Darlene turned 100 years old at the end of February. In Spring of 2015, Darlene’s daughter called and asked if she needed to make or buy a cake for the birthday that was almost an entire year away. Manager Chelsey said, Absolutely not! Courtyard Estates would cover it as we will throw her a great birthday party! As the day approached, a Universal Worker took it upon herself to plan the party and purchase supplies needed for it along with Darlene’s gifts from the Community. She insisted on buying her a shirt that said “100 and Fabulous” which she wore on her special day, a picture frame that all the residents and staff signed for her that a photo from her special day was put in and hung in her apartment, a beautiful bouquet of flowers and balloons, a delicious cake, and even had the other residents help make her a tie blanket for her afternoon naps.
Many family members attended this party and even our housekeeper’s husband agreed to do live music for the event so everyone could dance. The Birthday girl was sat front and center with all her family from her daughter to her grandchildren to her great grandchildren. The day started with a speech by Manager Chelsey, followed by a special song “Walking My Baby Back Home” that her husband and her used to dance to, followed by cake and music and dancing. Everyone had such a special time! The CYE staff shared the news of the 100th birthday, asking people to send birthday cards wishing Darlene a happy 100th birthday. Birthday cards were delivered for about 2 weeks after the fact and she received over 20 birthday cards from random people she’d never met before. This is something Darlene may forget due to her dementia, but her blood family and her Courtyard Estates family will never forget!