FOCUS ON SENIORS: Saying so long to the Williamsons

News Jun 09, 2016 by Kathryn Poirier Brant News

They are a team.  After more than 42 years together, Bruce and Karen Williamson function best when they have a project.

Whether it’s making a meal, setting up a campsite or hosting an international student, they have developed a routine with unconscious decisions about who does what and when.

Their latest project to move west is no different.

To the Williamsons, family trumps everything. Bruce and Karen moved to Brantford in 1984 in order to live near family. They felt it was important their children have loving, close relationships with their grandparents.

This move is also made for family. On June 1, they embark upon a journey that will take them across Canada, to Burnaby, B.C.

Thirty-two years later, Karen and Bruce are the grandparents and they want to have loving, close relationships with their grandchildren.

Their new home is within walking distance to family. Once settled, they will live just across a park from their daughter Heather, son-in-law Mike and their two young grandchildren who are ages seven and three.  

Bruce and Karen are well known and admired in Brantford for their community involvement. They will be missed. They leave behind a large, diverse circle of connections and friends.  

What other considerations led to this significant, life-altering decision?

Karen described four things that influenced their decision. After attending a retirement-leaving party for a friend who was packing it all in and moving west, she felt somewhat envious of their choice. She found herself wishing she and Bruce could do the same thing.

They also began to notice how much time and energy some of their friends spent caring for parents. This led them to question, with their children so far away, who would look after them when the time came?

With social media Bruce and Karen are able to keep in touch with their B.C. grandkids and their France grandchildren. Additionally, they have managed to travel once a year to visit them all. Even so, they began to feel they were missing out on things living so far away from their family.

The final influence was Karen’s involvement with the Grand River Council on Aging. It was there that she learned to view the world through an age-friendly filter.

After speaking with their son while visiting France in 2014, gaining his support, Bruce and Karen approached their daughter about the idea to move west. Both their kids were highly receptive to the idea.

Making a move of this magnitude and scope requires emotional strength and physical ability. Bruce and Karen are both reasonably healthy and decided that if they were going to make a move, they wanted to do it now, while they could handle the task themselves. They developed a timeline and created a plan to make it happen.

They gave themselves a year. They faced big goals such as selling Bruce’s business and listing their home for sale. They sold one car and began the incredible task of sorting through 42 years of accumulated belongings.  They announced their decision to the community.

With a week to go before the big day, most of the heavy work has been done. They have been feted and honoured by the community and their many close friends. So many people have invited them to lunch or dinner or just a quick coffee, just to say goodbye and good luck.

The celebrations have been bittersweet. Brantford was a wonderful community to raise a family, and the Williamsons say it was a privilege to live here for the past 32 years.

But now as June 1 approaches, Bruce and Karen are getting excited.  While they are sad to leave everyone behind, they are looking forward to this next phase of their lives.

They haven’t made any firm decisions about what they will do once settled in Burnaby, but they have looked at a few options. Daughter Heather sings in a big community chorus and Karen would love to join her. Bruce may join a men’s chorus, but as he says, “there’s no rush.”  

They want to have time to travel, too. Exploring beautiful B.C. is at the top of their list. As is making new friends and getting to know their community.

Deciding to take their time driving west, the Williamsons are making the journey a holiday before they settle into their condo. After the hard work and emotional toil of the past year, they deserve a vacation.

Bruce and Karen have given so much of themselves to the Brant community. It’s hard to see them go.

And yet, listening to the excitement and enthusiasm as they talk about their future, we can only wish them well on their new adventure. This next chapter in their lives is unwritten, yet it holds so much promise for the Williamson team.

FOCUS ON SENIORS: Saying so long to the Williamsons

Age-friendly awareness plays role in couple’s decision to move west

News Jun 09, 2016 by Kathryn Poirier Brant News

They are a team.  After more than 42 years together, Bruce and Karen Williamson function best when they have a project.

Whether it’s making a meal, setting up a campsite or hosting an international student, they have developed a routine with unconscious decisions about who does what and when.

Their latest project to move west is no different.

To the Williamsons, family trumps everything. Bruce and Karen moved to Brantford in 1984 in order to live near family. They felt it was important their children have loving, close relationships with their grandparents.

This move is also made for family. On June 1, they embark upon a journey that will take them across Canada, to Burnaby, B.C.

Thirty-two years later, Karen and Bruce are the grandparents and they want to have loving, close relationships with their grandchildren.

Their new home is within walking distance to family. Once settled, they will live just across a park from their daughter Heather, son-in-law Mike and their two young grandchildren who are ages seven and three.  

Bruce and Karen are well known and admired in Brantford for their community involvement. They will be missed. They leave behind a large, diverse circle of connections and friends.  

What other considerations led to this significant, life-altering decision?

Karen described four things that influenced their decision. After attending a retirement-leaving party for a friend who was packing it all in and moving west, she felt somewhat envious of their choice. She found herself wishing she and Bruce could do the same thing.

They also began to notice how much time and energy some of their friends spent caring for parents. This led them to question, with their children so far away, who would look after them when the time came?

With social media Bruce and Karen are able to keep in touch with their B.C. grandkids and their France grandchildren. Additionally, they have managed to travel once a year to visit them all. Even so, they began to feel they were missing out on things living so far away from their family.

The final influence was Karen’s involvement with the Grand River Council on Aging. It was there that she learned to view the world through an age-friendly filter.

After speaking with their son while visiting France in 2014, gaining his support, Bruce and Karen approached their daughter about the idea to move west. Both their kids were highly receptive to the idea.

Making a move of this magnitude and scope requires emotional strength and physical ability. Bruce and Karen are both reasonably healthy and decided that if they were going to make a move, they wanted to do it now, while they could handle the task themselves. They developed a timeline and created a plan to make it happen.

They gave themselves a year. They faced big goals such as selling Bruce’s business and listing their home for sale. They sold one car and began the incredible task of sorting through 42 years of accumulated belongings.  They announced their decision to the community.

With a week to go before the big day, most of the heavy work has been done. They have been feted and honoured by the community and their many close friends. So many people have invited them to lunch or dinner or just a quick coffee, just to say goodbye and good luck.

The celebrations have been bittersweet. Brantford was a wonderful community to raise a family, and the Williamsons say it was a privilege to live here for the past 32 years.

But now as June 1 approaches, Bruce and Karen are getting excited.  While they are sad to leave everyone behind, they are looking forward to this next phase of their lives.

They haven’t made any firm decisions about what they will do once settled in Burnaby, but they have looked at a few options. Daughter Heather sings in a big community chorus and Karen would love to join her. Bruce may join a men’s chorus, but as he says, “there’s no rush.”  

They want to have time to travel, too. Exploring beautiful B.C. is at the top of their list. As is making new friends and getting to know their community.

Deciding to take their time driving west, the Williamsons are making the journey a holiday before they settle into their condo. After the hard work and emotional toil of the past year, they deserve a vacation.

Bruce and Karen have given so much of themselves to the Brant community. It’s hard to see them go.

And yet, listening to the excitement and enthusiasm as they talk about their future, we can only wish them well on their new adventure. This next chapter in their lives is unwritten, yet it holds so much promise for the Williamson team.

FOCUS ON SENIORS: Saying so long to the Williamsons

Age-friendly awareness plays role in couple’s decision to move west

News Jun 09, 2016 by Kathryn Poirier Brant News

They are a team.  After more than 42 years together, Bruce and Karen Williamson function best when they have a project.

Whether it’s making a meal, setting up a campsite or hosting an international student, they have developed a routine with unconscious decisions about who does what and when.

Their latest project to move west is no different.

To the Williamsons, family trumps everything. Bruce and Karen moved to Brantford in 1984 in order to live near family. They felt it was important their children have loving, close relationships with their grandparents.

This move is also made for family. On June 1, they embark upon a journey that will take them across Canada, to Burnaby, B.C.

Thirty-two years later, Karen and Bruce are the grandparents and they want to have loving, close relationships with their grandchildren.

Their new home is within walking distance to family. Once settled, they will live just across a park from their daughter Heather, son-in-law Mike and their two young grandchildren who are ages seven and three.  

Bruce and Karen are well known and admired in Brantford for their community involvement. They will be missed. They leave behind a large, diverse circle of connections and friends.  

What other considerations led to this significant, life-altering decision?

Karen described four things that influenced their decision. After attending a retirement-leaving party for a friend who was packing it all in and moving west, she felt somewhat envious of their choice. She found herself wishing she and Bruce could do the same thing.

They also began to notice how much time and energy some of their friends spent caring for parents. This led them to question, with their children so far away, who would look after them when the time came?

With social media Bruce and Karen are able to keep in touch with their B.C. grandkids and their France grandchildren. Additionally, they have managed to travel once a year to visit them all. Even so, they began to feel they were missing out on things living so far away from their family.

The final influence was Karen’s involvement with the Grand River Council on Aging. It was there that she learned to view the world through an age-friendly filter.

After speaking with their son while visiting France in 2014, gaining his support, Bruce and Karen approached their daughter about the idea to move west. Both their kids were highly receptive to the idea.

Making a move of this magnitude and scope requires emotional strength and physical ability. Bruce and Karen are both reasonably healthy and decided that if they were going to make a move, they wanted to do it now, while they could handle the task themselves. They developed a timeline and created a plan to make it happen.

They gave themselves a year. They faced big goals such as selling Bruce’s business and listing their home for sale. They sold one car and began the incredible task of sorting through 42 years of accumulated belongings.  They announced their decision to the community.

With a week to go before the big day, most of the heavy work has been done. They have been feted and honoured by the community and their many close friends. So many people have invited them to lunch or dinner or just a quick coffee, just to say goodbye and good luck.

The celebrations have been bittersweet. Brantford was a wonderful community to raise a family, and the Williamsons say it was a privilege to live here for the past 32 years.

But now as June 1 approaches, Bruce and Karen are getting excited.  While they are sad to leave everyone behind, they are looking forward to this next phase of their lives.

They haven’t made any firm decisions about what they will do once settled in Burnaby, but they have looked at a few options. Daughter Heather sings in a big community chorus and Karen would love to join her. Bruce may join a men’s chorus, but as he says, “there’s no rush.”  

They want to have time to travel, too. Exploring beautiful B.C. is at the top of their list. As is making new friends and getting to know their community.

Deciding to take their time driving west, the Williamsons are making the journey a holiday before they settle into their condo. After the hard work and emotional toil of the past year, they deserve a vacation.

Bruce and Karen have given so much of themselves to the Brant community. It’s hard to see them go.

And yet, listening to the excitement and enthusiasm as they talk about their future, we can only wish them well on their new adventure. This next chapter in their lives is unwritten, yet it holds so much promise for the Williamson team.