End of Summer Issue
Vacation to Port Austin!
Before the summer ends, the ladies over at our Heights home took a mini vacation to Bay City up in the bay of the thumb of Michigan! Their Home Manager Diea Perry set them up with a weekend trip to enjoy a boat tour on the Princess Wenonah, some swimming at their hotel, and some fun meals on beautiful Lake Huron! Victoria, Laura, and Jennifer had smiles on their face the entire time!

The ladies got a hotel room for the entire weekend so that they could experience the most the area has to offer! The hotel they stayed at had a pool that the ladies took full advantage of! When they weren't in the pool, they were able to devour delicious meals at some of the restaurants around the City. One of their meals at the hotel had live entertainment right on the bay. As they ate, they were able to watch boats dock and take off in the marina while the music serenaded them, bringing them all closer together!

The biggest highlight of the trip was the two and a half hour Saginaw Bay cruise on the Princess Wenonah! The relaxing cruise supplied them with snacks and a tour guide that highlighted special sights, things to do in the area, and the wildlife that lives there. The ladies could hang out on the top deck in the sun or they could lounge on a lower deck staying shaded but still able to see the sights! By the end of the weekend, needless to say, no one was thrilled to go home but everyone had a fantastic vacation to remember!
Community Spotlight:
MORC Trainer April Strnad!
Have you ever wondered who lives behind the MORC training? One of those faces belongs to April Strnad the MORC LMS System Administrator! April has worked at MORC for over 23 years now. She began in Data Management, then moved to the IT Helpdesk, before settling into the training department where she has been thriving!

April was born and raised on the east side of Detroit. While venturing out for a few years to Missouri, the beaches called her back and she ultimately wound up back in Southeast Michigan! She shares her life here with her 5 year old cat Cruikshank (pictured above) who prefers all the attention to herself! Before MORC, April went to Specs Howard School of Broadcast and Arts to start a career in radio. Her radio career pushed her to gain confidence in public speaking and to command a room in a vulnerable group setting-which makes her the perfect fit to assist thousands of caregivers through trainings!
While most of the staff will never actually get to reach out to April, she is the admin's most beneficial resource! She walks us through the system and gives us the tools to assist employees in their training progress. When the 2020 pandemic began, the training team at MORC realized that they needed to switch trainings to online as quickly as possible! Within 30 days, they were able to begin publishing those courses to keep trainings going with social distancing! Her favorite feature of the MORC system is the report generators that admin are able to run. Being in the position she is in, April also gets invited to the most exciting events like Macomb County Staff Appreciation Day, fundraisers for providers, and even our 3rd Circle Giving Tuesday fundraiser coming up later this year!
When April is not working, she is constantly bettering herself a little everyday, while also getting into her favorite hobbies. April creates jewelry for her friends and family and is creating a workbench center in her home for it. She is also a part of MMHC- Michigan Mushroom Hunters Club and searches for mushrooms in many forests, fields, and large yards when she is invited. More recently, she even became a part of a large gaming community that quests and dungeons together which she loves! April was thoughtful enough to include 3rd Circle in a craft donation when she was sorting through her hobby items. She dropped off a few bags filled with crafty supplies to give to some individuals in our homes that were excited to have some more fun activities!
Staff Sidebar: New Employees
In this field, there is no shortage of turnover which means that we are always training someone new! With the pandemic, staffing has been harder on employers more than ever. The best way to avoid losing staff is to make sure that we give them all the proper tools and knowledge for success to support us!
While we have MORC training that helps the new employees learn the basics of the field, we also have to make sure that we are giving our new teammate on-the-job training specific to the individual's that are in the home. After all, how can we expect them to support us if we don't support them first? Begin by building that initial respect and communication as it can get you far and possibly avoid losing the employee before their time! When an employee feels like they can trust you, they may come to you about their issues and how to fix them rather than shutting down and quitting or creating tension with other staff!
Another reason that many employees leave is that they don't feel confident in their role. We can easily avoid this by slowing down to focus on training and including them step-by-step in our daily procedures so that they have the whole picture and can succeed on their own. 3rd Circle has a lot of tools and resources to offer staff, but ultimately the home manager sets the environment for their home which means it all starts there!
Be sure to follow up with your new employee after training and the first couple months to see what they may be struggling with or have concerns about. Sometimes all it takes is giving them some verbal support to change their perception and showing that you care about them by spending some minutes on them! You may even be able to give them an answer to a question they've had come up along the way or you may find out that something can be improved for the whole team from the conversation-you never know! Taking a little extra time to spend with your new hires can really give you a good team and environment in the long run!
...Good Gossip!
Laronda Gray over at the Melvin home celebrated her birthday this past month! Her roommates helped her eat her cake and made sure she had an exciting day!
Matthew Staines from Valdosta took a trip out with home manager Cindy Baunsgard to Holly State Park this past weekend to enjoy the sand and sun!
The Valdosta home took another day out to Jimmy John's Field to enjoy another baseball game! Josh Flanders was able to throw the first pitch of the game, again!
Yet ANOTHER trip to Jimmy John's field from the guys over at Valdosta! Josh and Matt utilized every bit of the summer by making it a memorable one!

Perfect Timesheets:

Monthly Paperwork:

Snow Apple
Newsletter Submissions:

Diea Perry
Big Shoutout to CHRIS FORD our Employee of the Month!

Favorite Color: Green
Fun Fact: Interested in Quantum Physics
Favorite Artist: Grateful Dead
Favorite Movie: Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Loves to: Play Guitar

This month, employee of the month goes to one of our long-term direct care professionals, Christopher Ford! Chris started with 3rd Circle in June of 2017 and is still working at our Valdosta home today! He has been featured in the newsletter a few times having fun in the community with the Valdosta guys. Other than being dependable and following through on his teamwork, Chris steps up to interact with the guys and set up fun activities for them to go do! Last month he took Matt to a concert at Pine Knob and took Matt and Josh camping! Chris is a shining example that the job can also be a lot of fun-and that you can be recognized for stepping up to have fun! Thank you Chris for all you do!
September 11- FREDRICK WHITE
September 17- KANE MURRAY
September 19- JENNIFER MEECH
September 28- JUSTIN SHORT
September 29- JOY SCHULTZ
The Easiest Whoopie Pies!
1/2 pack of 8oz bar Cream Cheese, softened
1/4 cup Butter, softened
1/2 jar of 7oz Marshmallow Fluff
12 soft Cookies of your choice
  • In a medium bowl combine cream cheese and butter with a hand mixer until smooth and fluffly.
  • Fold in Marshmallow fluff to mixture.
  • Use mixture to spread a good layer on bottom of 6 cookies.
  • Place the 6 other cookies bottom down onto the filling.
  • Enjoy!

**For peanut butter whoopie pies, substitute 1/4 cup of peanut butter for the butter!
NEWSLETTER SUBMISSIONS CAN BE SENT TO: nallen.3rdcircle@gmail.com