Terminology & Community: What does it all mean?

How TV Programs & Sitcoms Influenced Alternative Housing Models

My Housemates: With Some Sage Advice

Continuing The Quest: Coming together despite the distance

Halloween and some great gals who are taking ACTION. 

This is my favorite time of year. Halloween, Fall weather, leaves turning, my birthday, and having some fun with videos and staying connected to you all. I have been very busy! My Facebook Live’s on Mondays has kept me hopping and engaged. Changing topics every week to offer value is fun and challenging. Hopefully, you have joined me, if not please do on the Facebook page for Women for Living in Community Network

Everyone was doing Zoom last year, and I thought it was “time” for me to do that too.

What happened is more about the women who gathered than zoom or my class but a few basic details.

We came together over Zoom from different parts of the country after my offering of a 5 session class on my guidebook, Your Quest for Home last Fall. There were 9 women who took the class with all its technical challenges (you know, “can you unmute?”). Oh, and my MacBook Pro gave up on the 3rd session. That was a real test of trust, flexibility and commitment which are all things needed on the quest.

About Us 

More than half of the women continued to stay connected through our bi-monthly zoom meetings to support the 6 of us after the original class offering was completed. It is called “Continuing the Quest” (CTQ). 

The timing was interesting during the class sessions as we had big events all over the world, a presidential election and the insurrection at the US Capital. And of course, we were all sequestered at home by a global pandemic. We bonded even more during this time. 

We women who lived in Oregon, Michigan, Ohio, Florida, California, and North Carolina came together during those months. Thanks to the joint interests in furthering the goal of community, whatever that might be for each person, the quest is still on. 

The really magical thing is that these women have taken their action plans seriously, that is why I love spending time with them. 

Judy sold her house in Florida and moved to North Carolina to possibly join one of the women in the group to form a shared living arrangement. There was some impetus from all the hurricanes.

Another member picked up and moved from her home in Oregon to Arkansas to be near family and friends. Another member found the Village to Village Network in her hometown to participate in and expand her friendships and community. Yet another go-getter has taken huge strides to make her dream of a 4-plex house in North Carolina, that she lives in to become her own and grow her community that way. Then there is our friend who is working diligently on a lesbian community in Ohio, has regular meetings, a lively Facebook group and has shared her dream at conferences. All this, in less than a year. Wow!

Lots of BIG strides. The support and friendship, camaraderie and drive have been remarkable. The women often expound, without prodding, how much the support of the group means to them. 

I am honored by this group of pioneers who have taken the challenge. It really makes me feel we can make a difference towards alternative possibilities for us as we age with connections of our choosing!

Continuing The Quest on Zoom

My observations of these women include some definite necessities in my opinion to make the possibility of aging in community a reality.

 What we have in common: (and basic building blocks)

  • Risk takers
  • Sense of urgency
  • Willingness to learn
  • A big dose of flexibility
  • Natural yearning for connections with others
  • Resilience 
  • Positive nature
  • Interpersonal work on themselves

I hope that some of you have gotten this far reading about some amazing champions bringing community living for themselves and others.

The next class on my book will be in 2022 as I focus on my webinar for Fellowship of Intentional Communities on some basics of Aging in Community, and my one-hour free webinar tentatively titled, Conquering Loneliness by Living a Golden Girl Like Life. I will keep you posted on all that on my FB page and here if you have subscribed. 

Also if you’re not a Facebook fan, you can watch my live videos on my Youtube Channel. Have others who are interested? Please spread the word. Thank you for your continuous support. It’s a Movement…Hoping you will be joining us.

The Renaissance Man of Aging: Dr. Bill Thomas

The Golden Girl Phenomenon – Why does it still work?

Safety & Technology

Defining Community

Who’s watching?

It’s been way too long! Glad I said 2021 and beyond in my last communication! It is beyond for sure. Summer is here in North Carolina and my dream of a gathering place here in my home (outside) continues to take shape. I don’t know how many of you know how personally I take this mission of mine. I live it. In the last year along with some other pointed priorities, my personal community has changed. 

I have my own personal journey and experiments in living in a community. I was doing it for me. Along the way, I wanted to share my journey. I have shared it with you in a few ways if you have been with me for a while. Added to some of my communications over the years. You know, website then Facebook Page, and on and on. Wanting to make sure we stay connected. That is part of my mission in Women for Living in Community. Connection, Information and Action.

Recently I posted some pictures on my personal page of the BIG changes on my ½ acre property. You know those sporadic pictures of progress you might see from your friends? Well, one of the more recent ones was a selfie of me in front of the Dept. of Public Works with me and my brand new permit.

Selfie of me with my brand new permit!

I had no idea who was watching my postings. I heard from folks I hadn’t heard from in years. I realized many thought I was still acting as a developer to build my dream of a pocket neighbourhood. I decided to set the record straight. And here it is for you too. 

Thanks to all of you who have been on the journey with me the last 15 years that I have been in Asheville and singing the Aging in Community movement song.

It’s been long and very circuitous. In case you missed a few of the turns. Here goes: some of the facts.

I bought 2/12 acres to build my pocket neighbourhood adjoining my existing property in N. Asheville, NC in 2015 from the matriarch, Faye who had lived on the property through a few husbands and was 80 at the time.

The property was perfect for small community use. The zoning was right, the property was as flat as any in the Blue Ridge Mountains. I even had a design done by the guru of Pocket Neighborhoods, Ross Chapin. For 2 years I talked about it, presented the concept many times and even hired an architect.

Nothing prepared me to be a developer. In 2017 I gave up that dream and adjusted to a new plan. I cut out the  ½ acre with the midcentury ranch brick house from the rest of the 2 ½ acres. I had hoped it would be used as a  common house like meeting space.

In the years since 2017, the house had 4 housemates, the swimming pool was buried and new wiring and HVAC was added. Then the property was remodelled on the inside by a young couple to bring the 4 bedrooms, 3 baths into the 21st century. In May of 2020 while the pandemic raged the young couple and their new baby left to move out of the area.

During the pandemic, I sat talking to my cats about the community concept and we decided to move into the house in August of 2020. More renovations on the outside continued and those are the ones you have seen recently on this page.

Oh, and it isn’t a pocket neighbourhood in the purest way.

What it is, is MY intentional neighbourhood.

I share the house with my housemate, Vicky who has her own 400 sq. ft suite and her own kitchen, bath and entrance. It is perfect for us. I have many neighbours, many of them single women, and I know all my neighbours. I live on a dead-end and very quiet street. I hear the frogs in the creek and the neighbours’ horses snort. Dreams can adapt.

I do want to thank you all for being of support for the last years through all the transitions. I’d like to think I help you just a little to know the persistence has paid off for me. Hope it will for you too. I really do believe there are models that we as women can point the way to, so we can live our later years with joy.

Ready to dream with me? How about making it a reality! 

Live Mondays!

I’m so excited to be back and will be live with you every Monday, 4 pm EDT on the Women For Living In Community Facebook Page, talking about different topics involving community and connection. See you online!

Summer Reading & Favorite Books

Women For Living in Community