What would you say when asked what your 3 Guiding Words are?

This week, we have had the pleasure of hosting 70 of our team leaders here at Welcome Home for our Winter Conference.

Yesterday, we had a wonderful beginning session with a friend of ours, Steve Gasser. Steve is one of my friends and is an inspiration to me in many ways.  I invited Steve to come and speak to our group about the 3 Guiding Words, a program I started working through after being introduced to it by Steve and a few friends two years ago.  My personal guiding words are my replacement for a new year’s resolution. Over the past two years, I’ve participated in a group that did this exercise from a personal level, and I thought this would be a great exercise for our team to do as well.

Steve walked the group through one of the more fascinating and impactful sessions we’ve ever had at our conferences.  All throughout yesterday, team members continued to approach me and told me how his session was maybe one of the best they had ever heard.

That’s pretty high praise, but you know what?  It really was.

At the end of yesterday’s session, Steve asked our team leaders to do this exercise for themselves.  We heard a few of the words, and to say we were impressed was an understatement.

We decided to take it one step further and have our friend, Lena Mowlem, take the words and write them in to a story that would be just as impactful for them.

This morning, Lena came and read the interpretation of their words.  What follows comes from our team members 3 Guiding Words.

This year I will take action.

I will be adventurous and


I will motivate and be


I will experiment and create,

challenge and support.

I will encourage quality

success and step out of my

shell with confidence.

I will rejuvenate, relax and

have fun.

I will enjoy life and share

kindness and joy.

I will give generously and


I will connect with my

community and embrace it

with understanding.

I will believe in

belongingness and charity,

dependability and continuity.

I will have patience.

I will communicate, plan and


I will simplify and eliminate,

practice self control and step


I will present balance and

practicality, thriftiness and


I will slow down and practice


I will move, and focus on

health and fitness.

I will enjoy the outdoors, ride,

embrace a healthy lifestyle,

and inspire growth.

I know I can achieve these

new accomplishments.

I will be social, and commit

the time and tools to do so.

I will live, laugh, learn,


I will thrive on trust and truth,

and find strength in my faith

and family.

I will love more, believe

more, respect more, please

more with a genuine passion.

I will create new memories

and be fulfilled by the ones I

already have.

I will cherish bravery and

peace and honor me.

I will dream.

Want to talk about inspirational?  Thoughtful? Amazing?

Yeah, we thought so too.

We may be biased, but we really believe we have the best team members out there.  This has been one of the most amazing groups of people to work with.  Each of them care in a way that should set the standard of care for senior living communities.  We are proud to call them a part of our team and in many ways, a part of our family.  Thank you to our team for all that they do, day in and day out.  Your work is inspiring to us and is very much appreciated by the residents you care for, and by their families who have chosen you to care for their loved one.

Roman Bloemke, Chief Operations Officer, Welcome Home Management Company.

Woodstone of Rice Lake wins local award

Memory care Staff awardWoodstone Senior Living of Rice Lake, WI was recently awarded the Sunshine Award from WEAU TV 13 in Eau Claire, WI on Wednesday January 28th, 2015.

The Sunshine Awards began in 1985 as a way for WEAU viewers to publicly thank others for acts of kindness and good deeds. Our devoted staff works tireless hours without even looking for a thank you.

They all have hearts of gold that are willing to help in a moment’s notice. The staff looks at all of the residents as their parent or grandparent.

The management team of Woodstone expresses our sincere gratitude and thanks to the staff for all of their hard work and dedication to their Woodstone Family, without each and every one of you the residents would be lost and wouldn’t have someone to help them meet their daily needs!

We asked a few of our staff to why they love working here?

Lauren, a care provider in in our memory care community said “The residents make sure to keep my life full of positive energy”.

Another care provider, Morgan K. states:  “I love working at Woodstone because I find it rewarding, it puts a smile on my face, and even when I’m having a bad day the residents can make my day so much better.”

Cassie T., says “I love working at Woodstone because the residents I work for have me leaving every day with a smile whether it’s because I got a hug or a smile while telling them goodbye for the day or a coworker helping me with a task that needs to be done before going home. The residents and staff are my reasons for loving this job.”

Jen K. says “I worked retail my entire life so this was a huge change for me, I love working with theses residents they are an amazing group of people.”

What does this job mean to you?

“The job means everything to me, it is a very important job and I put everything into it. When I’m on the clock the residents deserve my full and undivided attention, when I am working and that is what I do when I work.” Morgan stated.

“My job has a purpose and it’s to make sure the residents are taken care of and knowing that they are healthy and happy makes me happy.” Lauren says.

“I was really struggling with where I wanted to work after my last job this has been such a rewarding job to have, heartbreaking at times but still very meaningful.” Jen says

“This job means a lot to me. I love knowing every day that I come in to work that I am making a positive difference in my resident’s life.” Cassie

What does this award meant to you?

“I’m so honored to know people appreciate the hard work that the memory care staff deals with every day.” From Lead Care Manager Lauren.

Care Provider Morgan states, “this award makes me feel really good that I can help make someone happy and cheer someone up. It is very important to leave your problems at the door and put a smile on your face to cheer people up and make them happy.”

Care Provider Cassie says “This award means a lot to me. It show appreciation for what we do
every day. It shows that people really do appreciate what we do and how hard we all work. It’s
good knowing how much people trust us to care for their loved ones.”

Care Provider Jen says, “Very grateful to the families of the residents”

What do the residents mean to you?

“The residents mean so much to me and that’s why I do this job. They come first and they
make the job rewarding. The stories they tell and the smiles they can put on my face even in
the frustrating moments is the most important part of the job for me. The residents is why I
enjoy this job so much!!” Morgan.

“We are a big family, they fill a huge spot in my heart!!” Lauren.
“All of them are special in their own way, I love working with all of them they have become a
very important part of my life” Jen

“The residents mean so much to me each and every one of them are like a part of my family.
While working with the same people every day and getting to know them on such a close,
personal level they become a part of your life.” Cassie

Woodstone Senior Living is grateful for all the love and support we receive from our residents
families and support groups. We all do our jobs to make sure your family member’s needs are
met every day!!

Woodstone Senior Living where lasting memories are made every day!!

Woodstone of Hutchinson gives out their first “Outstanding” Award

Starting in January, Woodstone started an Outstanding Award Program to recognize individuals for their outstanding effort and job well done in helping make this Senior Community a great place to live. Meet our kitchen staff, all who have been nominated as a whole for their passion to make wonderful food for our resident’s here at Woodstone.

Jerry and Carol Notch, family of Teckla Notch, nominated the whole Kitchen Staff for their job well done. “We have had guests several times and everyone is always impressed,” said Carol Notch. On January 3rd, The Notch family had 5 guests that they brought to Woodstone to eat with their loved one and everyone was served a delicious meal very efficiently, and it appeared, without any stress. “The meals, as always are awesome and very plentiful and the accommodations are very homey” stated Jerry & Carol Notch.

Pictured from left to right: Tanya Jacobs FSD, Autumn Chida, Kathy Trimbo, Kristin Hamilton Back Row: Brenda Benson, Abby Meade, Patty Borchardt

Pictured from left to right:
Tanya Jacobs FSD, Autumn Chida, Kathy Trimbo, Kristin Hamilton
Back Row: Brenda Benson, Abby Meade, Patty Borchardt

The kitchen staff is led by the Food Service Director Tanya Jacobs. Tanya has been with Woodstone since October, 2014 and enjoys riding motorcycles and spending time with family and friends any chance she can get. Tanya is very excited to lead the kitchen staff here at Woodstone and provide wonderful healthy food to not only our residents, but their guests as well.

Patty Borchardt has been with Woodstone the longest since June, 2014. Patty is a great team player in the kitchen and recently has won the “Grace under Pressure” award at the 2014 Holiday Party. Patty’s willingness to help out can stretch out for miles. When she isn’t in the kitchen here at Woodstone, you can bet you could find Patty enjoying time outside and shopping with her daughter.

The rest of the staff may be newer to Woodstone, but they are a great addition to the team. They all bring lots of experience to the kitchen and making the food experience for our community here at Woodstone top notch.

If you would like to nominate any staff that you have seen going above and beyond and you would like them to know they are doing a great job, please nominate those individuals for our next monthly award. Nomination sheets are located in the Woodstone staff office.

Welcome to the Team!

Over the past few weeks, two of our properties have seen new faces join our team.


Jill Wenzel takes over as the new Executive Director/RN at Woodstone Senior Living in New Ulm, Minnesota.  Born and raised in North Dakota, Jill moved the the New Ulm community about 9 years ago.  In her previous positions, she was an RN at the Sleepy Eye Medical Center, and most recently as the Executive Director of the Brown County Evaluation Center.

“I love older adults and am very excited about my new position here at Woodstone!”  Jill said when interviewed for this post.  “Jill is a fantastic addition to our community in New Ulm.  The combination of her experience as an nurse and her personality make her an excellent fit for this role.  I am very excited to have her on board.” said Roman Bloemke, Chief Operations Officer for Woodstone communities.

Our next new face is Jodi Keller.  Jodi takes over as the new Executive Director of Potter Ridge Assisted Living in Red Wing, Minnesota.

PRED (2 of 2)Jodi has been a practicing licensed social worker for over 25 years.  She began her employement at the age of 15, working as a CNA during high school and summers through college.  Jodi’s social work career began in adult mental health, however quickly returned to the field of health care, focusing on the aging population.  Jodi has been a social service director in long term care with Good Samaritan Society and HCR Manor care.  Jodi has also managed a memory care community for 8 years with Edgewood Vista.  Through her work, Alzheimer’s disease and other related dementia’s, she joined the MN/ND chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association in 2010 as a Regional Care Consultant , and then as a Program Manager for the Southern Regional office based out of Rochester.

“Jodi is great!  We are so happy to have found someone with so much professional background to be our ED at Potter Ridge.  Our residents, families, and staff will be very happy to have someone with her experience in this role.” stated Roman Bloemke, Director of Operations with Welcome Home Management Co., the management company for Potter Ridge.

Both Potter Ridge and Woodstone Senior Living are managed by Welcome Home Management Company.  WHMC is based out of Hutchinson, Minnesota and manages 11 communities throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin.  For more information on each company, please visit our website at www.wtohdevelopment.com.


For the past several years, We’ve been writing about what we are thankful for. I’ve asked our Executive Directors to participate, and I’ve asked other staff members to participate in writing this blog.

This year, it’s just me.

I want to express our sincere gratitude to our team that work with us every day. Our communities provide care 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. There isn’t a day that goes by that we don’t think about how lucky we are to work with such fantastic, and dedicated people. Thank you for all that you do!

To our families who have entrusted their most prized possession to our care, we say thank you. Thank you for believing in our vision and in our team’s ability to take care of your loved one. I hear so many wonderful comments about what you love most about our communities – I wish I could share them all. We may have nice looking buildings, but it always comes back to our staff and how they care for your loved one – and that makes us proud.

Bottom line, we are incredibly fortunate to be in this business and to care for others. We love the people who work with us and we absolutely adore our residents and their families.

We hope you have a very Happy Thanksgiving.

Roman Bloemke, Dir of Operations.

Welcome to the team!

It has been a tremendously busy last couple of months here at Welcome Home.

There are so many fabulous things going on in our communities, we can hardly keep up with them all.  Hopefully, you’ve gotten a chance to visit our Facebook pages to see all the stuff we are up to.

This week, we welcomed several new faces to our organization, and a couple of familiar faces making a new change.

We’ll start with the familiar faces first.

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Jacob Work, Executive Director/RN

First, we’d like to congratulate Jacob Work on his recent move to become the Executive Director/RN at Prairie View of Hector.  For the past 7 and a half years, Jacob has been a Regional Director with Welcome Home.  Jacob was born and raised in the small town of Swea City, Iowa.  He’s been an LPN since 2001, and went back to get his RN license in 2013.  Jacob has been working with Prairie View of Hector as the Regional Director since Welcome Home took over in April of 2013, so he is a familiar face to the staff, residents and their families.  “I feel like the luckiest person alive because I get to work with so many amazing people; residents, staff and their families, every day.” he recently stated.

“This is the type of position Jacob has dreamed of being in since he came to work at Welcome Home seven and a half years ago.  He’s a strong advocate for our residents and the people who care for them.  I’m really excited for him to live out his dream of running his own community!” states Roman Bloemke, Director of Operations at Welcome Home.

The new team members

Our next position move was to announce Dale Armitage as the new Executive Director of The Legends at Heritage Place in Sartell, Minnesota.

Dale Armitage, Executive Director

Dale Armitage, Executive Director

Dale has been working with seniors for over 20 years and brings an extensive background and knowledge to the table.  He has worked in Assisted Living, Acute Care, and Skilled Nursing facilities over those 20 years and he’s most excited about this new opportunity.

“I am very excited to be part of the team and look forward to meeting the Legends team!”

“After meeting Dale, I knew he was the perfect person to be our next Executive Director at the Legends at Heritage Place.  He is compassionate and has a long history of taking care of seniors.  I know our team is going to like working with him.” stated Mr. Bloemke

With Jacob moving on from the Regional Director role, that opened up the Regional Director position at Welcome Home.

Shannon Van Ort, Regional Director

Shannon Van Ort, Regional Director

Shannon Van Ort is our new Regional Director.  Shannon is a Hutchinson native and is a 2007 graduate of North Dakota State University.  Her experience working in specialty care has had her striving to enhance the daily lives of her residents.  “Shannon brings a great deal to the table for us at Welcome Home.  Her past experiences has led her to a true passion and caring for vulnerable adults.  I believe she is going to be a strong asset to our team.” stated Mr. Bloemke.

Ms. Van Ort stated: “I am very excited to be joining the Welcome Home team.  I look forward to meeting everyone and being able to enhance our teams”

We are really excited to bring on such talented people to our team.  We look forward to having them out on site to meet everyone very soon.  Be sure to give them a big welcome as they begin their next journey.

Welcome to the team!

Welcome Home Management company is proud to announce a new addition to our team.

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Patricia Issacson – Regional Director, Welcome Home Management Company

Today we welcomed Patricia Issacson to our Regional Director team.  Mrs. Issacson will be overseeing our communities in Red Wing, Sartell, Baxter, Moorhead and Breckenridge.

Patricia has worked in senior living since 1999, most recently as the Executive Director at Grand Meadows Senior Living in Glencoe, Minnesota.  She also has an extensive background working in memory care communities prior to her time at Grand Meadows.

“I am very excited to work with everyone at Welcome Home Management and getting to know the communities we serve.  I am very passionate about older adults and making sure they have a place to call their own.” Patricia said.

Roman Bloemke, Director of Operations at Welcome Home states, “We are very happy to have found someone with a great background and someone who is so committed to her work.  She brings knowledge and a history of working with seniors that she is very proud of.  We know she is going to do a fabulous job and we are glad to have her on board.”

Patricia lives in Dassel, Minnesota with her husband Jason, and their five children.

Over the next couple of weeks, we will be transitioning her in to the communities she will be working with.  If you see her out and about, be sure to give her a warm welcome!

Welcome Home Management Company operates eleven communities in both Minnesota and Wisconsin.  For more information about Welcome Home Management or for any of their communities, please visit us on our website at www.wtohdevelopment.com.