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Sharing beauty, celebrating seniors

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Click on the image to see the photo gallery of winners.

I prefer to celebrate holidays one at a time, unless the calendar dictates otherwise. My gift-shopping began last weekend, but for me, the post-Thanksgiving holiday season really began Monday, when I received my first holiday greeting card.

Cards arriving in mailboxes across the country are putting smiles on recipients’ faces. Americans love sending cards at this time of year, according to the Greeting Card Association (GCA), which says that Christmas cards are the most popular type in the United States. Americans purchase 1.6 billion Christmas cards every year—one-fourth of all cards bought in the country all year. Additionally, we buy 15 million Thanksgiving cards and an untold number of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year’s cards (the GCA doesn’t have statistics related to those observances).

Almost three-fourths of those sending cards do so because they themselves enjoy receiving them, according to Hallmark research cited by the GCA. This year no doubt will bring particular delight to those receiving cards designed by the winners of the Emeritus Senior Living Resident Art Contest (click on the photo in the upper left corner to see all of them).

The winter-themed contest was promoted by the life enrichment directors at the 500-plus Emeritus communities. Residents completed the artwork during scheduled art classes or on their own. A panel of artists and designers culled 10 finalists from more than 250 entries, and the public selected the five winners in October by voting on the Emeritus Facebook page.

“We were astounded by all of the creativity, work and effort each resident put into their artwork,” says Kelly Scott, vice president of program development and innovation. “Creating art is a part of our life enrichment program at Emeritus, which is designed to add joy, purpose and meaning to the lives of our residents. We do this by offering activities and programs that reflect the talents and interests of our residents, while also offering experiences that will challenge them and keep them mentally healthy.”

The residents’ stories are as interesting as their winning designs:


Lois Bowers

Lois Bowers


Lois A. Bowers was senior editor of Long-Term Living from 2013-2015.