It seems that a number of the things we do here are, as we sometimes put it, simply done “to make our people happy,” that is: to help provide joy, satisfaction, or fulfillment to our residents.
(In case you’re new to this blog, I serve at an assisted living-type facility.)
This motive led me to our activity room kitchen yesterday afternoon when I was relieved at the front desk by our evening receptionist.
With the hot, muggy weather we’d been having, I hadn’t touched the oven for quite a while. Now with beautiful, cooler temperatures, baking was no longer out of the question.
Some of our ladies really love to bake. They enjoy getting “their hands in there” and taking part in activities they once undertook to look after their families.
It can be a bit challenging to keep two or more ladies busy while measuring out ingredients and sometimes having to run to get something I need from elsewhere in the building (like an egg from the main kitchen or cooking spray from the conference room pantry as was the case yesterday.)
Nonetheless, I do it because “it makes our people happy.” They so enjoy it and thrive on being part of this project. The other residents savor the chance to have home-baked special treats as well.
It is so neat to be able to say: “Would you like a cookie? We [here mentioning helpers by name] made them this afternoon.” It is uplifting for me to be able to “lift them up” and credit them with making something that so delights their fellow residents.
I find that letting older people, now retired, have a chance at some real, productive work does them a lot of good (physically and emotionally). I have seen it many times.
Tomorrow, I will put this philosophy into practice again (out of necessity, if nothing else). We received about 100 more pounds of rhubarb this afternoon, and it’s not going to cut up itself.
Sr. Chistina M. Neumann
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