A bit about us and our family.
We have been married since 1984 raised four boys and two girls (Dan, Ben, Jon, Isaac, Bethany, and Brianna). We have two grandchildren (Keaton and Sawyer). We raised our large family in this Camas home before converting the lower level to an adult family home then three years later obtaining a duplex address in order to have the second adult family home licensed on the main level. Since adding the second adult family home we moved off-site.
How and why we got into elder care.
A series of events in which we look back now and know that it was providential. It goes back to when we actually built the home in 2005. Being a family of 8, we were hoping for extra space, but this seemed over the top. The house ended up larger then we expected. I remember wondering, “who would want such a big home after we are done with it?”
That’s when it struck me to finish the design in such a way that it could be used as an adult family home. I never thought we would qualify to run it. I expected to sell it to someone in the business. Then in 2009, a series of events happened in which we thought we would sell our home. At the same time, I began wondering what I would do when all our kids were grown and gone.
We invited a friend and commercial real estate agent out and asked him about selling it to someone who could use it as an adult family home. He came checked over the place and said, “Yes, it would be an excellent home for this purpose!” He also said “Sheryl… I’ve got to ask… why you don’t do this, you would be so good at it.”
That began my investigating. The more I looked into it, the more I felt drawn towards it. I picked out the school. I thought the timing would be when I was done raising my kids. At that time I still had four at home. However, in 2011 two more of our kids left home and we knew it was time to do what was in our hearts to do. Things began to come together:
- I enrolled in a school to get my C.N.A.
- I got a full-time job offer the next week
The job was perfect because it would allow me to experience caregiving in several different settings. During this time I fell in love with the adult family home setting of care. It is the best venue for caregivers and residents. Not too many and not too few residents to care for at a time.
- Over the next year, Joe remodeled the house to be ready for licensing and wrote our business plan while I went to work full time and began getting all the certifications we needed to get licensed.
Our home only took about nine months to fill and has stayed full since. Things happen for a reason, being ready to adjust with it has helped us move into this business and see the rewards of caring for the elderly in a meaningful and affirming way. We have created a rare history in that we have passed all our license visits at 100% with no infractions as well as obtained a great team of caregivers to help us. These things affirm us in knowing we are doing what we are supposed to do this. And we feel very rewarded in our work.