Resident Spotlights

Finding joy in senior living: A family’s perspective



After 54 years of owning their single-family home in Richfield, Minn., Jerry and Muriel Olsen made the move to Founders Ridge. Founders Ridge, a Presbyterian Homes & Services (PHS) senior living community located in Bloomington, Minn., offered the Olsens everything they were looking for:

• A kind and caring staff
• Life enrichment activities
• Lifetime care options

Starting the search early was key in having the family identify the right community, amenities and apartment style.

“We toured many communities across the Twin Cities,” explained the Olsen’s oldest daughter, Kirsten.

Jerry and Muriel, 89 and 84, respectively, waited as long as they could to leave their home, but knew that moving into a senior living community was the right decision. The only daughter that lived in-state, Kirsten was the primary contact during her parents’ 9-month search, which stemmed from her parents’ difficulty in taking the stairs.

Location was a top priority for Jerry and Muriel, and the community is conveniently situated 15 minutes from where Kirsten lives. “Founders Ridge is just a beautiful property,” Kirsten shared. “When all was said and done, my parents were thrilled about the location.”

Distinctive difference: The staff

“One of the most important parts of our search was the staff,” said Kirsten. “I took it seriously. The Founders Ridge staff seemed top-notch.”

Specifically, Ramon Briones, housing counselor, was “very personable, very upbeat, always had a smile on his face, almost a twinkle in his eye. He’s just a very wonderful human being,” Kirsten remembered.

Now that Jerry and Muriel have lived at Founders Ridge for 10 months, they deeply appreciate the staff. In particular, Tiffany, Peggy, Brenda, Rick, Carter and Dustin all stand out.

“Tiffany has a great personality and is a lot of fun,” Jerry said. “Peggy at the front desk knows what’s going on everywhere. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t share how Rick was one of the first people to welcome us.”

“One thing that impressed me is they call you by your name,” Muriel shared. “I was amazed at how soon people knew who we were. Not just ‘hello’ but ‘hello, Muriel, how are you doing?’”

Kirsten thanks the Founders Ridge staff for “making a very difficult move so much easier for my entire family. You all deserve gold stars!” she said.

Creating new friends and fond memories

In addition to the staff, transitioning to a community with social activities was important.

The Olsens begin each day with coffee and conversation over breakfast in the community dining room. As the day unfolds, they choose from activities like puzzles or life enrichment events. Evenings are filled with special dinners, movies in the onsite theater or games with neighbors.

“Living here affords the opportunity to maintain sociability,” noted Muriel.

Gardening is also one of Jerry’s favorite pastimes. Thanks to help from his wife and daughter, Founders Ridge will start a gardening club in the spring, with free-standing, raised beds for anyone interested in getting their hands a little dirty.

Peace of mind

The transition to living at Founders Ridge was “seamless,” according to Kirsten. Her parents had peace of mind with the decision, and although it was an adjustment moving to a smaller apartment, they’ve enjoyed the community so far.

“They’ve often said ‘this is home now,’” Kirsten said.

Kirsten is relieved her parents now enjoy the convenience of one-level living. “I don’t have to worry about stairs or steps or icy sidewalks with them,” she said.

As part of the Founders Ridge community, the Olsens also have priority access to other PHS living and care options based on availability.

“My peace of mind goes beyond the maintenance-free living,” commented Kirsten. “If something in their life changes, we know the possibility of moving seamlessly between care levels exists.”

“We have everything we need right here,” Muriel said.


About Founders Ridge

Founders Ridge offers independent living, assisted living along with memory care. Founders Ridge creates abundant opportunities to experience the best of life. With spacious, designed apartment homes, surrounded by all the conveniences of the town center, everything is offered to be as independent as possible today and tomorrow. Learn more about how magnificent life at Founders Ridge can be. 

Interested in a PHS community?

Your decisions today will shape the kind of life you have tomorrow. There are many living options to choose from in Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin. PHS communities provide a fulfilling and supportive environment for older adults. You’re encouraged to contact us today to learn more about the freedom to live well at a PHS community.



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