Family, farming and retirement bliss: A mother and son’s life at Hunter Village

In the serene surroundings of Saskatoon’s Hunter Village retirement community, an extraordinary family story unfolds. Lyle Poley, an 80-year-old former farmer and his centenarian mother Esther Poley call the residence home. This story is not just about a strong family bond, it’s also a reflection of the changing dynamics of retirement living.

A new chapter for Esther, Lyle and his wife Darlene
Lyle, an Independent Living resident of five months, spoke of his past with a blend of nostalgia and contentment. "I farmed all my life, and now it’s time for something different," he said, marking the end of one chapter and the beginning of another. His journey to Hunter Village, along with his wife of nearly 60 years, Darlene Poley, was a step towards a simpler, more community-oriented way of life.

Lyle's mother, Esther, who is an Aspira Assisted Living resident of six months, was born near Wakaw Lake in Saskatchewan. She grew up on - and later worked - the farm, ingrained with hard-working values that would last a lifetime. She was an avid curler and gave her all whenever she hit the ice. "She would try her best all the time," Lyle recalled, reflecting on his mother's competitive spirit in curling.

Darlene is an integral part of this familial narrative. She brings her own warmth and personality to Hunter Village. "Darlene used to run an insurance business back in our small town," Lyle shared, painting a picture of a woman who, like Esther, has always been deeply involved in the fabric of community life.

How they spend their days at Hunter Village
Retirement life for this unique family trio is marked by routines and activities that keep them engaged and connected. Esther, at 100 years old, leads an active life. "She attends exercises, does puzzles, and plays cards," Lyle said proudly. Darlene, too, has found her niche in the community since she arrived with her husband. "She enjoys quilting," Lyle mentioned. "She has a knack for putting colours together, making beautiful quilts." This creative pursuit is more than just a hobby; it's a continuation of Darlene's lifelong passion for creating and contributing, a trait that she shares with Esther.

In the stunning retirement community that resembles a luxury hotel, Lyle spends his days mixing social engagements with personal hobbies. Mornings usually start with coffee and occasionally he will play pool or watch the local hockey team. One thing Lyle consistently does is regularly maintain his vehicles in residence’s underground parking garage.

The friendliness of staff and fellow residents
The sense of community at Hunter Village is something all three appreciate. Lyle spoke fondly of the friendliness and warmth of the staff and residents. "Everybody's very friendly here," he noted, highlighting the welcoming and inclusive nature of the community. This sense of belonging and connection is crucial in a retirement community, and Hunter Village seems to have fostered it beautifully. 

Esther's contentment with life at Hunter Village is evident. "You feel well taken care of, safe, and secure," she said, summarizing the peace of mind and comfort that the community provides. Simply put, it's become home for her.

How the move to Hunter Village came about
The decision to move to Hunter Village was influenced by illness and the desire for something different. "Well, for me, I had COVID two years ago. And after that I was short on breath,” said Lyle. “Doing things, getting things done looking after your yard and all that stuff, it's not only that you can't do it, but you get tired of doing it the same thing. Like how I farmed all my life. Like Mom, somebody said to her you have a piece of ground that you can have a garden and she said no, I don't want a piece of ground. I did that all my life. I want to do different things," Lyle explained further.

Food and health security to their liking
This decision was not just about finding a place with excellent facilities and care but also about ensuring that the family remained close-knit and well nourished. “The food has been good here. Mom doesn’t mind the food either, it’s good here,” said Lyle. For Esther, Lyle and Darlene, Hunter Village is not just about comfort and convenience; it's a place that echoes their values, ensures their safety and meets their health needs. As Lyle pointed out: "You have a thing that if you if you need an ambulance, you can press the button or if you have trouble, especially if you have things like a bad heart or something like that, you're always being monitored.”

“I’d recommend it”
The trio appreciates the balance between independence and support, the accessibility to amenities, and the sense of community that Hunter Village offers. As Lyle reflected on their life at Hunter Village, his advice to others considering retirement living is straightforward and genuine. "I'd recommend it," he said, his confidence stemming from his positive experience alongside Esther and Darlene. He believes in the comfort, care, and community spirit that such places provide, making the golden years not just comfortable but also fulfilling and enjoyable. 

Lyle, Esther, and Darlene's story in Hunter Village is more than a tale of retirement living; it's a narrative of family, adaptability, and the joy of community living. Here, in the tranquil comfort of Hunter Village, they have found a place where memories are cherished, new friendships are formed, and life's later chapters are embraced with warmth, dignity, and a strong sense of family.

Related Posts