Evelyn Kapicka loves to share her extensive collection of owls with visitors to her cozy corner apartment at The Danish Home of Chicago. Why owls? Because, she explains, her maiden name of Moudry means “a wise person” in Czech. The 94-year-old picked an appropriate collectible, because she is as bright as they come.
Evelyn is also happy to share how much she is enjoying life at the boutique retirement community in the historic neighborhood of Norwood Park. Along with her owl paintings, clothing, jewelry, figurines and more, she displays a scrapbook of the many programs and activities happening at The Danish Home. One of them was a recent “show and tell” in which she shared her beloved collection with staff and other residents.
Indeed, the affable senior is demonstrably eager to join in all The Danish Home has to offer. “I don’t miss anything going on here!” said Evelyn, whose scrapbook has empty pages waiting to be filled with future events.
Upon the recommendation of her son, retired physician Bob Kapicka, and his wife Barb Anderson, a nurse, Evelyn moved to The Danish Home last August after a bad fall and subsequent rehab. Bob’s late uncle Milton was also a resident, a man who had never lived anywhere but the house in which he was born. Aware of the home through Barb’s friendship with Amy Swanson, wife of president and CEO Scott Swanson, the couple felt strongly that Milton and Evelyn would thrive at The Danish Home.
“The Danish Home’s small size, location in the heart of an established neighborhood, long heritage, low staff turnover, and not-for-profit status makes it a better choice,” said Bob. Added Barb, “The nurses and all the staff are so caring; they treat residents like family and know their personal needs and wants.” Both Bob and Barb volunteer at The Danish Home’s annual events.
Like many residents, Evelyn makes much of The Danish Home’s delicious meals and tailor-made menu options. On her second day there, she requested her favorite breakfast of half an English muffin and a poached egg. “They made it for me!” She particularly enjoys dining with all residents, regardless of their care needs, in one communal setting.
“Everyone is so nice; I’ve made so many friends here.” One is her neighbor across the hall, who remarked upon meeting Evelyn that she resembles a friend of hers. “It turns out her friend is my aunt!” said Evelyn. “What a small world!”
“People blossom here, and Evelyn is no exception,” said Scott Swanson.
“I love it here,” affirmed Evelyn, the late afternoon sun shining on her friendly smile. “I couldn’t ask for anything better.”