The hospital gave me three days to find a place for my Mom, Lola, to continue her recovery. A few days earlier, Lola became dizzy, fell and broke her arm. She had very limited mobility since she could not use her arm at all. With no other local family members and a full-time job, I needed to find a supportive environment for Lola, not a nursing home — and quickly. I was given a long list of adult family homes to check out.
The first home I went to was Covenant House. It was conveniently located between Yakima Regional Hospital where I worked and my home. Cheryl and Del Miles were the new owners. I was greeted, shown around the house and introduced to the residents in the living room. The house was comfortable and warm and the residents were smiling. I could picture Lola in the living room.
After touring several other homes, I easily made my decision for Mom’s recovery to be at Covenant under the care of Cheryl and Del. I was never disappointed. My Mom spent about six weeks getting over her arm incident. When Lola was in pain at 4:00 a.m., Del would get up with her, put a pot of coffee on and start a Yahtzee game to get her mind off the pain. Occasionally Del helped transport Lola to her doctors’ appointments. I visited Covenant frequently to spend time with Lola. I could go home or to work knowing my Mom was receiving great care with watchful eyes on her.
Months later, my Mom broke a vertebra and needed a month of downtime to heal. Once again Lola returned to Covenant House and experienced the same compassion, quality care, plenty of laughter, good food and love.
Covenant House was a great experience for Lola and me.
(Footnote: Lola passed away in 2002 and I still have fond memories of her time at Covenant House. Several years later, Cheryl and Del started their second adult family home across the street and named it Lola Kay in honor of my Mom and her roommate at Covenant.)
Once upon a time my parents lived comfortably in an assisted living apartment, and then my father died. My brother and I were told our mother could not continue living there without my dad. We had to find her a new, safe place—fast. We looked all over the valley. Luckily we found Izzy’s Adult Family Home, and Mom moved in one week after Dad’s death. We worried about her being disoriented and confused by her new surroundings, and I think she was, initially, but she adjusted much faster than I had expected.
Cheryl and Del Miles, the owners, made a big effort to make her comfortable, even going to the trouble and expense of buying and setting up an outdoor gazebo with a seating area, because my mother loved being outdoors so much.
The rooms at Izzy’s are attractive and comfortable, and the great room is sunny, large and yet cosy. Meals are taken at a large dining table, and an effort is made to engage everyone with books, games, and activities.
The strength of any facility is not in the physical building, but in the people. Cheryl and Del are wonderful in themselves, but they wisely recognize how important their staffing is to a successful operation. This is not a warehouse operation where residents are kept adequately clean, fed, and on a rigid, regular schedule. It is a home. I visited frequently and dropped in whenever I had a few moments. The routines of a home were always getting done—cooking, cleaning, laundry—but the needs of the residents took first priority—always.
Elder care is hard work, and yet the staff at Izzy’s had fairly low turnover, which is so important to residents (like my mother) who have a tenuous grasp on reality. Cheryl and Del help caregivers to keep their training up, and from what I observed staff members have a true love for working with the elderly. They thought my mother was funny. They learned how to manage her upswept hairdo. They helped her with her endless games of solitaire.
Adult children who take elderly parents for an outing and bring them back may dread the returns, when parents might beg to go home with them. That never happened to me. Many times I took my mother out for a drive or for lunch with her friends. Several times when I stopped the car at Izzy’s door Mom said “Is this my home?” Then she said, “This is a nice place to live. I like it.”
Mom spent her last days in hospice at Izzy’s. I am thankful for that time. The staff supported me as much as they did my mother as I sat vigil at her bedside. Mom died in July, 2015, but after two years of regular visits to Izzy’s my car still heads there as if on a track, and I have stayed in touch with Cheryl, Del, and the Izzy’s staff. I will always be grateful to them for their kindness and care for my mother.
We had been told that our mother, Izzy, had to leave the hospital immediately because she was a medicaid/medicare patient. So I moved her to a well known nursing home. She laid on a mattress on the floor, the nurses forgot her medications and she sat at the dinner table with a woman who yelled at mom that she was going to kill her. Then her roommate told me that the nurses were ignoring Mom. I immediately started looking for an adult care facility so she would get loving, healthy care.
I found Cheryl and Del Miles’ homes. I was overjoyed and never worried about Mom’s care again. They treated her with love, joy and respect. They loved Mom and I was thrilled when they went to her memorial service in Grandview.
To this day I call Cheryl and Del my Mom’s angels. If I ever need adult care, Cheryl and Del will be the only people I will call. God bless them!
~Corky (Mattingly) Holloway
Whether planned or unplanned when one needs to move a family member into a care facility the stress can be enormous. You have an ideal list of wishes in a care facility that is balanced with the time available to make the transition. We had such a situation that the need was immediate in Yakima.
Our Dad was the at home care provider for Mom who was confined to bed. Out of the blue our Dad had an emergency and was rushed to the hospital. We live in Edmonds, WA so it was a quick rush to action to get to Yakima. Between caring for Mom and visiting Dad at the hospital we visited Covenant House as we needed care for both parents.
From the start it was obvious the stars had lined up as they were able to handle all our needs and all the boxes on our list were checked off. Dad was only with us a short week and the providers helped us through that with care and compassion. Mom was settled into “her” room and she got into a routine of daily conversations with providers, friends visiting, petting the four legged care providers and storytelling with the kids who came to visit at the home.
We know that this home environment extended the time we had with Mom who passed away a year later. We hit a homerun with Covenant House, a place you can call a home during life’s transitions.
~Marla and Ken Gunn
Miles Adult Family Homes provided a loving and caring home for our mother when we could no longer care for her at home. We were given the support and respite that we were so desperately in need of. Our mother was not an easy keeper as she suffered with Alzheimer’s Disease and despite the daily adversities that we were faced with Del and Cheryl Miles maintained their commitment to provide a safe and very comfortable home for her. We quickly developed trust and respect for our mothers daily caregivers who are always professional and often went above and beyond to help make a difficult situation better. We have and will continue to recommend Miles Adult Family Homes to anyone who is looking for help in caring for a loved one. Thank you Del and Cheryl. We so appreciate you, your wonderful staff and what you do for our community.
With sincere gratitude,
~Wes and Lorie Morris
During the two year period our mom lived at Izzy’s Adult Family Home, we had complete peace of mind concerning her care. The staff attended to her individual needs and preferences. Knowing mom loved the sight, smells and sounds of the outdoors, they provided a shaded sitting area in Izzy’s peaceful back yard for her and others to sit, visit, play cards and have a glass of lemonade. We offer high marks for this facility in all categories: cleanliness and safety of building, quality of meal preparation, personal hygiene and safety of residents, professionalism of owner and staff, efficiency and ease of communication between family members and staff. For us, this was key…to be able to access by phone, a caregiver or the owner quickly over an issue or a question regarding mom, was much appreciated. Our entire family felt welcome, respected and cared for at all times and we know that you will, as well, should you decide to choose Izzy’s for your loved one.
~Peter and Kathy Mackintosh