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Meet Harvest Hill Fitness Instructor Joanna Graber

Meet Harvest Hill Fitness Instructor Joanna Graber

Joanna Graber is one of Harvest Hill’s fitness instructors who enjoys spending time with residents socializing, having fun, and getting fit. She likes working with seniors, learning from them, hearing their stories from a lifetime of experiences, and can always count on some words of wisdom whenever she asks them about life or parenting situations.

“Everyone here is so welcoming to me, to new residents, to everyone. They are also fun to be around and remind me to slow down and be mindful of my own form and enjoy our time together,” Joanna says.

Joanna moved to Lebanon 17 years ago where she shares a home with her husband, three daughters, and their cats. She has been teaching fitness for 24 years and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in nutrition science and psychology, is a registered dietician, and is certified by the National Exercise Training Association. She oversees a team of instructors that teach everything from strength and cardio classes to yoga and swimming at the Carter Community Building Association (CCBA) near Harvest Hill, which offers residents and Alice Peck Day campus employees discounted memberships.

The residents at Harvest Hill have widely varying degrees of ability so Joanna structures the 45-minute classes with 30 minutes of chair exercises and 15 minutes of standing exercises. For residents who prefer to sit longer, or for the entire class, all the workouts can be adapted to suit the participants’ individual preferences and abilities.

“When I am their age, some of them in their 90s, I hope I am still showing up like they do, staying active, socializing, and making new friends,” Joanna says.

Harvest Hill supports our residents’ health and well-being by bringing in highly qualified fitness instructors like Joanna several times a week. Beyond maintaining their cardiovascular fitness and muscle strength for increased mobility and better balance, the classes offer residents an easy way to get together and have fun. Social engagement and peer bonding through physical activities have been shown to decrease the chances of older adults becoming isolated and depressed and helps them maintain mental and physical health. It also encourages better quality sleep and dietary choices.

If you would like to learn more about Harvest Hill and the fun activities we schedule for residents to enhance their health and well-being please schedule a personalized tour call Peggy Cooper at 603-308-0475 or contact us via our website.

Meet Harvest Hill Resident Mary Harrington

Meet Harvest Hill Resident Mary Harrington

Mary and her husband came to Harvest Hill 15 years ago, having lived in the Upper Valley for over five decades. The community offered the services and amenities they were looking for in the place they had called home for so long.

Originally from Somersworth, New Hampshire, Mary graduated from the MacIntosh Business College in nearby Dover with a secretarial degree and worked as a secretary in the human resources department for the Internal Revenue Service. After she and her husband got married in 1963, they moved to Worcester, Massachusetts where she worked for another IRS office until they started a family.

Mary is actively involved with her church and has served on several committees over the years. She is part of a group that makes mission quilts for the underserved and has personally sewed 50 backpacks every year that are filled with school supplies donated by the congregation and shipped to children in some of the poorest nations around the world.

Mary has always liked to travel and every September she and daughter Judy go to Maine to volunteer for the annual New England Parkinson’s Ride, which raises money for the Michael J. Fox Parkinson’s Research Foundation. They staff one of the rest stops for bicyclists participating in the ride.

Right after moving to Harvest Hill Mary became involved with the resident newsletter and served as the editor for 12 years. She enjoyed working on the computer and overseeing article assignments, layout and design. Mary has since handed off her newsletter editorial duties to someone else but still contributes by attending community events and taking photos for it.

Mary enjoys being involved in community life. She is the president of the Residents’ Association and is currently serving the last of a 3-year term on the APD Lifecare Board of Trustees. She also oversees the Trading Post, a community swap shop of sorts where residents can trade items and she donates unwanted items to local area thrift stores every couple of months.

When she is not volunteering in the community Mary is a regular for exercise class four days a week and Scattergories on Sundays. To relax she enjoys quilting, listening to music and reading. Her favorite genres are thrillers and mysteries but says she has “too many favorite authors to list.”

“What I like best about living at Harvest Hill is the food and activities. No shopping, cooking or cleanup and with all the activities you can stay as busy as you want to be,” Mary says.

Meet APD Nurse, Lisa Carpenter

Lisa has been a nurse for over 20 years and holds an associate degree in nursing. She previously worked in skilled nursing homes, but Harvest Hill is her first assisted living community.

Lisa came to Harvest Hill four years ago. She has always enjoyed working with older adults and was drawn to the way Harvest Hill residents and staff work together. She assists residents with their medication management, performs daily health checks and communicates with their doctors as needed to ensure they get the best care. She appreciates that many of the residents’ primary care doctors are on campus at the Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital and their multi-specialty team regularly makes house calls to Harvest Hill for the residents’ convenience.

“The residence and staff are really a great team. Everyone works together and the residents are so appreciative. This is such a great place to work and everyone has always been so welcoming,” Lisa says.

Lisa was born and raised in New Hampshire but now makes her home with her husband in nearby Tunbridge, Vermont. They are currently busy planning their daughter’s wedding. They are dedicated  animal lovers, as proven by the care they provide them. They have four dogs; one is 18 years old and completely blind and deaf. They also have three cats, one that needs IV fluids every day. Their menagerie also includes two pet rescue goats.

“We have a nursing home for pets,” Lisa said with a smile.

Whenever possible she and her husband enjoy trips to the mountains and the beach.