Nancy Watkins

Assisted Living Olympia WA - Nancy works with AFH ownerNancy Watkins has spent ten years serving seniors and their families, representing assisted living and memory care communities and working with adult family homes and other long-term care providers in Washington. She helped to rewrite Washington’s regulations to better serve its seniors and developed the state’s first Aging and Disability Services Administration-approved training program for managers of memory care and assisted living communities. She knows what to look for and the questions to ask when touring a care setting. And she can tell you who is doing a good job. When developing a list of options for a senior’s care setting, she will include only those settings that have met her high standards for quality care. More...
Certified Senior Advisor

Why the Right Elder Care Home is so Important

Their plea pursues me. “I wanna go home. Can you help me?” They try to get out. They look for a door, an elevator to open. They wander out, and sometimes get lost. They are searching for a home that no longer exists. They are the 5.4 million with Alzheimer’s* whose disabled mind has robbed them of the familiarity that once felt safe.

This quote comes from a recent post by Marguerite Manteau-Rao at the Huffington Post.  Marguerite is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and CEO of Presence Care Project. Her objective is to educate caregivers on effectively caring for those with various forms of Dementia.

man gardeningHer article Living With Alzheimer’s, Looking for a Home lists 7 important areas to consider when seeking housing for loved ones that suffer dementia and can no longer live on their own:

  • Safety
    Home is a refuge from the outside world, a protected place where we can let our guard down. Once inside, we need not worry about watching our stuff, or worrying about our safety. We do not let strangers in unless we want to.
  • Familiarity
    At home, we know what to expect. Same smells, lived-in furniture, people, sounds, daily routines — these provide us with the reassurance of predictability, and the continuity to thread our sense of self.
  • Comfort
    Old slippers, easy chair, temperature just right, warm PJs, cozy corner by the fireplace — these are some of the ingredients of comfort to be found in our home.
  • Freedom
    Within the walls of home, we can do whatever we want, whenever we want. We can decide to put on some music or not. We can go to the fridge and fix ourselves a snack anytime. We can set our own rules. We can be ourselves.
  • Closeness
    Home is a place for close bonds with a few loved ones. Spouses, children, friends, relatives, neighbors, pets, satisfy the relational beings that we are. We don’t feel alone.
  • Identity
    Only at home can we indulge our unique preferences, our favorite tea, our music, our comfort food, our preferred TV show… Folks at home know what we like. Home is personal.
  • Domesticity
    Closely identified with home are the chores that we get to participate in, whether actively or as a witness. Grocery shopping, planning meals, cooking, doing laundry, cleaning house, taking out garbage, tending our gardens…

As your consultant, Assisted Living Options will help you find elder care, such as an assisted living or adult family home, that meets these objectives.We value these characteristics of “home” and incorporate them in our decisions regarding which homes we will represent.


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Nancy was so compassionate

I can’t even begin to tell you how wonderful it has been having Nancy help us find a place for my Mom who has dementia. Nancy was so incredible and helpful especially at a time when we were, as can be imagined, having one of the most difficult family events ever. Nancy was so compassionate more »

Rinee M.
Thank you so much

Hi Nancy, I want to thank you on behalf of my brothers and I for helping us find a place for our mother. I was at a loss as to how to go about things until I got hold of you. I’m sure we would still be looking had it not been for your help. more »

Chuck T.
My cousin is very happy now

Thank you for all that you did for my cousin… She may have been reluctant at first, but she is very happy now (and much safer). You played an important part in this transition.

Fr. Tim I
Great help finding a nice home for dad

Nancy, thanks for the great help in finding a nice home for my dad – things are so much better for him now

Bob P.
Positive spin on the transition.

Talked to mom today and heard no regrets (after her move to assisted living). I give you a lot of the credit… you really helped to put a positive spin on the whole transition.

Elizabeth A.
A mere thanks hardly covers it

Picking me up, handling the walker every time, generally bolstering me mentally; a mere thanks hardly covers it all!

Margaret I.
Good fit to Mothers needs

Thanks Nancy for responding so quickly to my plea for help. I couldn’t have done it without you. Finding a home for my mother so quickly and a good fit to her needs. I now know I would have made a critical mistake if I had done this on my own. Your guidance in knowing more »

Barb H.
Good care of my Dad

I can’t thank you enough for recommending the house my Dad is living in. Joyce and Sandy are great, along with the other gals. They take such good care of my Dad and I think he really is enjoying living there. It has been a great move for him.

Mary M.
Wonderful to work with

Hi Nancy! This is a hello and thank-you from Duane B’s family. You miraculously found him an assisted living place right after Christmas 2011. He was 96 at the time and in a “spend down” period. You found him a wonderful place in Kirkland. Anyway, I was trying to find something else in my e-mails more »

Cheri A.