NEWS FLASH

If you follow the St Lawrence Shakespeare Festival, then you are aware of the online workshops and 1 on 1 sessions they are offering in music and theatre. One that caught my eye for us was Heidi Reimer’s “Writing Creatively” an 8 week online exploration being offered on Wednesday evenings. We have been offered a great deal on the workshop for Walker House members and with a subsidy from our program dollars, the experience can be yours for just $100! That’s only $12.50 a session to work with Heidi. I encourage you to check out the course description and let me know quickly if this is for you because it begins next week. If you have been putting off dreams of being a creative writer, make this your time!

 

October 22 -- Nothing Gold Can Stay 

This line of poetry by Robert Frost captures the melancholy feeling that autumn evokes in many of us. The bright fall colours  that blaze in the orange pumpkins and the reds, golds, and yellows of the falling leaves help us hold on to the bright summer sun for a little bit longer. Una reassured us this week at our Monday Morning Mindfulness about powerful sun light and how even on a gloomy day or in the cold winter it is ever present and we can draw on its memory to warm ourselves. We are certainly doing our best to keep going outdoors but also virtually over the phone or computer and I encourage you to reach out if you need a hand connecting to us. We had our largest group to date at our walking club last week when we took our field trip to Limerick Forest to wander among the trees. It was such a good time! If you have not found our Walker House Facebook page yet, please do. I shared some photos of a few of the charming tree huggers I found there and it’s a great way to stay in touch and see some familiar faces.

 

This Thursday October 22nd, we will be meeting at the back of Walker House at 1pm and you can take part in an Urban Pole clinic with Sue Turner followed by a walk in the park or you can skip the clinic and start walking right away. There is no charge for the lesson for members and Sue will cover both types of poles and review your technique if it’s been awhile, so I encourage everyone to drop by. I have a set of the Stability Poles for sale if you would like to try them out; they allow for more confidence walking with knee or hip issues. The fitness poles are designed to boost your walk and engage upper body muscles while you exercise.  Katarina’s is staying open if anyone cares for a refreshment break on the way back to your cars, too.  Our group wants to check out the Brock Trail  on October 29th at 1pm. It’s too long to stroll the entirety in one day, so I am proposing that we meet at the Brockville Tourism office on Market Street and do the eastern waterfront loop which will include Blockhouse Island, the marina, and the Aquatarium. As always, we will have  a variety of speeds and distances and there is a place for everyone. You may want to make sure you have a mask in case there is a warm patio or some shopping that calls to you while we are in the neighbourhood.

 

Here at home, the power was turned back on at Walker House today so my answering machine will be back in business at 613-925-5300. I will need to take registrations for our upcoming workshop streaming live for us from the Royal Botanical Gardens on Friday October 30th. Karin will be our host again, but this time over Zoom so we can see her in action with all of her subjects. The fall workshop she is presenting for us  is about pumpkins, squash and gourds. I’ll be able to send you a Zoom link for the session the day before but am not able to publish it in the paper so just drop me a line to let me know of your interest and if you need help. Karin did a great job giving us a tour of the gardens over the phone, so I am anticipating this live view into their space. Please feel free to invite any gardening friends who would enjoy the experience.

Stay well and stay happy!

October 16 -- Physically Distanced, but Still Together. 

This weekend I found many things to be thankful for, and I hope you did too. We gathered with cousins at an old resort in the Ottawa valley since we are too many to host in one of our houses. Each family had a rustic cabin with decks and fire pits, and we put on warm layers and made the best of it in the great outdoors. I know many of you are doing the same in order to meet up with friends and our walking club is a good example of how we can remain physically distanced, but still together. Our plan this week is to head for the Limerick Forest Visitor’s Centre for 1pm on Thursday and walk on the trail. It’s a nice flat path to walk in any season, but especially pretty in the fall and I invite you to make your way there and join us. A few weeks ago when we visited, the outhouses were open and if you head to www.Limerickforest.ca you’ll find directions and a printable trail map. Coming up on October 22nd we have an Urban Pole clinic with Sue Turner at 1pm at Walker House followed by a walk. This is great for anyone looking for a refresher on their technique or new to using Urban Poles. We have a rain date on October 29th and there is no charge for Walker House members.

In Seniors Centre Without Walls news, we have our Bi-Weekly Faith Lift with Rev Tracey on October 15th and October 29th at 10:30 and Una will be our facilitator for Monday Morning Mindfulness on October 19th at 11. Continuing through October every Tuesday at 11 we have a fun session with trivia and brain teasers with Mary. You can call in to your event from any phone to 1-866-279-1594 and enter passcode 595056 when prompted. 

It was nice to see many of you last week at our Harvest take-out lunch and at our board meeting. I appreciate every chance we get to visit and all your support as Walker House begins to rebuild. I’m documenting each stage and look forward to the day when we are freshly repaired, open to visitors, and all this is just a collection of photos in our album.

 

October 8 -- Happy Thanksgiving 

I feel like I am getting my feet underneath me again after the shock of my discovery last Monday. A property restoration company has put in long hours each day with fans and dehumidifiers going and most of the affected materials have been removed. Once their work is complete and the house is dried out, the rebuilding of walls and floors will begin. The town’s insurance covers this type of flood loss so everything will be alright in the end. The west side of the building was largely untouched with the worst damage to the kitchen and almost all of your supplies were safely stored out of harm’s way or in plastic totes. As you may have noticed, the phone has been out of order and will be until the power is restored to the entire building. I have a temporary office set up now at home and you can reach me by email or leave a message with Donna or Kaitlyn at town hall by phone (613-925-2812) and they will pass it on to me. I am working my way back through emails from last week and want to thank you for your patience if you have been waiting for a reply. In particular, if you have been trying to register for our take-out Harvest Lunch on Wednesday the 7th, please just drop in at the back lawn after 11:30 and I will have caramel streusel apple pie, roasted pumpkin soup, and a dinner roll ready for you to pick up. The forecast looks questionable, but if the sun is shining and you’d like to picnic, just bring a chair and you are welcome to stay. I am not made of sugar and I’ll have a shelter set up beside the parking lot so I’ll be there even in the rain.

There has been an update to Zoom which now requires a password to join a session, so I am sending out new links for our weekly meets with passwords. Our craft group had planned to work on fingerless gloves this week, but I’m going to have to bump that back to October 13th to allow me access to the kits I’ve made up for you.  Another special Zoom event will take place on October 30th at 1pm so mark your calendars. I’ve booked an online workshop with the Royal Botanical Garden that is very seasonally themed about pumpkins and squash. We use these fruit as decorations and food typically in the fall, but where do they come from and why do we use them? Joined live with our instructor from the gardens in Burlington we will discover the varieties of squash, their origin, and cultural uses of these interesting plants globally. Karin did a fabulous job with us on the phone with our virtual tour in the summer, so I’m very pleased with the variety of adult online workshops they are offering and hope we can continue through the winter to escape to their beautiful centre. 

Our walking group continues to meet every Thursday at 1pm. This week we will leave from the Amphitheatre again and walk the waterfront. We would like to take the show on the road and plan to meet at the Limerick Forest visitor centre on October 15th at 1:00 and the following week October 22 Sue Turner will join us behind Walker House for an Urban Pole clinic followed by a walk. If you have poles and want a refresher on your technique or if you are new to Urban Poles, this is for you. In the event of rain, the clinic will move to October 29th.

I know life is a challenge these days, but I wish for all of you a warm Thanksgiving weekend with time for reflection and catching up with family and friends whether it be outside for a stroll, over the phone, or via Skype. In this time of uncertainty there is one thing I am certain of – this will pass and we will all be just fine if we reach out to help each other get through this together. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

October 1 -- 2020- The Year That Keeps on Giving!

I had pre-written a lengthy column in advance for this week outlining the options for our many card players in the coming months but if 2020 has taught us anything it’s to expect the unexpected. Upon entering Walker House on Monday morning I heard the loud rush of water and found it pouring from the ceilings. From the amount of damage, it looks like it was doing so for most of the weekend and the source was found to be a damaged connector in one of the upstairs washroom pipes. There are still a lot of unanswered questions, but the drying out and cleaning up has begun and the insurance company  will,  I’m sure, give me some answers and a timeline in the coming days. As we know, every cloud has a silver lining and we are fortunate that this happened just as the work in our kitchen was scheduled to begin, rather than waiting to crash down upon our finished work. It’s shocking to see the walls and floors stripped back to the studs but we will get through this as just one more hurdle to jump this year.

I will continue to offer our virtual programming and my hope is to find an alternate kitchen to work from so that I can still have our Harvest Lunch in the yard as planned on October 7th. Our Weekly Faith Lift is moving to an alternate week schedule in October with Rev. Tracey joining us only on the 15th and 29th at 10:30.  We will have both Monday Morning Mindfulness and Use Your Noodle as usual next week but I am going to delay releasing an extended schedule for now so I don’t overcommit.  Our walking club had a good showing and it was decided to meet for now on Thursdays at 1pm for a walk outdoors. This week we will meet at the amphitheatre by the Shakespeare ticket booth for our walk. We naturally divided into twos and threes according to speed and we all enjoyed a visit and some fresh air and I invite anyone who would like to join us. Keep on smiling my friends; it’s already October and 2021 is right around the corner now!

September 24 -- It’s Harvest Time! 

 

It doesn’t surprise me that numbers on a couple of our calls is lower these days as everyone tries to soak in as much sunshine as they can and store it for the winter. Should you decide to join us for some virtual fun though, we are still Zooming for crafts and coffee every Tuesday afternoon at 1 and Sharon Stein is bringing some drawing lessons to the Wednesday afternoon zoom session that also take place at 1. Have a sketch pad and some pencils ready and give it a try.

 

Seniors Centre Without Walls continues each week with a Monday Morning Mindfulness (11am), Use Your Noodle (trivia and teasers on Tuesday at 11), and our Weekly Faith Lift each Thursday morning with Reverend Tracy Smith at 10:30.  The number to call in for those events is always 1-866-279-1594 with 595056 as our participant code. This week on Wed the 23rd we have our first ever autobiography as Frank Taker tells the story of his childhood at 2pm.  

 

As long as this lovely fall weather holds, various groups are meeting on the lawn at the same time as their indoor schedules. I’ll have a calendar for October available in next week’s paper and you can pick up a printed copy in person on Wednesday October 7thth when you drop by for a take-out Harvest Lunch. As much as it drove Anne and Irene to distraction to have the enormous pumpkin plants take over our garden this summer, it will be a fitting reward to enjoy homemade pumpkin and apple soup. We managed very well at keeping our social distance during our birthday party so I don’t see any need to register for a time slot; just let me know that you are coming so I can make enough dessert. Drop by between 11:30 and 1 to the back yard. You are welcome to pick up soup and dessert to go, or bring a lawn chair and stay for a picnic. If the weather is too rainy for me to stay outside that long (and I’m pretty tough) then we will bump it to Thursday.

 

Register by email walkerhouse@prescott.ca or phone me at 613-925-5300. There is no charge for lunch, but I want to share some other good news: we have finally worked the kinks out of our bank account and we can take e-transfers for payments. You will always be able to drop cheques off, but now you will also be able to send us payment in your pyjamas through your online bank. If you’ve never made online payments, then this is a great time to learn how as I’m booking tech classes for us to help support you through the winter. My first priorities are Zoom, entertainment apps like Facebook, Netflix, YouTube, and the Ontario library app that will allow you to access books, and audio books for free from your local library. Practical topics will also be covered including on-line grocery orders, safe online shopping, and how to make e-transfers. Let me know if I am missing anything and I am happy to oblige. Enjoy your week, everyone!

Aug 27th -- Happy Belated Birthdays! 

 

I won’t be publishing a monthly calendar for September; instead I’d like to plan out our schedule a week or two in advance for a while to allow for more flexibility to bring in new partners to deliver virtual and outdoor events. The best ways to keep in the loop are to sign up for our weekly newsletter by reaching out me at walkerhouse@prescott.ca and to subscribe to the South Grenville Journal who graciously publishes my Walker House News and other great regional content.

 

 

 

 

WALKER HOUSEAUGUST

SUN

MON

TUE

WED

THU

FRI

SAT

Seniors 

Centre

Without

Walls

   

01

Join us for some fun over the phone!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

02

03

04

05

06

07

08

 

Civic Holiday!

 

 

 

 

 

09

10

11

12

13

14

15

 

Monday Morning Mindfulness with Una – 11am

Use Your Noodle with Mary -11am

 

Weekly Faith Lift with Rev. Tracey

10:30

Virtual Tour, Royal Botanical Garden -2pm *

 

16

17

18

19

20

21

22

 

Monday Morning Mindfulness with Winhara– 11am

Use Your Noodle with Mary -11am

Armchair Travel with Vicki –Sydney Opera House 2pm *

Weekly Faith Lift with Rev. Tracey

10:30

5 Minute Mysteries with Susan 2pm

 

23

24

25

26

27

28

29

 

Monday Morning Mindfulness with Una – 11am

Use Your Noodle with Mary -11am

Member Biography with Jo 2pm

Weekly Faith Lift with Rev. Tracey

10:30

Read me a Story – 2pm

 

30

31

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monday Morning Mindfulness with Winhara – 11am

 

 

 

 

 

Steps to connect to any programs:

1)     Dial 1-866-279-1594

2)     Enter the passcode 595056 when prompted, then #

3)     Say your name, then press #

MosaiCanada 150 Topiary Exhibit

Here is the chair from our chair workshop, with members Rosemary and Steven enjoying their creations.