On 5th November 2019, Arcare Hillside client, Jean Algie celebrated her 100th birthday.
Proving that age is just a number, Jean spent the week of her big birthday, incessantly partying alongside her friends, family, peers, carers and even with her ex-employer. Friends and family travelled from far and wide, with some even coming from overseas, to see Jean and celebrate her birthday with her.
“It’s funny, I’ve not had this many parties in my entire life and they haven’t stopped…” Jean laughed.
Jean originated from Scotland and migrated to Australia in 1959, when her husband accepted a job offer. Jean packed up her three children, husband and herself, and made the journey to start a new life and adventure in Australia. The family started out in Australia with very little, however through her and her husband’s hard-work, they were able to make ends-meat to provide for their family.
“It was challenging, but that’s life, you just keep getting on with it.” Jean said.
Jean’s headstrong nature and strong work-ethic, drove her to continue to work into her late 80’s. For many years, Jean worked in Toorak, for various households as a house cleaner. Jean found enjoyment and sense of purpose and fulfilment in her work, so much so, that she still likes catching up with her old employers every now and then, just to make sure that everything is in order.
Jean attributes the key to having a long life, such as hers, to happiness. “You have to laugh, you have to have fun and you have to take things as they come.” Jean said. These days, Jean’s main source of happiness, stems from her beautiful extended family. Jean enjoys receiving phone calls and visits from her children and five grandchildren.
Although not as steady on her feet as she once was, Jean always like to look to the lighter side of life, finding a laugh and enjoyment out of the smallest things. Now residing at 5-star aged care residence, Arcare Hillside, Jean likes to joke with her carers and other clients, that her unsteadiness her on feet, comes from her love of drinking Johnnie Walker. However Jean didn’t realise how literally some in the community took her joke, receiving a large bottle of Johnnie Walker as a 100th birthday present.
“It was very funny… I had to tell people that don’t actually drink it.” Jean blushed.
On Thursday 7th November, the Arcare Hillside community hosted a surprise lavish high tea reception to celebrate the birthday of their latest centenarian.
All of the ladies in the community, dressed in their most beautiful hats and fascinators, especially for Jean’s birthday celebration.
The lifestyle team presented Jean with a homemade pink iced cake, and the community gathered around her to sing Happy Birthday and watch as she blew out her 100 candles.
Arcare would like to wish Jean a very Happy 100th Birthday and Happy Returns.