Recently, we held a brief ceremony on the grounds of The Ivey to dedicate our new Reflection Garden in memory of our former member, Paul Stevens, who passed away last year.
Thanks to the generosity of his wife, Brenda, her gift in memory of her husband made it possible to create this new quiet retreat of comfort and continuous renewal on our campus. The centerpiece of the garden is a gorgeous wooden bench, positioned where one can sit and overlook The Ivey – as we know Paul is doing every day.
It was an honor to emcee the ceremony, reminisce about Paul, and dedicate the garden and bench. Attendees each received a sprig of rosemary and used it to bless the bench and garden with water. Why rosemary? A symbol of remembrance, love and friendship, rosemary is the perfect choice for a blessing at The Ivey because it is said that eating the sprigs helps with maintaining memory!!
Brenda also said a few words, which truly moved us.
“The Ivey staff has such a caring heart and loving nature,” she said. “You all kept Paul with us longer.”
He’s still with us, in our hearts and minds, as are each of our members whose lives touch us and bless us.
It’s very therapeutic to pause and remember the people who grace our lives. We remember Paul: his love of running, his collection of special coins and Civil War medals, his great smile and cute dimples, his kind heart and true gentlemanly nature.
And we’re so appreciative that Brenda paused and remembered us, too, with a gift to help us create a space for quiet reflection on the many important and special people who come through our doors. Sadly, we have lost too many recently, but now we have a space for staff and family to go for remembering, thanks to Brenda and Paul.
So the next time you’re at the grocery store or Farmer’s Market, pick up some rosemary. Let its unique aroma fill the rooms of your home with memories of friends and family – both with us and passed – and fill the spaces of your heart with love and thankfulness.
Then come by The Ivey for a contemplative sit on our new bench. The flowers are blooming, the garden is fragrant, and the view is beautiful.
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