Isabel’s Corner

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 5th September 2015
Here it is September already and our year has been very busy and dances and outings have been well attended.

Just as the newsletter went to print last time we lost one of our early volunteers Val Poole, who had not experienced good health for some time. She was 88 and mother of one of our members, Brian.

Also Sharon Lockyer’s father, Ron, passed away recently after a long illness. Our thoughts are with you Sharon, at this sad time.

Charles Marshall who celebrated with his twin brother recently had his 80th birthday. At about that time he had the misfortune to trip on the wheel of his walking frame and has had some complications, and as a result has been in and out of hospital. Hope you are now on the mend and back with us soon.

Our Treasurer Lloyd, also had a special birthday in June, his 70th and has now gone on a lovely overseas holiday.

Sandra Lowers mum Joyce had a nasty fall whilst showering. She wasn’t well for a while but is now on the mend.
Great to have Jennifer back after breaking her leg and what a wonderful recovery she has made, now back at Merry Makers and dancing around. We also had a visit from her sister Susan who always comes to dancing and catches up with us. Eileen has been missing for a few weeks as she had a cataract operation. Hope all has gone well.

A big welcome to the Beckhaus family, Ray, Jan and their son Brian (with rosy cheeks). They have settled at Lake Munmorah and bring Brian each Thursday night. Also welcome to young Tim who comes with his carer, also from Lake Munmorah. Tim loves his dancing and the faster the music, the faster he goes.

Elizabeth House has been missing from dancing for a while now. Some weeks ago when she had the flu, that was the first night she had missed in 28 years. What a record, which will take a long time to be broken, probably never.

Our President Michael and his wife Hazel are still away enjoying a well-earned break.

To anyone who is not well, we hope it won’t be long before you are 100% again and we are thinking of you.

To any new clients and carers, a big welcome and we hope you enjoy your time with us.

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 4th June 2015
Our president, Michael Wildman, has left for a 4 month holiday with wife Hazel. They are going to Canada and then on to England to visit relatives. A well-earned holiday & safe return. In his absence Michael Gleeson will take over as M.C. at our functions, thanks Michael, we know you will do a great job.

A welcome to Merry Makers family to Pia, Joe’s wife. She has settled in well & we already have her working hard.

A shock to us all was the sudden passing of Rex, who was the gentleman who brought in the knick-knacks for prizes each week and also his job was to cut the cake. He was a very interesting man and could put his hand to anything. He loved giving people things and making our clients happy. He will be greatly missed.

Also we lost Tony, he came to us by Chris Parker. Tony was a lovely gentle man & loved the dancing. He went into hospital for a serious operation & unfortunately he didn’t make it. He was only 57 years old.

A get well wish to Jenny Dixon who had the misfortune to slip in the wet and has fractured her femur. Jenny has been in hospital for weeks now and still has a lot ahead of her. A visit from her sister Susan from Tasmania would have picked her spirits up. Also our thoughts and get well wishes to Therese, the daughter of Charles Marshall, who is recovering from fracturing her foot. Therese and Delene (her sister) worked behind the scenes for Merry Makers for years, our thanks to them.

Ben Watson is off for a holiday to Shelley Beach with his carer. He is also going to join in the Fun Run from Woy Woy to Gosford for the third time. We hope you win Ben.

Nice to have Barry back driving the bus while Mike Wildman is away, thanks Barry.

A get well also to John Crocker, one of our clients who is back with us after having his eye removed from cancer. Quite a nasty operation but he is coping well. Welcome back John.

One of our clients had a stroke of good luck recently, Michael Hales was in Penrith with his parents visiting a club, had lunch then decided to play the pokies. Michael pulled off a $6000 win – he couldn’t believe it. I told you last letter is there nothing this fellow can’t do?

Two of our hard working carers have returned fresh and relaxed after a well earned break. Deanna went to Hamilton Island and Paula went to Bali. Now they have to settle back to the real life.

Winter is now with us so keep warm and try to avoid the dreaded flu. Please do not come to Merry Makers if you are not well as viruses spread very quickly.

A group of our people went to Illawarra Club Challenge of NSW for ten pin bowling. Michael Hales won a 1st and 3 3rd places. Cheryl got 2 1st places and  2 2nd places. Bryce won 2 1sts. Lynette won a 1st and Semone 2 3rds and Sean won 2 1sts. Congratulations, they have arrived home weighed down with a number of beautiful medals & all exhausted after a wonderful weekend away.

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 4th March 2015
Welcome back and hope 2015 is a good year for all. Everyone has settled back to dancing and great to see so many happy faces each and every week. Everyone I asked said they enjoyed Christmas and the 3 week break was very welcome.

On our outing to Port Stephens we were held up for some time waiting to get on the boat, all because the captain could not identify who were Merry Makers and who weren’t. In future when we have an away group outing can you please wear ID such as shirts, hats etc with the Merry Makers logo on them as it will make it much easier to enter the venues.

Michael Hales did a great job as MC at the Discobility Christmas Party. He was flat out getting around the various functions going on in each of the rooms. 300 attended and all ran smoothly. He has been invited back next year. Now he is having lessons for his drivers license, is there nothing he can’t do?

Congratulations also to Michelle’s son James who leaves school this year and is training in basketball to represent at the Special Olympics.

A big welcome to 2 new volunteers, Gabby and Arthur (who is Elvis). They have fitted in very well, which we appreciate.

Brian Poole, his sister Janet, and nephew Leslie are all off next month on a cruise. It will be a well deserved break for them, so we hope all goes well for them and the weather is kind.

A welcome also to Bethanie’s mum Jennifer who now brings Bethanie from Morisset as she is living back at home with her.

A get well wish to all our friends who are not well. We do think of you all. Hope to see Joe back with us soon. Thanks to Eladio for stepping in and organising the Music while Joe has been away. We are also very pleased to have Rex back as the clients enjoy the prizes that he brings for them.

Coming soon is the first Dinner Dance for the year. It will be a Country and Western night.  Save you money too as the Easter Show is coming at the end of March.

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 19th November 2014
Lloyd (our hard working Treasurer) and his lovely wife Esme are away enjoying a well earned holiday. They have gone on a cruise where they can leave the world behind and just eat, sleep and do whatever they wish. We wish them both a safe return.

A get well wish to Colleen (Michael Gleeson’s lovely wife) who is recovering after breaking a couple of ribs – hope you are on the mend and ready for your holiday. Our thoughts are also with Hazel (Michale Wildman’s lovely wife) who is also coping with some medical problems. We hope you get well soon.

Lisa, one of our members, has had the misfortune to fall in the bathroom, slipped on the wet floor. She hit the door and broke two bones in her foot, then trying to break her fall, broke two bones in her wrist. She arrived at dancing in a wheel chair, but the following week she walked in just with a surgical slipper on, how good is that!

Bob had a fall at home – caught his foot on the edge of the cement and whilst trying to save himself, ripped the skin off his arm. It was very nasty and Dr had to dress it every second day. However it has now healed and lucky to avoid infection.

Charles Marshall has had a few visits to the hospital recently – keep well, we need you.

Congratulations to Chris and Glenda on their wedding anniversary which they celebrated with a few wines and a picnic on the beach near their home at sundown. How romantic is that? And didn’t cost too much but was most enjoyable.

This will be my last column for the year – I have enjoyed keeping you all informed and hope you have all enjoyed reading our Newsletter which Chris Parker started this year. Any news and ideas are always welcome.

See you all in 2015

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 21st October 2014
A big welcome to our newest volunteer Gabby, who has settled in well and enjoys dancing. She goes home after each night exhausted.

Leanne Wright, Elaine, Kim and Sister-in-law are all off to the Gold Coast for a well earnd break away – Leanne very keen to see the dolphins. Have a great holiday and a safe return.

To any of our members who are not well, we think of you and hope you will be back with us soon.

Our next outing is to Kulnura, a very nice drive and hope everyone enjoys the day.

If anyone has suggestions for suitable outings, we would only be too pleased to hear about them. As we have been going 28 years we are having trouble coming up with new ideas.

Not long now till Xmas!!

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 1st October 2014
Recently Merry Makers held their Annual General Meeting. So much to discuss, we were there for 2.5 hours – wish we got parliamentary pay!! We now have a new chair person – Michael Wildman who accepted without hesitation. Looking forward to working with him and we all know he will serve our organisation very well. A big “Thank you” to Charles Marshall who has served us well over the years – he will still be with us at Merry Makers but will have less worry. “Thanks” to Chris Parker who is a very capable Secretary and to Lloyd who is still Treasurer and very good at his job. But behind these men is a good woman, and a working committee.

On Saturday 21/09/2014 Cheryl Hitchins, Warren Hearne and Martin Reidy participated in ten pin bowling for the Special Olympics. Cheryl and Warren played mixed pairs and took out second and third places. On the Sunday Martin was first in singles. Congratulations to all 3 for their efforts – Merry Makers are very proud of you.

“Thank you” to Debbie for having the foresight to take videos of our outings and Dinner Dances. Our members are having a lot of fun seeing themselves on the big screen.

Welcome back to Michael Gleeson, who with wife Colleen, have returned after months away travelling up north in their van and enjoying the countryside. They then enjoyed their on the Queenslander. Some people have all the luck!!

To any of our volunteers and members who are not well, we are thinking of you. Recover quickly and get back with us as we miss you.

Merry Makers are in shock and mourning for one of our lovely young women, Sandra Deakin, who died suddenly on 29/09/2014. She was very popular and well liked by us all. “Thanks” to Esme and Lloyd for being so kind to her, but she never complained. We will all miss you Sandra, and we hope you can rest in peace.

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 1st September 2014
Welcome back to Eileen, Jenny’s mum who had a short stay in hospital and an operation for a detached retina – it has been quite an ordeal for Eileen and very painful. Also our Chairman, Charles, had a visit to hospital but is on deck again now.

To any of our clients and carers who are not well at present – we miss you and hope to have you back with us soon.

On Sunday 10th, traveling on the bus I noticed that most of our clients depart the bus saying “goodbye” to all their seated friends, not one acknowledged the bus driver, it was as if they were invisible. I wonder if they realise the driver has been up since very early to pick up the bus etc, and the runs around collecting everyone. After driving all day he then has to do it all again, dropping everyone off home, then returns the bus to the depot to clean it. A very long day and never a complaint. So I think it would be a courtesy to greet the driver when you are picked up, and thank them when you are dropped home.

A big welcome to a new volunteer Paul, who has come to us as a bus driver and a volunteer, and also his mate Tony. Hope you enjoy being with us, we can always do with more drivers.

It was very nice to have a visit from Jenny’s sister Susan, who was up from Tasmania to check on Eileen’s progress and have a birthday celebration with her mum. She always mixes with the clients and enjoys a dance.

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 1st August 2014
Great to have a large number of clients attending our Thursday Night Dances & Outings as the weather has been very harsh. To anyone not well – hope you will be back with us soon.

Many of our clients are now starting to join in with our dances which is good to see. They are learning fast and it’s lovely to see smiles on their faces.

Until Next time – keep well.

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 17th July 2014
Last report I told you Esme lost her beloved sister, who was Rhonda’s Aunty. Two weeks later Rhonda lost her Mother, who was also Esme’s sister. So Es has lost two sisters within a short time. Our sympathy to the both.

Keadon McIlwraith, and her Mum Bev, dropped in to see us recently at Dancing. They are now living down the South Coast and both look well. The Three Ole Fellas, Bob (Committee), Charles Marshall (President) and Lloyd (Treasurer) have all celebrated Birthdays in June – must have been a good month.

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 6th June 2014
Recently we have said “Good Bye” to Bruce Churchill. Bruce was only with us for a short while and was a real pleasure to get to know. We hope he has settled into his new residence and will be very happy.

Our Thoughts & Prayers are with Lloyd and Esma who lost her lovely sister recently after a long illness. She was also an Aunty to Rhonda who organizes the tables for our Merry Makers Dinner Dances.

Pleased to have Eladio (one of our volunteers) back after being away for a couple of weeks. We will be missing Michael Gleeson for some weeks as he and Colleen are off on a well-earned break traveling up north in their van. They will enjoy the warmer weather while we wrap up in our winter woolies.

A big “Thank You” to the ukulele band who give up their evenings to pay us a visit occasionally. Our clients do enjoy a change in their music at times.

Great to see a smile back on Mike Wildman’s face after Hazel has returned from her trip to England to visit her dad and family. The family would have enjoyed the visit from Olivia, Mike’s granddaughter, who was company for Hazel. They also visited a couple of other countries on their return, quite an experience for young Olivia.

On the 16th May Bob and Isabel celebrated 55 years of marriage. Who said it wouldn’t last!!

Hope you all keep well and avoid the inevitable flu. See you all at dancing!!

Posted by Isabel Ridgewell – 20th April 2014
Recently we have lost one of our Merry Makers, Bradley Wannan aged 54. Bradley attended our dances regularly. We always knew where he was as we could hear him. Most of the time he would sit up on the floor against the wall and amuse himself watching everyone. He will be greatly missed by us all.

Leanne Wright is on the sick list and will be missing for some weeks. She had the misfortune to have a fall at home and break a bone in her foot. We miss you Leanne and hope you will be back to Merry Makers soon.

Maria has been missing for several weeks. She took herself for a cruise, so we hope she had a well earned break.

Congratulations to Denise Burrows, mother of Brett, who has recently announced her engagement. Hope you and your fiance will be very Happy Denise!

Hope everybody are having their flu injections. It’s time and helps keep the “bugs” away!!

Many of the clients have been lucky to attend the Royal Easter Show. They have enjoyed scary rides, food, hot dogs, fairy floss (yummy) and of course come home laden with show bags. All will go again next year.

Hazel Wildman and Granddaughter Olivia have “winged” their way to England to visit Hazel’s dad. We hope they enjoy their stay and have a safe return.

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