Toni Zibert | Baxter Springs
A little haven has been created at the Quaker Hill Retirement and Assisted Living Facility.
The fenced patio area and yard at the southeastern corner of the building has been under the care of a small group of residents, who have lovingly spruced it up with a thriving vegetable garden with everything from tomatoes to peppers, bird and squirrel feeders, and flowers. “It was overgrown and didn’t look very good,” said resident Jerry Hart, “we all agreed that it had to change.”
And it has – the garden has been in place for two years now, and is the pride and joy of the residents. It was such a success that another garden was put in place near the outdoor employee hangout just a little later as a show of appreciation, and is filled with tall sunflowers and cantaloupe. “We wanted to do something for the employees, since they do so much for us,” said Hart.
Both gardens have produced over 200 pounds worth of vegetables and fruit. Anything that comes out of the gardens is enjoyed during social hours and used in activities.
Activities Director Karen Stockton has overseen the project with a smile. “They’ve enjoyed it this year a lot,” Stockton said. “It’s been a lot of fun for everyone.”
Besides the garden, the residents have enjoyed numerous trips to places like the park or the mall and “movie night” at the facility, with movies projected onto a big screen and popcorn and candy served. One of the recent excursions the residents especially enjoyed was a fishing trip. Stockton has made sure to get the residents out into the fresh air as much as possible.
Of the trips, resident Jean Stafford smiled and said, “She (Stockton) takes the time to load us up into the buses and tote us around in our wheelchairs. I don’t know anyone else that could be that patient.”
Janice Wutton agreed on the comment about Stockton. “She’s the best activities director we could have ever had.
“She’s our family, she takes care of us.”