Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

One thing I love is that people I don’t even know call me. Out of the blue. Just to talk. Can you believe that?

No real agenda, they just want to get to know me… as a person, not as an executive trying to sell them something.

And that’s how it should be with a family owned business like The Willows…easy, casual and personal in a way you don’t often find in business anymore.

In fact, for Assisted Living and Memory Care communities, being family owned is getting more and more rare – as corporations often run a dozen or more communities.

I love that we are family owned. Sure, we have our guidelines, but with requests for important or special things that can make life a little easier or smoother for our residents, I don’t have to run up a corporate ladder and wait weeks for a response. I can call Ben or Mira Daniels (our owners). They always answer and we always come up with a solution together. No long chain of command and no waiting forever.

And you know why? Because this family built this place to put residents first. They had seen firsthand that when a senior community is owned or managed by a big corporation, the residents are too often seen as a number instead of a human being. And their passion to change that and bring the close, personal care back to seniors, is what inspired them to build this place. And it shows! I love that and so do our residents.

So give me a call. At 641 4851672, that’s my personal cell. And let’s get to know each other. Let’s bring back the personal into our lives. Because family matters, and we’re all family at The Willows.

I can’t wait, talk to you soon.

Love,

Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

So many people I’ve talked with over the years have a common misconception about Assisted Living: that it’s unaffordable for most people.

And when I really take a look at the life our residents have, eating at a restaurant every day, having someone on-call for your health needs, doing your laundry and cleaning your apartment. Having a calendar packed with parties and a wide range of social events, having a library, club room and movie theater… I get it. That kind of life seems pretty luxurious when I think about it that way.

But here’s the real truth. Almost everyone I talk to about moving into Assisted Living is so surprised to find out how affordable it actually is.

What causes that misunderstanding then? Well I’ll share it with you.

Too often people forget to take into account all of the monthly expenses that they DON’T HAVE ANYMORE when they join The Willows.

Thousands of dollars of monthly living expenses END when someone moves here. Food, mortgage, transportation, utilities, tv and phone, property taxes, yard maintenance, entertainment, fitness, cleaning…the list goes on and on.

“Well, who pays for these expenses then?” The Willows pays. They are all included in your rent when you move in. Along with the relief of not having to manage all of that anymore and the comfort of having someone at your call with the press of a button if you need anything.

I’ve actually met with seniors who found that it would cost them less to move into The Willows than their current living costs.

So if you have wanted to check out The Willows, or any Assisted Living facility for that matter, don’t let costs scare you. Just give me a call at 641 4851672 and I can walk you through how it works.

Love,

Jennifer Stanley

Executive Director

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

It took me years to find the right balance.

But I did it. And now I get to provide this balance to residents of The Willows. Here is what I mean…

…life is fragile, short. And that means we all should focus on the present moment, instead of the past or things we can’t change. Sometimes all we need is to be reminded of this and bingo, the sunshine of life appears.

As Executive Director of The Willows I am surrounded by what I call “Veterans of Life.” I get to spend my days with these wonderful people who have seen it all, and done it all. Yet these seniors are still so obviously kids inside. Sure, our bodies wear out, but our life doesn’t wear out. Youth and life are always inside of us.

These are the people who have learned to live in the moment, forgive others, not dwell on the past and to give the precious gift of time to others.

And this matches our slogan, “The WillowsLife.” It means a life where we recognize age, but we dwell on the happiness of our inner life. That is The WillowsLife.

Before I let you go, here is a secret. I lost my Grandmother when I was just 10, my Dad at 12 and my Mom at 18. In other words – I was super young. And it took me a long time to get over losing them. But I did, I found the balance.

And now, I see myself as a knight in armor, leading an army of “Veterans of Life” who live right here at The Willows of Marshalltown. And this army displays all of life’s best lessons, every day.

I am Jennifer. Feel free to call me anytime, whether you want a tour or to just visit. I look forward to that and my private number is 641-485-1672.

Love,

Jennifer
The Willows Executive Director

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

I mean, they have seen me working in health care for years now. They know I often work at all hours. But they also know that I love my job and that residents of The Willows are just like our own family.

In fact from time to time they suggest activities, trips or TV shows for our residents. To me that is super cool. “Mom how about this show for your residents…” It just melts my heart.

And my kids totally look forward to returning to The Willows to visit once Covid restrictions are lifted. I mean, it’s like they already know everyone at The Willows because it’s all I talk about when I am at home.

You know, I had worked in Assisted Living and Memory Care for a while before I joined The Willows, and that gave them a taste of Mom being Executive Director. But they’re still kids, and what kid doesn’t revel a bit in the freedom of Mom being away at work unexpectedly? Well, at least mine do.

Here’s another thing about our Willows Family. There are a lot of our residents who would have been great Executive Directors themselves if life had worked out that way. Our residents stop by my office regularly with ideas and suggestions…right down to letting me know about an idea for an outing, or, well if the beef stew was too salty at lunch.

I just love it, all of it. But nothing tops the help my kids give me. They love the Willows Family, and they love the way I love my job. Hmmm, I can’t wait to have them over for dinner and introduce you to them. Won’t that be fun? You betcha..

Love,

Jennifer
The Willows Executive Director

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

To me, cinnamon rolls are way more than just something to eat. They are something to love, something to savor.

Cinnamon rolls stimulate our senses – smell, taste, touch and sight. But they are so much more than just that.

They also give us a feeling of wonder, a feeling of memories of home, of mom and dad and family…all around the table waiting excitedly for the cinnamon rolls.

Just the thought of cinnamon rolls melts our hearts with love, security and everything being right with the world.
Sure, we serve cinnamon rolls at The Willows of Marshalltown. But to us cinnamon rolls are even more than food.

As Executive Director at The Willows I make sure our community lives cinnamon rolls.

I try to make sure that both our staff and our decisions always pass the Cinnamon Roll Test. By that I don’t just mean we always want to do the right thing, but that we want to have people feel just right as well. As though they just came down to a warm kitchen of cinnamon rolls.

Sure, we have many rules and regulations to follow, they are important for safety and proper resident care. And we are always dedicated in following those guidelines and more.

But nothing on that “requirements list” keeps us from also being a Cinnamon Roll community.

Assisted Living. And Memory Care. These are our specialties.

Think of the new life of friends, memories and warmth that your senior Mom or Dad will begin to live when they join us.

It’s the cinnamon roll way of life. And I’m your cinnamon roll leader at our Cinnamon Roll Community.

Do we have room? Yes. And the first step is to call me, any time. Here is my cell 485-1672. Call me, and come take in the cinnamon roll life.

Love,

Jennifer Stanley
Executive Director

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

When I was a little girl growing up, my Mom always gave me lots of choices.

What to wear, what sports to play, what chores, and how clean to keep my room (well, that was not really a choice).

And life is that way. There are lots of choices.

My Mom also taught me that changing your mind was an OK thing. Give something a good try, and if it does not work, try something else. In fact that one was of immense help for me as I danced through high school and college, trying one thing and then another.

In my case there was a time when I was sure I would be a nurse forever. But then I changed my mind and pursued Management, finally getting a Master’s Degree. And now I am lucky to be able to use both of those skills in my job as Executive Director of The Willows.

I can bet you have had similar experiences in your life. Lots of choices, and a few changes mid stream. Call me some time and let’s swap stories. As you know, I love to visit. And my cell is 485-1672. I mean it, call anytime.

And oh yes, what about my headline about Shrimp Scampi for Breakfast? I figured that would get your attention.

Here at The Willows we believe in lots of choices too. And that means a large daily meal menu, not just “meatloaf on Monday.” And on our menu even has shrimp scampi. And, yes, you can even get it for breakfast.

And you know what? Some of our residents have even done that – smiling all the way.

Thanks Mom. Thanks for teaching me that choice is a good thing. What you taught me is at work here at The Willows every single day.

Love,

Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

“I may not remember what we talk about….but I always remember how you make me feel.”

Here is a lesson I have learned for the adult children of parents with memory issues. It’s how your Mom or Dad feels that really matters to them.

Look, memory issues are now an established part of adult life. Memory issues that were once rare, are now common. And they bring adult children sadness and worry.
Why? Because we all remember the time we told Mom or Dad “I will always take care of you.” And now maybe that job has grown too large to do properly. Diet, medication, bathing, proper exercise, movement, and wandering can all become too much for one person to handle.

And yes, this causes guilt, because of the promise we made Mom or Dad years ago.

But here is the thing. Memory issues can quickly outstrip your ability to give Mom or Dad the care they need. And postponing professional care can actually cause more harm.

But your Mom or Dad will always remember how you make them feel. Which is the magical thing that I see happening here at The Willows. Mom or Dad are left feeling wonderful after your visit.

And that guilt you feel? It goes away, because you can see that care is professionally given 24/7, in a nurturing and engaging environment, specially designed for seniors with memory issues, and Mom or Dad are thriving.

On top of that, you can visit Mom or Dad as often as you like. And the love they feel from you during those visits…that is what stays with them. I see it all the time.

One of the most important parts of my job is this comfort I get to bring to families. I’m here to help, call me anytime at 641-485-1672.

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Yet I see it happen all the time.

Folks simply forget they own Long Term Care Insurance.

And that is like discovering a pot of gold under your bed. Let me explain.

Long Term Care Insurance policies are wonderful. They are basically savings accounts for seniors.

When you pay the policy premium, funds are socked away for your use when you choose to move into The Willows.

In fact, right this minute we have many residents at The Willows living comfortably on the funds from their Long Term Care policies. (And many of them weren’t even aware they had this benefit until they called me.)

Now here is the catch: If you don’t use the funds built up in your Long Term Care policy, they usually flow to the insurance company when you pass on. That’s right, they don’t pass to your heirs. You lose them, forever.

I hate to say this, but it is kind of a trap… the trap of struggling to stay home when you could live in comfort at The Willows with the savings you forgot you even had.

Yes, we see many seniors struggling to stay at home, letting their health slide and burdening their adult children. Yet all the while they could have moved into the comfort and friendship of The Willows and paid for all or most of it with their Long Term Care policy.

If all this is ringing a bell, please remember, those funds in your Long Term Care policy are yours – use them to improve the quality of your life today.

And doing that is easy, painless and requires no commitment.

If you have a Long Term Care policy, call me and let’s discuss your situation. I can evaluate the fine print of your policy and we can discuss your options before it’s too late. Call me on my cell 641-485-1672.

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

But fortunately there is a cure.

I am talking about loneliness.

And as we all know, 2020 dished up loneliness in huge portions.

Lately this is the main thing I hear when adult children call me with concern for Mom or Dad.

Loneliness.

And we’re not talking about the kind of loneliness from a weekend or so by yourself. If it goes on long enough loneliness becomes dangerously invisible. And things slip. Diet slips, cleanliness slips, exercise slips…if you can imagine it, it slips when you are lonely.

Yet, here is the thing about loneliness – none of us ever want to admit it. As if it were some sort of character flaw, instead of the universal call for help that loneliness really is.

So when an adult child asks Mom or Dad “How are you doing?” the answer is always “I’m fine.”

Everyone wants to appear strong to their kids, that’s why it’s so important to know when it’s time for you to be strong for your parents. They held your hand through the skinned knees and bruised hopes of childhood. It’s your turn to hold their hand through this new and uncharted territory.

Maybe that means more visits from you, more phone calls from you, more transportation to events or friends they want (need) to see.

Or maybe it is time to consider Assisted Living, where Mom and Dad are as independent as they want to be in their wonderful apartment, only without the loneliness, because friends are always right next door, at meals, at our theatre, exercise class or even the always loved bingo. And you have the safety net of a devoted healthcare staff at hand 24/7 with all their meals and transportation taken care of.

I know, this is personal stuff. Everyone is different. Every Mom, every Dad is different. Let me hold your hand through this process. I’m here to help. My cell 485-1672. Call anytime.

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

Photo of Jennifer Stanley

My Mom did such a good job of making the house I grew up in feel like home.

I don’t know how she did it exactly, but it was there. That homey feeling.

And people tell me we have the same thing at The Willows. A homey feeling.

It’s hard to put a finger on exactly where it comes from. Really, we just try to do things like mom did. We keep our place clean and inviting, we make homestyle meals, we share stories and have fun together. We also have wonderful employees who take the time to make our residents feel cared for and safe. Just like mom did.

Because home is more than a place, it’s a feeling. Something our visitors always mention. I think it would make my Mom proud to know that we have created something like that here.
With the weather warming up, we have had a lot of folks interested in visiting The Willows who are looking for the right Assisted Living or Memory Care community for their loved one.

And you have good choices here in Marshalltown.

I always say one thing to people who are looking: Pick the place that feels the most like home. You can’t go wrong if you do that. I know we do a lot here to make The Willows feel like home for our residents and our staff. But only you know what home feels like to you, and every senior should live somewhere that feels like home to them.

I would love to give you a tour of The Willows to see if we have created a place that feels right for you and your loved one.

Here is my personal cell….call me anytime for a tour or a chat. 641-485-1672.