What do butterflies, flower buds and SaddleBrooke residents have in common? Answer: They are all bursting forth with new Spring energy. To celebrate SaddleBrooke’s post-vaccination emergence, Senior Village wanted to spread much-needed cheer to randomly selected members by delivering May baskets provided by a special Gift Fund.

Friendly Contact and Fun with Friends team leaders Peggy Ogier and Lois Violanti divided the basket project into three phases: cookie baking, basket prep and deliveries. They enlisted Bonnie Barazani and Jeanne Ragan to coordinate the work of the volunteers. The four organizers agreed that the best part of this project was “putting smiles on people’s faces which hadn’t had smiles for the past year.”

Senior Village volunteers and other community residents gathered mixing bowls, measuring spoons and ingredients and prepared dozens of favorite recipes…sugar, molasses, and chocolate chip cookies, almond wafers, brownies, Oreo balls, biscotti, and breads like blueberry, date, and banana. What a heavenly assortment!

On Saturday, May 1 it was time to prepare the baskets. In addition to baked goodies, tables were crowded with items such as lotions and sanitizers, pens and notepads, packets of greeting cards made by the Card Crafters Club, homemade strawberry jam from Farmer’s Market, decorated paper purses with jelly bellies or a small atlas slipped inside, and tea towels. Each basket contained an assortment of items with a festive bow and a card to the recipient addressed in eloquent calligraphy.

Beginning at 3:30 p.m., 17 volunteer drivers picked up their gift baskets and cookie boxes for delivery. They spent the afternoon visiting the selected Senior Village members, saying hello, presenting the baskets and sharing in the fun of digging into the basket surprises.

Uplifting spirits is one of the goals of Senior Village, whether it be by providing transportation, handling fix-it projects around the house, hooking up electronics or simply bringing joy to members.

As one Village recipient commented: “We can't imagine how much effort went into creating all of those things…[We] are so, so appreciative for the "Random Act of Kindness" from Senior Village. There is so much goodness in the world, and you are a part of that.”

If you would like to be a member of Senior Village, call (520) 314-1042. Annual dues are $60 for a single and $96 for a household. To register as a volunteer, go online to www.seniorvillage.org. Donations may be sent to the 501c3 Senior Village at PO Box 8584, Tucson, AZ 85738.

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