Dec 20- Our first group music therapy session took place yesterday. Julie from Singing Heart came out and used her guitar and our Granite House instruments-- an ocean drum, a Q-Chord, and our new Reverie Harp. So nice to see the interaction with her and hear how the sounds work in the great room. We provide this program with donor support and need your help to maintain it. For just $100 you can provide one session for the residents. What a valuable program that we are so pleased to offer!
Nov 6- THANK YOU to everyone who came to our Dedication and Housewarming! We had a great turnout and everyone loved seeing the house and meeting our new resident families. They all told their stories and made touching tributes to their family members who will make Granite House their home. Our gift registries have been such fun as we get packages delivered. We will have a well-equipped kitchen and some needed patient supplies to put away. Door and floor trim is being finished and painted, our staff is ready for orientation and training, and we are working on paperwork for our new residents to move in soon. More news soon about the upcoming Give to the Max Day, November 15. We will once again participate and will be grateful for your support for our startup expenses.
April 1- Dear Granite House friends--please share this! Here’s another way for us to raise money for Granite House. Between April 1 and June 1, 2018, the Landmark Group of Thrivent Financial in Lake Elmo will donate $10 (up to a total of $1,000) for every “like” they receive on their Facebook page. To participate you need to log into your own Facebook account and then go to https://www.facebook.com/landmarkgroup.thrivent/ or search for Landmark Group – Thrivent Financial and then “like” the page. (Liking a particular post won’t work. You need to “like” the page).
Aug 13- Another long hot day, chipping the downed trees in preparation to build a berm for the evergreens along Stagecoach Trail. Later this week the driveway will also be worked on to bring the grade up to the porch entry and sidewalk. Many thanks to our volunteers Larry and Chuck for moving branches for Tom to feed into the chipper. Their help made it possible to finish in one day.
March 24- Interior work is coming along at the house. Drywall is completed on the lower level and the upper level is in progress. We had some friends come by yesterday to help put batt insulation in the walls between the bedrooms for soundproofing. Thank you, Greg and Larry! There will be many more volunteer jobs to come-- sometimes on short notice-- like taping for painting prep, interior painting, building the shed, and cleaning/moving in. If you want to get on the call list let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
May 20- The evergreens have arrived at the property for planting on the berm along the road. Tom covered the root balls with wood chips and is watering them daily from a tank until the new well is hooked up to a faucet. These are some of the trees purchased with the sensory garden funds from our wonderful friends at Thrivent Community Landmark at our Home & Garden event last fall. Just 10 more days for you to LIKE their facebook site and trigger a $10 donation to Granite House. You'll need to log into your own Facebook account and then go to https://www.facebook.com/landmarkgroup.thrivent/or search for Landmark Group – Thrivent Financial and then “like” the page. (Liking just the post won’t work--you need to “like” the page.) Thank you! Please share and help us earn the rest of this generous offer of support.
Sept 22- Here is our 2018 Walk for Thought team for the MN Brain Injury Alliance. We had a great turnout with new friends and family members of our soon-to-be residents. This is our fifth year at the walk, and it's great to see so many who have come almost every year. We like looking back to see the children over the years. Looks like we'll need to get some teen-sized shirts soon to add to the toddler and youth sizes. it's been a very busy week at the house-- new photos of the interior coming!
Nov 6- In the midst of our long days of preparation for opening, we stop to remember our loyal Give the the Max friends! Every year on this day of generosity we are rewarded with gifts from people who think of us once a year on this special day. Join them tomorrow by going to the Granite House page at https://www.givemn.org/organization/Granite-House
and remember that ANY gift of ANY size will put us in the hourly drawing for a big award! If you prefer, you can make a donation directly to Granite House at any time on our website with our secure Paypal link. Thank you!
Dec 7- Another resident moves in, and a nice article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. A photographer was waiting when Aaron, the third resident to move in, arrived Monday morning. Here is the link to the online story, which appeared in the paper on Wednesday.
May 13- Lots of progress on the painting of the house! Here is Tom in the kitchen starting the first coat. Now the entire main floor is complete except for just two bedrooms. A day or two of cleanup and the lower level will be next. Cabinets are on the way, the elevator is going in soon, and we'll be looking for volunteers for cleanup, cabinets and trim.
Dec 2- Granite House has welcomed the first residents! We've had almost a week with our first two residents and their families. These two women enjoy having meals with the staff, having their families come to visit, and sitting by the fire on these cold winter evenings. Our new staff is getting to know the residents, who in turn are getting used to all the new surroundings and faces. Our male residents begin moving in tomorrow and next week, and then we will be ready to plan some gatherings for the holidays. We already have music therapy on the schedule and Amber has her eye on a Christmas tree.
April 15- We had another volunteer work day at Granite House last weekend. The crew got all of the ceilings and walls in the lower level and the entire bedroom wing primed in one busy morning. The drywall contractor Dennis Fruetel did the spraying and Tom, Lou, and Chuck back-rolled behind him. Carol, Jenn and Devin completed the masking and covering so the paint crew could get everything finished. Many thanks to you all for a job well done! Next we’ll start on the paint on the walls in preparation for cabinets.
UPDATES FROM OUR FACEBOOK PAGE for 2018
Scroll all the way down to start the year
June 25- Lights! Cameras! Air Conditioning! Yes, the crew from Collins Electrical has been at work installing fixtures, security lines, smoke detectors, and the very much appreciated A/C. Even without it, the cool concrete floors and the high efficiency windows and insulation have kept it comfortable inside. Our fixtures from Muska Lighting are a hybrid of residential and commercial styles. The wall sconces in the vaulted bedroom hall can be dimmed for use in the evening. The special truss feature in the hallway designed by Tom to create the vault continues to impress our visitors to the house along with the wide doors and smooth thresholds. Cabinets have arrived and are being installed. Great progress!
July 10- Last weekend Tom installed the beautiful maple cabinets in the kitchen. Next will be the appliances, cabinet pulls and counter tops. He's working outside this week preparing for the next concrete pour for the north side of the house. We now have water running at the outside faucet so the trees in our nursery can be watered at the site with a hose. The concrete floors may look dull now but just wait until they are finished and look like stone!
Nov 26- We are ready for our new residents to come in starting this week. Here is one of the bedrooms in the final stages of completion. The built-in maple storage cabinets have hanging space, drawers, and some open book shelves. Nice to keep items off the floor and out of sight. After the photo was taken the drawer and cabinet pulls were put on and the upper cabinet in the center had doors installed.Note the rail system along the ceiling for transfers from bed to chair.The staff has been trained and final preparations are underway. We'll have everyone moved in just in time to get decorated for Christmas. We hope to start our music therapy this month and welcome donor support for this program.
June 8- Another day of tree planting with our Master Gardeners. The bare root trees were potted to be held in our on-site shaded nursery until we are ready for planting. These trees are also from the sensory garden funds from our friends at Thrivent Community Landmark, and we will put out a call for volunteers in the fall for planting. The gardeners all got a tour of the house and were very impressed with the special features-- all entries are flush for wheelchairs, doors and hallways are extra wide, and there is lots of light in the kitchen and great room. The poured concrete floors will shine and look like they are wet when they are waxed and polished.
February 6- Here is the Granite House kitchen, ready for insulation and drywall. We've been taking photos of all the interior walls to keep track of pipes and wires before they are buried. On the left in the photo is the kitchen work area--the sink will be under the smaller window-- and the big dining table will sit in the middle of the room. The area on the right will be a seating area for visitors so families can come and join in with mealtimes and coffee. Note the concrete floors--poured over the in-floor heat.It will be warm and cozy!
July 27- Another milestone-- our septic system is complete. Here is Rick Fuhr from Fuhr Trenching out there with sand and gravel donated by our friends at Aggregate Industries. We are looking forward to the indoor plumbing being completed and the portable restroom being picked up.
Aug 27- SAVE THE DATE! The Granite House Dedication and Housewarming will be held on Tuesday, October 16 from 4:30 to 7:30 pm. Follow the link or click on the photo below to the event page on the website for details- RSVP, parking, and more about our gift registries at Target, Menards and Amazon.
Please join us for this very special event! Be our guest to come and see the house that our community built, and to help us to raise funds for programs developed just for our residents. We will have a casual buffet, soft drinks and a champagne toast after the program.
Nov 16- Progress in the hydrotherapy room! The roll-in shower to be used by our residents in shower wheelchairs is done. There will be a shower head on a long cord to reach all around the person in the chair. Note the rail system along the ceiling to transfer the resident out of the chair and on to a table for drying and dressing. Training starts next week for our new staff and then our residents will begin moving in. A very exciting week at Granite House.
Aug 7- This week's milestone-- the main level entry! The concrete floor of the future screened porch was poured on Friday, and yesterday the sidewalk from the porch to the upper driveway was done. Tom laid out the supports for the deck which will be on the west side of the porch (to the right in the photo) and did the slope calculations for the sidewalk to keep it as gradual as possible. This will be the main entry on the upper level, easy for wheelchairs and, if needed, stretchers from a flat transport. Note the flush entry into the house- no steps! Next week the driveway and upper level parking area will be upgraded and ready for delivery of appliances through the upper level.
A family-focused long-term care residence