In Australia we were able to celebrate Christmas under much better conditions than expected, unlike millions around the world who were struggling with much more difficult pandemic conditions. However, Christmas at the Homes was still a little bit different to usual.
A couple of weeks before Christmas day, Angie and Iwan did a splendid job of putting up Christmas trees in Buildings 10 and 12. And, even though the community room in Building 14 was closed due to renovations, they put up a Christmas tree in the window and even made a glowing, false fireplace next to it.
This cheery display could be seen from the gardens, and was enjoyed by many passers by. Thank you Iwan and Angie.
On the evening of Tuesday 15th December we had Christmas carols in the gardens at the Homes. Usually we would have had a gathering in the community room with singing round the piano and supper. This year a small group of ex-students of Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School lead the singing from the garden between Buildings 12 and 14, thank you to Steph Elhage, Shao Quin Lim, Steph Lukas, Eilidh Ross and Zoe Sawatij. Laura Ross, the former Head of Choral Music at the school, accompanied the singers on the keyboard and Don Hamilton, from the Homes management committee, acted as host and compare. Residents at the Homes were able to watch and join in from their balconies, or listen through their open doors or watch via a live streaming link. On this mild summer evening in the gardens, the atmosphere was serene and lovely, and the voices of the singers were so beautiful as to send tingles down the spine. Thank you to everyone who made it such an enjoyable evening.
Christmas lunch at the Homes was also quite different from the usual gathering in the community room for a shared meal. This year the Homes decided to provide individual Christmas meals prepared by the in-store chefs at the East Ivanhoe Grocers. The meals had roast pork and turkey with cranberry sauce and gravy, roast potato and pumpkin, carrots and peas, all accompanied by an individual plum pudding and custard. They were vacuum-sealed and therefore were able to be collected from the office by residents, or delivered to their door on Christmas Day by our wonderful resident carers Jaysmine and Nick, and eaten at a time that suited the individual residents. When Nicky our Manager, went to collect the meals from East Ivanhoe FoodWorks Grocers, she was informed that the meals were being donated by the store owners, Paul and Debbie Schroeder. Thank you to Paul and Debbie for their generosity in providing this delicious food for our residents to enjoy.
We hope that you have all had a happy Christmas and wish you a safe and happy New Year 2021.