Friday, July 8, 2011

Jean's Story & the Pond Tour for the Hospice 2011

Debbie Sperling explains the story behind the annual Pond Tour for the Hospice best.

Debbie writes, "My sister Jean loved gardening and nature and my garden's pond. After she was diagonsed  with terminal colon cancer in February 2009, she would visit as often as possible. I treasured the times I watched her pain and tension disappear as she sat pondering."

"In July, Jean and I toured the Dr. Bob Kemp Hospice together. She was nervous at first, but like all those times we sat looking over the pond, her anxiety melted away as she took in the beauty of the home and the smiling compassion of the staff...Within minutes Jean decided to spend her final weeks there."

"Jean's condition improved for a time thanks to the world class palliative care she received...."

"Jean often talked about making one more visit to my place so she could "sit by the pond", but regretably she never felt up to it. Instead, many times during those final weeks I sat pondside talking to her on the phone, describing which birds had visited that day, talking about the koi and the water plants, holding out the phone so she could hear the croaking frogs and the trilling cicadas. I will never forget all those preicious moments..."

"While under the wings of the Hospice, our family received exceptional medical, emotional and spiritual care at no charge. Jean passed on nurtured, painless and at peace... Our experience as a family made us want to give back to the Hospice. Jean's fancy for the pond gave me a vision for this project. She would have loved this tour. She would have bought tickets in a heartbeat. She would have toured both days reveling in the tranquility, imagery, and sensory stimulation of every pond she could get to."

To read the Jean's Story in full click here.

This year's Pond Tour for the Hospice will be held this weekend (July 9th and 10th) and is a self-directed tour of gardens located in the Golden Horseshoe area. There are 23 properties on this year's tour with a wide range of water features including waterfalls, streams and ponds. There are thousands of dollars in prizes to be won and even a photography contest to enter.

Debbie Sperling's Garden and Pond 

Last year's tour was outstanding and so I am really looking forward to this year's event. Tickets are $25 and all the proceeds go to: the Stedman Community Hospice, the McNally House Hospice, and the Dr. Bob Kemp Hospice.

For details on the tour and ticket information, please click the link: Pond Tour for the Hospice 2011.


  1. Oh, my goodness! This is gorgeous! I'd love to have a water garden as lovely as this. Stunning photographs as always, Jennifer!

  2. What a lovely memory of a courageous woman. :)

  3. My blood pressure went down a few points by looking at her work matched with the beautiful photography. Thanks for sharing.


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