It’s October and many of our migratory feathered friends have left for sunnier, warmer climes.

But take heart – we still have some of them in our midst. They are the Retired, Older, Busy, Imaginative, Neighborly, Seniors … R.O.B.I.N.S.

Retired from the workforce and the mainstream of life, some live in retirement homes like Oak Crest (to cite one example) while others reside in their own homes. Many are still very active and productive. A famous quote goes, “the reports of our demise are greatly exaggerated.”

Join us at Oak Crest during our Christmas Tree Walk or our Arts and Crafts fair throughout the year and see for yourself.

To young readers: As you are, so once were we. As we are, soon you will be. Many beautiful items made by our residents can be purchased, such as knitted or crocheted afghans, quilts, jewelry and other hand crafted items … too numerous to mention. It is a money-raising venture for our Good Samaritan Club that aids those in need.

Artists abound who paint breathtaking scenes or take beautiful photos, sketch artists, wood carvers, poets, etc.

Each Saturday we are treated to a musical performance by local talent: the Oak Crest boys. Residents lend their voices to old favorite songs, a joke-teller now and then to provide a much needed laugh.

There are retired academicians formerly employed at NIU or high schools with whom we enjoy visiting. Listen to the laughter as we meet for coffee or play cards and other games.

Also residing here are retired farmers who once tended to dairy herds and planted the wonderful DeKalb corn, famous for its flying ear trademark.

Our historians work long and hard to preserve information and landmarks devoted to our heritage, assuring that we do not forget those who have gone before us.

On patriotic holidays, we honor war veterans who fought for our freedom in past wars.

Volunteers devote countless hours performing various services for those who can no longer do it.

This is not an attempt to paint an overly-bright picture of getting older because it “ain’t” for sissies. Some of us are in poor health, suffering from painful, debilitating ailments, but we learn to adjust.

Our white hair may look like winter to observers, but there is summer in our hearts.