Over The Back Fence

Jul 19th, 2018 | By | Category: Over The Back Fence

Volunteer Profile…

As often happens, someone becomes an avid volunteer at a retirement or nursing home after a loved one has been a resident at the facility, and he or she wants to pass on compassion and assistance to those who still live in the home.

That’s what happened when Joan Noel, after her mother was a resident at the Hunt Club Manor, saw how much she could offer to a place that was a special home to her loved one for so man years.

Now Noel spends five, and sometimes seven, days a week spending anywhere from four to eight hours at a time bringing comfort and enjoyment to those who call Hunt Club Manor home. She arranges birthday parties, helps at bingo, helps with coffee and lunch times, plays cards, and anything else that will keep the minds of residents active.

Noel says that she gets as much enjoyment out of her dedication as a volunteer as she gives out. But Brittany Bos, Director of Recreation at the home, says Noel’s help goes beyond that of just being a volunteer.

“She is the first one to offer assistance, and makes everyone at Hunt Club Manor feel welcomed and appreciated with her amazing sense of humour, fantastic smile and always offering encouragement or a listening ear when needed. Hunt Club Manor wouldn’t be such a wonderful place to live and work without having such a valuable volunteer as Joan.”

Y@H congratulates Joan Noel for the many, many hours as a dedicated and compassionate volunteer she devotes to those who call Hunt Club Manor home.

Remember When …

The month of July is memorable in many ways. Canadian history was made in the year 1534, when Jacques Cartier, in the name of the King of France, took possession of mainland Canada.

Long before the computer became such an important implement in our working lives, William Austin Burt of Michigan patented the very first typewriter … that was on July 23, 1829.

It was eighteen years ago this month, when a young Tiger Woods won the British Open to become the youngest player to win the career Grand Slam of golf.

One has to wonder how many couples are still together after the biggest wedding ceremony in history took place in New York City on July 22, 1982. Twenty-two hundred couples were married by the Reverend Sun Myng Moon of the Unification Church.

Did it stop the plague? In 1439, on July 16th, kissing was banned in England in an attempt to put a halt to the dreaded disease that was killing people by the hundreds.

The ‘who’s on first’ duo of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello ended their life-long comedy routine with an announcement on July 14, 1957. No reason was given, but millions were saddened to learn the famous pair had parted ways.

Of course, July 8 will always remain one of the most important historical events in Canadian history. It was on that day, in 1608, that Samuel de Champlain established the first French settlement in Canada.

Many important people came into the world in July, some centuries apart, but it was in the month of July that John Glenn, author Earl Stanley Gardiner, Ginger Rogers and Dan Aykroyd all saw their first light of day.

Who Said What …

“I’m a Quebecker, I was born alienated.’’

– Laurier LaPierre, Canadian historian and broadcaster

Funny You Should Ask

Q: Although I have retired, I have taken on a part-time job, which is really a way of keeping busy after a very active career. However, I can no longer afford to have the help I once enjoyed in my home, so it now falls to me and my husband, and  neither of us has any talent for housekeeping.

We would like to get ourselves organized so that we can keep on top of things in our home without outside help. By nature, I have to admit, neither of us are terribly organized, but we would like to know if there are resources available to help us get ourselves set up in some sort of pattern to keep things running smoothly on the home front without bringing in hired help.

A: Bringing in outside help, even on a consulting basis, is going to cost you money. So, we are going to suggest that you go to your public library and ask for books on personal organization. There is also an excellent small book called The One Minute Organizer by Donna Smallin. It covers absolutely every phase of things to do in the home to get your place in order. Ask at your local library or a local book store if the book is still in print. We are reluctant to recommend one book over another, but this one we are familiar with, and we’re sure there are others out there to help you get your home life in order. Good luck.

This month in History

July 17, 1959

The Emergency Measures Organization was founded in Ottawa to deal with possible nuclear attack and to protect the public.

The Farm Scene

Just how big are they, you might ask. Well, here are some weights of a few of the more common animals in our universe, and a few you may never lay eyes on personally, but may wonder what they weigh in at.

These are average: chicken 2 kg; turkey 6-10 kg; emu 45-50 kg; pig 100 kg; sheep 70-125 kg; veal calf 320 kg; quarter horse 544 kg; elk 420-600 kg; beef cattle 680 kg; elephant 7,425 kg.

Incidentally, at the time these weights were given by Ontario Agri-Centre in Guelph, the biggest pig on record came in at a whopping l,158 kg … that’s a lot of bacon!

Where Are They Now? 

Casey and Finnegan

Many in the 55-plus crowd will remember Casey and Finnegan. Their kids and grandkids often spent long hours watching the two loveable puppets that were key players on CBC’s Mr. Dressup TV show for many years.

The two puppets, a boy and a dog, played an important role in the tales from the Tickle Trunk and life lessons that Ernie Coombs, a.k.a. Mr. Dressup, passed on to generations of children.

But with the end of the show in 1996 and the death of Coombs in 2001, Casey and Finnegan are merely memories for most. Not so for Judith Lawrence, the Australian-born puppeteer and educator who brought Casey and Finnegan to life for some three decades.

Lawrence was not only the creator of these television icons, but also provided their voices. With a background in early childhood education and a long love of puppeteering, Lawrence was a natural for children’s programming.

When last heard from, she was living in British Columbia, where she spoke fondly of the puppets stored at her home. She occasionally pulls them out for performances, but for the most part has been retired since the 1990s. Lawrence, who likes to maintain her privacy, still occasionally hears from people who were fans of the show and says “people recognize her voice” from time to time.

Contributors to Over The Back Fence include: Mary Cook, Randy Ray and Mark Kearney.

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