Meet Dee Bivens, Culpepper Garden Independent Living Resident
Where to begin with Dee Bivens — she is such an active lady! Residents know her as the wonderful person who plays the piano in the Solarium every Tuesday evening. She also plays for Assisted Living residents twice a month.
Dee first discovered the piano at age 6 when she stayed with a neighbor while her youngest sister was born. The piano opened a new world to her, and she begged her parents to get one, which they did when she was 8 — a player piano for $10. She took lessons for 11 years, studied music in college, then married and began teaching piano at age 20. She has taught piano on and off since then, and still occasionally accepts students. Dee’s most personally satisfying activity is teaching a music therapy class for 20 autistic students, ages 6-20, once a week in D.C.
Dee was born and married in Illinois, then moved to Missouri, Michigan, Kentucky, and Oklahoma. She and her husband raised two children, now grown — a daughter in Arlington, and a son in Tennessee. She has a “local” granddaughter, 15, at Washington-Lee High School; a grandson, 18, at Georgia Tech; and five grandchildren in Tennessee, ages 15-28.
After being “empty nesters,” Dee and her husband divorced—and while difficult, she believes she never would never have had all the adventures that followed, had that not happened. In Kentucky, she landed a job at a radio station in sales—and was also able to use her creative ability to write copy, and to do voice-overs. After working in sales for a few years, she got into the travel business and has worked on and off in travel since 1991. Her travels include a safari in Kenya and seeing Mount Kilimanjaro; traveling around Costa Rica; and visiting Israel, where she walked where Jesus walked. She owns her own small travel company, Your Wanderlust Travel, but is contracted to another travel agency.
Another passion of Dee’s is being outdoors, working in her garden. She is now Garden Facilitator for the resident gardens. And she was just elected to be President of the Resident Association. (January 2018)