A Day in the Life at Saint Therese of Woodbury

Meet John and Lois

When John and Lois first moved to Woodbury, it was primarily farmland. Corn, soybeans and hay fields stretched for miles. John and Lois owned about 130 acres near the Schilling family farm. As their children grew, they didn’t express much interest in farming. One went to law school. Another became an accountant. The youngest, who appeared most interested in farming during his early days, ended up in California at a big-shot advertising firm.

About the same time John and Lois had a conversation about retiring from farming, John heard from neighbors that a new senior living community was coming to Woodbury. In seeking a maintenance-free retirement, they sold their land to a developer and moved to Saint Therese of Woodbury in a beautiful two-bedroom apartment, right where the Schillings once harvested corn.

Lois’ favorite spot in the apartment is the sunroom where she’s reminded of the old porch she used to sit on in the mornings, warming her hands on a cup of coffee, watching John start up his tractor. Mornings now are pretty much the same: Lois enjoying a cup of coffee in the sunroom with their dog, Coco, snuggling in her lap, overlooking the beautiful grounds. John and Lois can occasionally be found volunteering in the gardens on campus when they miss the feel of fresh soil between their fingers, a fond memory from their farming days. Sometimes they chuckle about all the maintenance of the farm and wonder how they did it for so long.

Last week, John joined the woodworking group. They meet weekly to whittle a little and talk a lot. John thinks it’s nice to have a group of guys to shoot the breeze with. The same group of guys meets in the clubroom weekly for cards and a glass of scotch (or soda, depending on personal preference).

Lois has really taken a liking to the art room. She meets with a group every Monday to try her hand at the new project the activities director whipped up. Mondays are pretty busy for Lois! Before art class, you can find her in the warm, salt-water aquatic therapy pool during strength and fitness class lead by Bryce. She usually finishes in the wellness center with 20 minutes in the hot tub followed by a visit with the massage therapist.

Those evenings Lois is thankful dinner is just a few steps away in the dining room. They always find something they like on the menu and two hot cups of tea are brought to their table without hesitation. Sometimes they’ll take the sedan out of the heated garage and drive over to Woodbury Lakes shopping district to dine and run a few errands. On the nights Lois feels like cooking, like Sunday after Mass in the campus chapel, they stay in their apartment and eat in front of the gas fireplace.

John and Lois have quite the weekend planned because their son from California is flying in with their grandchildren. They booked one of the campus guest suites. They love having the amenities of a hotel so their guests are always comfortable. John reserved the clubroom for the entire family on Saturday. Since it’s such a large group, dining services is catering a pasta bar. All Lois needs to do is bake her famous brownies. With help from John and the grandkids, the brownies will be ready (and devoured) in no time.

Senior volunteer gardening at Saint Therese of Woodbury
John with tools
in senior apartment