Ellen Edmonston, relaxing in the library at The Glenshiel, is a fast reader who enjoys a wide variety of topics. She also very much appreciates the social aspects of living at this downtown Victoria independent living residence.

Ellen Edmonston, relaxing in the library at The Glenshiel, is a fast reader who enjoys a wide variety of topics. She also very much appreciates the social aspects of living at this downtown Victoria independent living residence.

Independence with meals: retirement living at its finest

The Glenshiel’s central location great for activities, services on site add to the appeal

When you’re as active as Ellen Edmonston, living in a central location at The Glenshiel has its advantages. A good example came when she walked over to the Parkside Hotel and Spa to check out the Gingerbread Showcase.

“It was just the right distance for us to get a walk in and enjoy some fresh air,” she says. She’s also looking forward to accompanying fellow residents to the upcoming Naden Band concert at the Royal Theatre, a couple more blocks up the road.

Inside or out, plenty to keep one busy

Ellen is an active Scrabble player in The Glenshiel’s Thistle Lounge and as an avid reader, she takes great interest in new additions to the library off the lounge.

Outside she sings in choirs with The Entertainers at the nearby James Bay New Horizons Seniors Activity Centre, and Unity Church, where she also serves as a prayer chaplain. Her weekly agenda, when her body allows, also includes exercise classes and discussions about spiritual and other issues.

“I’m still living, exploring and growing. Just because I’ve passed my 80th birthday, it doesn’t mean I’ve stopped learning,” she says. Ellen’s Friday colouring group, as well, teaches her about her own and others’ creativity: “Some people are well-trained and they are real artists. I’m just a colourer, myself.”

Meal service, history were big incentives

Ellen moved to Victoria about seven years ago and into The Glenshiel in August, joining her son, Ken, in the 60-resident building. “I knew I needed to stop living alone and I needed to eat a better diet. Snacking is fatal in terms of keeping well,” she says. “Not only are the meals very good here – that was a big incentive for me – I loved the idea of living in a 100-year-old building.”

Noting that The Glenshiel operated as a hotel in its earlier days, Ellen jokes that famed artist Emily Carr took up residence in the James Bay Inn for a time. “I feel like I’m doing my own Emily Carr here!”

People make The Glenshiel what it is

Going on group outings such as concerts and a Christmas lights carriage tour ride in Sidney help fulfill her social needs, but Ellen notes the welcoming atmosphere at The Glenshiel helps make daily life enjoyable.

“People make this place,” she says. “Not only that, we have incredible staff and they make you feel cared for and part of a family.”

Supports work well for single people

To anyone contemplating moving into a retirement complex, Ellen emphatically reminds them that “this is not jail. A retirement home can be independent, yet community living.”

If you’d like to find out more about their living options, visit theglenshiel.bc.ca, call 250-383-4164 or send an email to theglenshiel@shaw.ca.

Just Posted

Crews with Central Saanich Fire Department spent Sunday morning mopping up a fire at 7987 Galbraith Cres. that caused extensive damage. The fire displaced six people with its cause still under investigation. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Residents of a Central Saanich duplex ‘fortunate’ to escape Sunday morning fire

Damage to the duplex extensive with one resident said to be ‘catatonic’ after escaping building

Kiana Chamberland was last seen April 15 in Esquimalt. (Victoria Police Department)
MISSING: Kiana Chamberland, considered at high risk

The 24-year-old was last seen April 15th in Esquimalt

Six people are said to have escaped injury and are currently receiving assistance after an early Sunday morning fire in Central Saanich displaced them. (Central Saanich Fire Department/Twitter)
Six people escape early Sunday morning fire in Central Saanich unharmed

Cause of the fire on Galbraith Close remains under investigation

Metchosin ecologist Andy MacKinnon is raising alarm bells for arbutus trees, as many are falling victim to a fungus called leaf blights. The leaves and branches of the trees are turning brown or black and then dropping off, eventually killing them. (Dawn Gibson/News Staff)
Vancouver Island arbutus trees fighting for survival against parasites

Many trees weakened, turning black or brown and dying, says local ecologist

Applied theatre researcher Dennis Gupa wearing a traditional Filipino malong at a local beach in Victoria. (Credit: John Threlfall)
UVic researcher uses theatre to empower marginalized voices, fight climate change

Dennis Gupa looks to create new modes of expression, knowledge sharing

Vancouver resident Beryl Pye was witness to a “concerning,” spontaneous dance party that spread throughout social groups at Kitsilano Beach on April 16. (Screen grab/Beryl Pye)
VIDEO: Dance party erupts at Vancouver’s Kitsilano Beach to the dismay of onlookers

‘It was a complete disregard for current COVID-19 public health orders,’ says Vancouver resident Beryl Pye

A syringe is loaded with COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to open up COVID vaccine registration to all B.C. residents 18+ in April

Registration does not equate to being able to book an appointment

Pat Kauwell, a semi-retired construction manager, lives in his fifth-wheel trailer on Maxey Road because that’s what he can afford on his pension, but a Regional District of Nanaimo bylaw prohibits using RVs as permanent dwellings, leaving Kauwell and others like him with few affordable housing options. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Rules against RV living hard on Island residents caught in housing crunch

Regional District of Nanaimo bylaw forcing pensioner to move RV he calls home off private farm land

(Black Press file photo).
Multiple stabbings at Vancouver Island bush party

Three youths hospitalized after an assault in Comox

Selina Robinson is shown in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday November 17, 2017. British Columbia’s finance minister says her professional training as a family therapist helped her develop the New Democrat government’s first budget during the COVID-19 pandemic, which she will table Tuesday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. finance minister to table historic pandemic-challenged deficit budget

Budget aims to take care of people during pandemic while preparing for post-COVID-19 recovery, Robinson said

Each spring, the Okanagan Fest-of-Ale is held in Penticton. This year, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival will not be held. However, beer is still available. How much do you know about this beverage? (pxfuel.com)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about beer?

Put your knowledge to the test with this short quiz

Lord Tweedsmuir’s Tremmel States-Jones jumps a player and the goal line to score a touchdown against the Kelowna Owls in 2019. The face of high school football, along with a majority of other high school sports, could significantly change if a new governance proposal is passed at the B.C. School Sports AGM May 1. (Malin Jordan)
Power struggle: New governance model proposed for B.C. high school sports

Most commissions are against the new model, but B.C. School Sports (BCSS) and its board is in favour

Russ Ball (left) and some of the team show off the specimen after they were able to remove it Friday. Photo supplied
Courtenay fossil hunter finds ancient turtle on local river

The specimen will now make its home at the Royal BC Museum

Pall Bearers carrying the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh, followed by the Prince of Wales, left and Princess Anne, right, into St George’s Chapel for his funeral, at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday April 17, 2021. (Danny Lawson/Pool via AP)
Trudeau announces $200K donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A tribute to the late prince’s ‘remarkable life and his selfless service,’ the Prime Minister said Saturday

Most Read