A Day in the Life - Dorothy

Woman with cat

Dorothy Schoeneman moved into her Kendal at Lexington apartment in November 2020. And, while she had to self-quarantine for 10 days due to the Covid-19 protocols of the time, it didn’t take her long to learn that her favorite things about living here are being in the mountains and “the people that live here.”

“Something that was a surprise to me is that I really like living among other older people,” Dorothy says. “They are kind to each other and to themselves.”

Dorothy says it’s nice to be with people who are very accepting of who you are and what you’re capable of. “It’s nice to be able to say, ‘I don’t hear so well, or I don’t see so well,’ and still be an active member of a community.”

Dorothy is indeed an active member of the community!

Mornings: “I am a breakfast first person,” says Dorothy. “The only other thing I do before breakfast is feed the cat, so I have peace.” Dorothy says she enjoys having breakfast on her patio where she can see the mountains and people out walking their dogs. Next, she checks her Day-Timer to see her appointments for the day. “Today I had an interview with Kevan at 9 o’clock. At 11 o’clock I’m delivering meals to shut-ins.” Dorothy has volunteer activities on and off the Kendal campus. “The other thing I normally do on Mondays is respite care for Rockbridge Area Hospice. I read to a person with dementia so her daughter can do the grocery shopping and other things she needs to do.” Dorothy says volunteering in the community is important because it’s a way to meet people in town and contribute to the community. Dorothy says most mornings she attends a Fitness Center program. Her favorite programs are aqua aerobics, strength and stretch, and the weight room. Like many residents of Kendal at Lexington, Dorothy is a fan of the Fitness Center staff. “Victoria and Kristen – their knowledge and enthusiasm is absolutely amazing!”

Afternoons: For Dorothy, afternoons start with a good meal. “I try to have one meal in the Dining Room,” she says. “Sometimes it’s lunch, sometimes it’s dinner, sometimes I take it home with me. It all depends on my activities.” Dorothy says some of her volunteer efforts are in the afternoon, plus there are other Kendal cultural, recreational, educational and leisure programs that keep her busy. She serves on several resident committees, including Culture and Entertainment, Volunteer, Library and Food committees. And Dorothy says she enjoys the Wednesday afternoon potpourri events. “We have had some excellent lectures.” As the name suggests, residents’ potpourri is a mixture of events, ranging from in-person lectures to music concerts to video documentaries. Recently, there was even a wine tasting from a local wine shop – with residents pouring the samples.

Evenings: Dorothy says her evenings are comprised of a variety of programs, too. “I sometimes meet with friends for a glass of wine,” she says. She also attends movies in Kendal Hall twice a week, and she takes advantage of the beauty of the KaLex campus and its surroundings by simply being outside. “I love to go for a walk in the evenings. I walk the campus.” She especially enjoys her evening walks in the summer when the fireflies emerge. “It’s a nice time to be out.”

Dorothy says one of her concerns when deciding to move from Richmond, Virginia, to Kendal at Lexington was whether it would be difficult to find good doctors and medical services. She was relieved to learn she had nothing to worry about. “I have found services to be extraordinarily good,” says Dorothy. “Once I got into the Carilion system, it has not been difficult to get services.”

Other things Dorothy likes about living here: “The fact that it is open and not regimented,” she says. “People can make their own determination of how they want to live within the community.”