Val says living at Margaret Stoddart Retirement Village means she is part of a wonderful community and she can also spend time following her craft and leisure pursuits.
Her daughters helped her choose Margaret Stoddart and the sunny room in the village’s resthome that she now calls home. It was a great choice for both Val and her family. She moved into the cosy village just a few weeks before the upheaval of the February 2011 Canterbury earthquake.
For the past nine years the location of the village has given her many options, one of her daughters, Robyn, lives in Rolleston and can easily come by and visit her and she often chooses to go shopping along Riccarton Road and the nearby Westfield mall.
The boutique village is close to the many amenities that the Riccarton retail area, Hagley Park and the nearby central city provide. There are lots of cafés and restaurants within walking distance.
Val loves knitting, toy and craft making, reading books, solving jigsaw and other puzzles. With fellow residents, Val loves to partake in regular social events including Ryman Healthcare’s Triple A exercise programme and the village get-togethers that include regular Happy Hours and playing housie on Fridays. There are also weekly excursions in the village van to look forward to.
“We go to Tai Tapu quite a lot and have an ice cream. We go to New Brighton, Sumner or Lyttelton, just around and about,” Val says.
“One time we went to Orana Wildlife Park. That was good. We’ve been on a couple of day trips to the Weka Pass Railway line up north (near Waipara).”
She and her three brothers were brought up in the family residence in Spreydon, and Val says she stayed living at home until she married Joe, having met him on a “blind date” at a local social dance.
The couple remained in Christchurch for a while, with Val raising daughters Robyn and Dianne (now living in Wellington) and later working in a Sydenham clothing factory. Joe worked as a boilermaker as well as helping do the reclamation and construction work on Cashin Quay in Lyttelton.
The couple later moved to Picton and together ran a motel, which Val said was a very busy business. When Joe passed away and she had her own medical issues to deal with her daughters urged her to move back to Christchurch and Margaret Stoddart.
From her resthome room, she enjoys going down to the dining room to have meals with resident friends. Margaret Stoddart village provides the very best of resthome care as well as assisted living in serviced apartments and independent living.
The village amenities include a bar, a dining room, and a hair salon.
Village Manager Merrin Jack says residents love the cosy feel and relaxed atmosphere within one of Ryman’s more boutique villages. While Margaret Stoddart is tucked away from the hustle and bustle of city life, it is also part of the Riccarton community and newcomers immediately feel at home.