by Katherine Legge
The fall season is upon us! The recreation department is in full swing. The department is fully staffed with Danielle, Elyse, Natasha, Katherine, Antoinette and Ellen. So this season you can expect to see a lot of new and fun programs. Recently Elyse started a knitting group with some of the ladies. Their latest project has been making shawls for some of the folks as we approach the winter months and the weather gets a bit chillier. We have also started a men’s group for our gentlemen that live here. We have been building bird houses, playing pool, sports trivia and in the upcoming weeks we will be doing more activities around fishing and hunting.
Every week we will be doing a special event. These events will range from such things as the renewal of wedding vows between two residents, to a grandparents day celebration. We will also be bringing new and exciting activities to the newly renovated DVH. In addition, our music therapists have started a choir every Tuesday afternoon in which they will be singing seasonal songs with the residents to fill our halls with joy.
In the upcoming months we will be having some large events that will include both our residents and the families and friends of Delta View.
To kick off the fall season, we will be holding our second annual Fall Fair on Saturday October 26 from 10:00-2:00pm. Not too long after we will be having our Annual Bazaar in November, which will include resident craft projects and mouth watering baked goods
To keep up to date with all of the activities that are occurring throughout the next couple of months please feel free to look at the calendars, the special event notices or even ask one of the recreation staff (Hint: Look for the ones with red tops and black pants!)
Doreen & Chester Miller — Explorers, Artists, Rock Hounds!
by Laurie Deacon, Spiritual Care
Born in Saskatchewan 100 miles from Saskatoon, Chester says that his bedroom consisted of an old caboose with wagon wheels that was used to move to their homestead. There they built their original house, which over the years saw many expansions.
Growing up, he was fascinated with Amelia Earhart and remembers his teacher giving all the children the day off to see his first airplane (biplane) in 1932. As a youth he experienced many jobs, including tree planting. Two days into his job as a tree planter, Chester and his buddy decided to try something new, and agreed to work on the ships. Chester worked in the engine room on various ships for over ten years, including a German ship, outfitted by the British after the war. This ship was used to bring 650 emigrants (DP’s – ie. Displaced Persons) from Bremerhaven, Germany to Canada each month after the war. He also sailed the North Sea and the Caribbean. Finally he sailed for 2 years on the Great Lakes before moving to James Island where he worked in a factory creating nitroglycerin. Who would have thought that he would need the same substance years later for his heart!
Doreen was born in Vancouver – only because her mother went into labour at the border and was turned back to give birth in Vancouver. She lived on a houseboat on Lake Okanagan as her father was a logger in the area. When Doreen was only 6, her baby sister Edna was born but her mother died during childbirth. Doreen’s adventurous spirit was learned early on, as a result of the many moves she endured with her family. She was often leaned on to help provide support to the other girls. She also learned at an early age how to sew her own clothes and taught herself knitting and crocheting. Necessity is the mother of invention! Many of her quilts, and afghans that she created are seen around Delta View.
It wasn’t until a New Year’s Eve party to bring in the year 1956 that Chester set eyes on Doreen and knew he would be content. Walking over to Doreen, Chester held out his hand and asked her to marry him. She said that she would like to think about it, but 6 months later, they married in Sidney. After they married, they travelled and Doreen would insist on picking up rocks. Chester threw them out – only once in their marriage. After a visit to family members in the States that were rock hounds, Chester and Doreen began to collect rocks together. Doreen learned how to solder and cut silver. Chester would cut and polish the rock. Together they made beautiful jewelry and have won awards for their creative designs.
They had Lori in 1968 and Mark two years later. They continued to enjoy travelling when Chester could take time off work. He then worked for BC Ferries as a steward and eventually became the Chief Steward in 1968. They have travelled all over North America.
When Chester retired, they hopped into the camperized van and travelled from July 1, 1990 to April 1991. The most amazing thing about that trip: they didn’t have one argument!
Highlights of their travels include:
- Fresh lobster and corn on the cob in Prince Edward Island.
- Visiting the Smithsonian in Washington DC.
- Christmas in New Orleans.
- Camping in the trench around the Everglades complete with alligators galore!
- Driving the Big Bend along the Rio Grande in Texas, avoiding the short but fierce wild pigs (Havalinas).
- Visiting the Hope Slide only months after the mountain fell. As Chester says, “I have never felt so small and insignificant.”
Chester and Doreen are always holding hands as they make their way through the halls. Chester says, “She’s the best thing that ever happened to me!”
Guess what surprising lessons Chester signed up for when he was 80?
After a life working on the water, Chester finally signed up for swimming lessons.