Ruth Krowski moved to assisted living at the Grand Hills Castle about a year and a half ago. The 86-year old is living with Parkinson’s Disease.
“We couldn’t regulate my medication and I needed a place that could help me do that much better,” she says. “I leave a lot of major decisions up to my three daughters and son. My daughters looked at many places and found that they liked the Grand Hills Castle the best.”
Ruth has never looked back. She enjoys life in a Castle Senior Living community.
“I like the people here very much. I always tell the aides that anyone who can do what they do on a daily basis has to be great.
“I really connect with them and we giggle a lot. They will come in my room and talk to me. They are very good to the residents here – so good to them. I often wonder how they do it, especially now.”
Living through the COVID-19 pandemic is unlike anything Ruth has ever experienced.
“I have to stay hopeful,” she says. “I’m not always a person that can do that. Sometimes I get nervous, but I want to stay positive and I have to do that. I think I’ve been holding up pretty well.”
Ruth says she stays mostly in her room, and it doesn’t bother her for residents to sit at separate tables for their meals. Adult coloring books help her pass the time. It’s become her new favorite hobby.
“When I first arrived at the Grand Hills Castle, I met a couple of the ladies and we’re now close so I catch up with them a lot. I walk inside around the building in the morning after exercises and then after supper.
“My four kids call me every day. My daughter comes here once a week because she does my laundry. She talks to me through the window. My son and his wife also stop by my window. It would be terrible for me if I couldn’t see them. They bring me treats. I think it’s harder for them than it is for me. I’m still around people here. My daughter who lives in Madison comes when she can because of the virus, and I have a daughter in Florida and we talk frequently.”
Ruth, who was born and raised on Milwaukee’s south side, says she had a good upbringing along with her sister. Her father worked in a machine shop and her mother stayed at home.
“She showed me how to sew,” Ruth recalls. “I sewed every stich of clothing that I owned over the years. My grandmother taught me how to knit, so I made mittens and scarves for all my kids and grandkids.”
Ruth attended Mound Street School and then Bayview High School. She enrolled at Milwaukee Accredited Beauty School and was a beautician for a few years until her late husband, John, got out of the Army after serving in the Korean War and they decided to start a family.
When asked what she believes is her most remarkable accomplishment in life, Ruth provided an immediate answer.
“My children. They turned out great. I stayed home all the time with my kids and I loved it. It’s a treat to be a stay-at-home mother.
“I babysat four of my eight grandchildren and cared for many kids over the years. It was my hobby. Those grandkids are so good to me. You should see the many cards that they send to me in the mail now. I’m so proud of them.”