening, the second night of Passover.  Passover is an interesting holiday.  It lasts eight days, commemorating the emancipation of the Israelites from slavery in ancient Egypt.

The Sedar is a dinner that lasts a couple of hours.  Depending on the Rabbi officiating the ceremony.  Tonight, we had Rabbi Ellen Golden help lead the way.  The Sedar involves three parts: 1) reciting the Haggadah,  the story of the Exodus; 2) eating the symbolic matzoh, bitter herbs, and hard-boiled eggs; and 3) my favorite part: drinking four cups of wine (or grape juice).  Rabbi read parts of the Haggadah, and each of us took a turn with passages as well.  Dinner gets a bit long, but the wine certainly helps, at least for those of us partaking.   We all sat in tables along the walls, and, then, we had a kiddie table for those grandchildren who came by.  That way, they could squirm and make funny faces at each other, while sneaking matzoh and sips of grape juice at the wrong times.  After dinner, we have a tradition of playing a game, essentially, “Hiding the Matzoh.”  The children seek and the one who finds wins a brand-new $5 bill.  Margaret’s eight-year old granddaughter, Taylor won.  Boy was she excited.  And, so was I to be finished.  But seriously, it was a very enjoyable evening.  Chef made a great meal.  Gefilte fish, chicken soup with matzoh balls, briscit, chicken, roasted potatoes and potato kugel, and roasted vegies.  And, the dessert.  Coconut macaroons dipped in chocolate, and some tarts filled with apple and other fruits.  We all stuffed ourselves royally.  Now, this was the way to start the holiday.  Afterwards, Jess and I decided to take a leisurely stroll around the front of the building, then wandered into the parlor where some were watching television, and sat with a cup of hot chocolate.  It was a relaxful way to end the day.

passover table#2






Passover#6passover #5


Good Friday, also known as “Holy Friday,” is the Friday immediately preceding Easter Sunday. It is celebrated by Christians worldwide as the day on which Jesus was crucified.  For many of us in the Community, it was a day of reflection.  And, what better way to do so than with our friends and family–both here and “abroad.”  We just lulled around the grounds, inside and out.  Some of us went to services at a nearby church, and others, like myself, grabbed a chair outside on the patio with a good book.  It was a nice, peaceful day.