'Our Heart is in Logan' The Casserlys Dream retirement

Retirement dream – ‘Our Heart is in Logan’

It was 36 years ago that local couple Shelley and Brian Casserly decided to move from New Zealand to Australia. Now, ready for retirement, they’ve found the perfect place to suit their lifestyle, situated in the heart of Logan Reserve. 

Just 3 weeks ago couple Brian and Shelley officially decided to build their future retirement home in the over 50’s lifestyle community Halcyon Rise, and they can’t wait to move in to kick start their transition into retirement life. 

The couple are set to move in there in June, but in the meantime Park Ridge News had a chat to the couple to find out why they chose Logan Reserve’s Halcyon Rise to spend their retirement, and what they’ve learnt in life so far. 

Because the couple; Brian a worker in the ingredient manufacturing industry and Shelley, in business development providing onsite services to the aged care sector, are not quite ready to fully retire yet, they say that Halcyon Rise will offer them the perfect place to settle down with its semi-rural location and countless facilities. 

“I think it will be easier to retire for me when we move into Halcyon because there’s gonna be so many activities that I can participate in and fill my day in,” Shelley said. 

When you’ve worked for such a long time it’s difficult to just stop suddenly so I think it will be a good way to ease myself into retirement.” 

Brian also says it’s ideal because all the facilities you need and more are in one place at Halcyon.

“The facilities they offer will suit our lifestyle. Whether it’s the swimming pool, pilates, or yoga, the gymnasium, the men’s shed, the tennis court, cinema, hair salon, arts and craft room. It’s what I call one-stop living. We’re looking forward to engaging, Brian said. 

“You’ve got everything at your fingertips. You’re really spoiled for choice I think,” Shelley said. 

They also like where the resort is in Logan Reserve because it’s similar to where they live now in Tanah Merah, with plenty of greenery, and the sounds of cows and birds to wake them up in the morning. 

But the one thing they say Halcyon offers that their home in Tanah Merah cannot, is a strong sense of community. 

“We both work from home during the day so we do get lonely being only us. It’s a beautiful neighbourhood but it’s not a community,” Brian said. 

“Halcyon will offer that community no question,” Shelley said. 

“We’re all sort of the same age group at Halcyon, and we all sort of want the same thing; that close community and being able to be as social as you want to. I think that will be quite invigorating all that,” Shelley said

“If you live in a suburb. No matter how beautiful that suburb is and your beautiful house. You are in that house all by yourself, and if you want to be with people you have to get in a car and go somewhere.  With Halcyon Rise, we can just walk down to the community centre and choose to be involved,” Brian said. 

Shelley and Brian Casserly inside

Brian says community is vital because the best way to maintain mental health when ageing is through social connections. 

“The secret as we get older, is we all have to cope with hatch, match and dispatch, (births, deaths, marriages). But I think if we can look forward and reach forward, you will make new friends and connections,” Brian said. 

“Positivity is important because a lot of people get lonely, but it’s because they aren’t interacting.”

Halcyon Rise will also importantly allow them to continue to grow their own veggies, herbs and fruits, thanks to a shared community garden feature, and plenty of yard space. 

“There are gardening plots there, so hopefully I can bag one for me,” Brian said. 

“I have a secret of life, and it’s that people don’t eat enough underground vegetables. That way you’re getting a really big paradigm of minerals and vitamins through your vegetables.

“Food is medicine is my motto.”

The couple are also eagerly looking forward to the house itself which will feature their dream kitchen, with an island bench, a window looking out to the yard, and walk-in pantry. 

Especially, Brian, who is excited to use it to bake his own bread, and make his favourite foods for him and his family, like his famous Lemon Meringue Pie and COVID cookies. 

“I’ve got this favourite cookie Brian makes that sustained me working from home with COVID. So it’s called the COVID cookie, and it’s oatmeal, dried apricots, cinnamon and sultanas, it’s absolutely beautiful,” Shelley said. 

One of their favourite Logan Spots to frequent is the Daisy Hill Conservation Park, next to the Koala Sanctuary which they call a local best kept secret. 

“It’s a beautiful place and we’ve had breakfast there, we’ve played cricket there, we’ve had lunches there, cooked BBQ dinners, had teas and our eldest daughter got married there,” Shelley said. 

“It’s a really fantastic place that I don’t think enough people know about.” 

Brian and Shelley have grown with the town and seen it in its earliest development. Including seeing what the grounds that the Logan Hyperdome is now built on looked like before the shopping centre went in. 

“We saw the truck unloading the bulldozer, while there were cattle grazing there on that land,” Brian said. 

“I looked at Shelley and said, ‘I wonder what’s going on there’. 

“Shelley said ‘They’re going to build a shopping centre,’ and that’s exactly what happened.”

We can’t wait for Shelley and Brian to start this next chapter of the journey of their lives into retirement. If you want to see what all the chatter is about, book in for a Discovery Tour at Halcyon Rise here.