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Meet Woodlands Residents Al and Jo Horvath

Meet Woodlands Residents Al and Jo Horvath

Al and Jo Horvath were high school sweethearts and married after graduating from college. They are still going strong 58 years later and are now looking forward to celebrating their next anniversary in August at The Woodlands.

“Peggy Cooper gave us a tour and was just wonderful,” Al said.

“The minute we walked on campus we knew this was the place,” Jo said.

Al was born in Schenectady, NY, but has lived in many places in the country and travelled the world with his career as an engineer with General Electric. When he was just starting out Al was involved with the Apollo space program to help put the first man on the moon and throughout his career he worked on radar, sonar and satellite systems for the military and several commercial satellite projects.

Jo is from New Hartford, New York and earned her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of New York before obtaining a master’s degree in healthcare administration. Most of her career was dedicated to working with non-profits, primarily hospice and a nursing home in Syracuse, NY that took in indigent people.

Al and Jo have two sons and four grandchildren that they visit a lot. Before moving to The Woodlands 10 months ago, they enjoyed spending time at their home near Oneida Lake boating and fishing for bass and wall-eyed pike with their sons and grandchildren. Now they stay busy with community activities. Jo uses the gym several days a week and plays in a Mahjong group.

“Mahjong is complicated but good for the brain,” Jo says.

Al’s hobby for 30 years was woodworking, making gifts for friends and family and now he enjoys the community woodworking shop. Both he and Jo are on the Wii Bowling team, which he describes as, “a lot of laughs.”

Al and Jo says what they like most about living at The Woodlands is everyone is welcoming and friendly. They also like that the Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital is nearby on the campus and the great food served in the dining room where they enjoy socializing with the many new friends they have made since moving in.

“We knew right away we made the right decision coming here,” Jo said.

Meet Woodlands Residents Bill Sullivan and Lois Lorimer

Meet Woodlands Residents Bill Sullivan and Lois Lorimer

Bill and Lois first met as students at Tufts University and fell in love, but their lives would take them on very different paths. Their alma mater brought them together again over four decades later and now they are enjoying an active retirement at The Woodlands.

Bill was a chemistry major at Tufts University but was unsure of his career path. With the draft looming, he decided to leave college and enlist in the Army to have some say in the line of duty he was to perform.  He served with an army intelligence unit known as the Army Security Agency and after basic training, he was sent to a military language school and served in West Germany as a German linguist. After serving his three years of active duty, Bill returned to Tufts to major in German language and literature with a minor in European History. That is when he met Lois.

Lois and Bill dated in college but took separate life paths, married other people, and had families.

 Lois got an MA from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and worked for the Kennedy Administration finding volunteers for the Peace Corps. She later worked for the United States Information Agency and met her first husband, Matt Lorimer, in a State Department class. She was assigned to Berlin, Germany and he to Kampala, Uganda, where they married a year later. They had two daughters and a life of travel with assignments in Germany, Zambia, Finland, and Copenhagen, Denmark where Lois was a photo researcher for Time/Life Books. They also worked in Jamaica, Boston, and Washington, D.C. before retiring to Woodstock, Vermont.

After Matt passed away Lois decided to simplify life by saying “yes” to any suggestion, and as a result, she ended up working in both the clinic and the gift store of the Vermont Institute of Natural Science, helping a childhood friend drive a moving van across Canada, and writing short stories, a few of which have been published.  She also said “yes” when Bill called to ask her out to lunch, after not having heard a word from him in 43 years.

Bill’s professional career was in the field of U.S. intelligence, principally with the National Security Agency, rising to the level of a senior executive. He and his first wife Barbara had four children. The family lived in Munich, West Germany for four years then returned to the U.S.  and settled in Laurel, Maryland where after a long illness, Barbara succumbed to a brain tumor.

Following retirement, Bill was recruited to serve on the professional staff of a congressional commission focusing on the role of US intelligence after the end of the cold war. He eventually started his own consulting firm, Strategies for Intelligence, working with AT&T, Raytheon, and the John Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab.

When Bill saw Lois’s phone number in a Tufts University alumni catalog. He decided to call her and the rest, as they say, is history.

When it came time to downsize their home of 17 years in Woodstock, VT, the search brought them to The Woodlands.

“The Woodlands attracted us because of its reputation and moderate size. Most of the other communities we visited were much larger and felt more institutional than comfortable. The community is very professionally run too, so we knew this is where we wanted to be. We have a beautiful apartment with wonderful views of the mountains and sunsets every evening,” Bill said.

Lois and Bill enjoy an active retirement with Lois attending exercise classes several times a week while Bill enjoys the treadmill and weights in the fitness room. He also anticipates working in the community woodshop. The couple has always enjoyed the outdoors and often hike the many wooded trails near The Woodlands.

“There are more activities here than anyone has time for and we are always discovering new ones. The Woodlands offers wonderful independent adult living where we have met so many friendly, interesting people that we enjoy spending time with,” Bill said.

When they are not engaged in community activities both Lois and Bill are involved with the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in Lebanon. Lois has taken several courses there and Bill lends his years of experience and expertise as a teacher at Osher with classes like, “Understanding the Middle East, “ “The Road to Iraq” and “The History of US intelligence from George Washington to the Present Day.”

Bill and Lois are able to enjoy a carefree retirement without household maintenance worries, and access to amenities like the fitness center and woodshop while spending time with other retired adults also pursuing their passions in a safe and supported community. The Woodlands team is thrilled to be a part of Bill and Lois’s happily-ever-after love story.

Meet APD Lifecare Facilities Manager Jesse Thomas

Jesse left a 20-year career in facilities and maintenance management in the manufacturing industry for the opportunity to work with people instead of machines at the Harvest Hill and The Woodlands communities. As the Facilities Manager he focuses on building personal relationships with the residents and team members he works with and supports.

“This has been a super positive change for me. I enjoy working in a more caring environment because everything is more personal. I am taking care of people and their homes. I really appreciate the residents and the team I work with. Every day is a great experience,” Jesse says.

Originally from Newport, New Hampshire, Jesse earned an associate degree in applied technologies from the Universal Technical Institute of Arizona, his OSHA (Occupational Health and Safety Administration) certification and has completed PIT (Powered Industrial Truck) Health and Safety training. After several years working in the manufacturing industry he was ready for something where he could use his skills to help people and have a direct positive affect on their lives. He had always heard positive things about the Alice Peck Day senior living communities and when he saw an opportunity to use his skills and experience there he took it.

Jesse’s areas of expertise are far-ranging including project management, HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) repair and maintenance, plumbing, electrical work, and safety in the workplace. He is also skilled at building and programming computers and game consoles. For Harvest Hill and The Woodlands, he is using his technical knowledge to further streamline operations for maintenance requests, repairs, and installation of new equipment. He also oversees long-term planning and budgeting for equipment to ensure residents always have, for example, reliable appliances and a comfortable environment.

Jesse and his wife, Sarah, have two daughters at home and enjoy “escaping technology” to spend time in the White Mountains. He also likes to go hiking and mountain biking, run in local 5k races with Sarah, and visit his two adult sons whenever possible. Jesse is currently working towards a bachelor’s degree in business management.

Meet Harvest Hill Resident Marylin Babineau

Meet Harvest Hill Resident Marylin Babineau

Marylin has deep ties to the Lebanon community where she has lived most of her life, raised her four children, and owned and operated the oldest business in town with her husband of 60 years. When it came time to move to a retirement community she never considered anywhere else but Harvest Hill.

“This is a very comfortable place and the food is really good,” Marylin says.

Marylin and her husband Leo owned Lebanon’s oldest business, Hildreth’s Hardware, which was established in 1856. The original store was destroyed in a fire in 1903 and rebuilt. Marylin and Leo began managing the store for her father and assumed ownership of it in 1965. The building narrowly escaped being destroyed by fire again when a blaze swept down the street it was on. Several businesses burned but the fire stopped just short of the hardware store. After Marylin and her husband retired their son followed in their footsteps and took over managing the store.

Several of Marylin’s friends at Harvest Hill remember Hildreth’s Hardware.

“It was a huge hardware store and very well known. If you were doing any kind of home repair, Hildreth’s is where you went first,” Marylin says.

Marylin chose Harvest Hill because she always knew, “it was the place to be.” Centrally located in the town she has always called home, Harvest Hill offered her the services and activities she was looking for in a retirement community. She moved in two years ago, stays active going to exercise classes three days a week, and enjoys playing board games and doing arts and crafts.

“I don’t sit around. I like to stay busy,” Marylin says.

Marylin is looking forward to spending time with her four children and their families who live nearby for the holidays.

Meet Woodlands Resident Fran Tannian

Fran has lived a very colorful life having entered a convent at the age of 17, served in the United States Air Force, and enjoyed a successful career as an editor for publications in Alaska where she lived for 55 years.

While a nun, Fran taught in parochial elementary schools in Ohio and Minnesota until she left the convent when she was 25. Inspired by President John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address, she enlisted in the Air Force where she was sent to Washington State University to earn a degree in journalism.

Fran took her journalism degree to the University of Alaska after being discharged from service.  There she worked as an editor for the “Alaska Sea Grant,” a publication funded by the federal government to encourage research in various aspects of the sea for the commercial fishing industry. She used her teaching experience as the editor of “Tide Lines” a publication for junior high schools in the state.

Fran also worked in marketing before becoming the editor of the “Alaska Geological and Geophysical Survey” magazine until she retired.

It was in academia at the University of Alaska where Fran met her husband Neal and they raised a blended family of five children. For many years, she and Neal traveled to the area near The Woodlands to visit a daughter and grandchildren in nearby Vermont and their daughter at Dartmouth College. They became familiar with what the community and the area had to offer.

“Our must-haves for a retirement community were that it be pet-friendly for our dog Molly and have a pool and hot tub. In Alaska, I had to drive ten miles in each direction to use a pool. At The Woodlands I just walk down the hall!” Fran says.

Fran also likes the fact that most of the activities at The Woodlands are resident-driven.  She is joining the library committee to get more involved. She takes Molly for several walks a day on the beautifully maintained campus and nearby nature trails, and she enjoys playing board games and singing with the community choir. To relax she swims and soaks in the hot tub a few times a week and spends time with the close friends she has made in the community.

“The Woodlands has such a family-like culture and everyone here is so friendly and caring. It’s a wonderful place to retire,” Fran says.

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 603-308-0024 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.

Meet Harvest Hill Resident Lois Clarke

Lois Clarke has been a resident of Harvest Hill for the past 14 years. Originally from Great Britain, she grew up with a brother, Bill, and sister, Margaret in Hatfield, Hertfordshire. She moved to Canada where she met her husband Malcolm and they lived in Massachusetts, then Pennsylvania, before settling down at Harvest Hill to be closer to their daughter in New London, New Hampshire.

For 11 of her 14 years at Harvest Hill, Lois spent considerable time and effort interviewing fellow residents for the in-house newsletter, Hillwinds. She has since retired from writing, feeling like it was time for someone else to carry on.

“Eleven years was a long time doing Hillwinds,” Lois says. “I loved it, but it was tiring having a job with consistent deadlines. I would sometimes do as many as five interviews a week and they generally took up my whole afternoon.”

She also spent considerable time gardening, growing flowers on her patio and found it very rewarding but is now content to admire the efforts of other resident gardeners while she takes it easy. She enjoys playing a weekly game of Scattergories with fellow residents on Sundays then finds it “a real treat” to retire to her apartment to watch movies. She enjoys a wide variety of films and television series and viewing them in the comfort of her home.

Lois typically starts her days with breakfast and carrying on a childhood family tradition of reading.

“My family always read at breakfast and lunch,” Lois says. “Never at dinner, though. That time was reserved for conversation.”

She and her friend of the past 13 years, Nancy, regularly meet every evening in the dining room, sometimes joined by another long-time friend and residents they invite to join them for great food and good conversation.

“There is no reason to eat alone here,” Lois says. “If someone asks to join your table and you have an empty seat, the answer is always yes.”

Lois says it doesn’t feel like she has lived at Harvest Hill for the past 14 years and means that as a compliment. She stayed so busy that she hardly noticed the time passing. She feels fortunate to live in such a comfortable community with a lovely apartment that overlooks the gazebo and courtyard next to a huge maple tree, being able to relax, play Scrabble on her computer and read as much as she likes. As the phrase goes, “Life is good.”

Meet Harvest Hill Resident Carl Cassel

Carl came to Harvest Hill a retired magistrate after a long and illustrious career in the Navy where he served around the world and was a part of historical events that helped shape the United States.

Born and raised in Norristown, Pennsylvania, after graduating from high school Carl moved to Rhode Island where he earned a history degree from Brown University. He was a member of the Navy ROTC program and after graduation served four years in the Mediterranean and Caribbean and as the junior engineer in charge of the engine room on a ship that was part of the naval blockade during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Carl married his wife Nancy in Massachusetts before being transferred to California and serving aboard the U.S.S. Ticonderoga in Southeast Asia at the start of the Vietnam War. When he was released from active duty they journeyed to Pennsylvania where he earned his juris doctorate from the Dickinson School of Law and moved to Rhode Island to practice corporate law.

Carl decided to rejoin the Navy in the Judge Advocate General’s Corp which took him to Norway, New London, Florida, Washington D.C., Scotland and Italy. In his second career with the Navy, he served as a staff lawyer, a lower court military judge and coordinated U.S. military activities with the Italian Ministry of Justice. In his last year of active-duty Carl served as a special assistant to the general counsel of the CIA.

“I had a great time with it,” Carl says of his long and unique Navy career.

After retiring from the Navy, Carl and Nancy stayed in Virginia where he was a state magistrate until 2000. They spent three years exploring new places to call home before settling on Orford, New Hampshire where they lived for over 20 years. Carl served as the town Treasurer for nine years, was a library trustee and a member of the Conservation Commission.

Carl is new to Harvest Hill, having moved from another senior living community for the bigger apartments, numerous walking trails, great food and wonderful staff.

“I see a smile everywhere and they can’t do enough for you,” Carl says of the Harvest Hill team. “They all know my name and are happy to help you with whatever you need.”

Carl stays busy walking the beautiful, wooded trails surrounding the Harvest Hill community, attending the group Brainteaser game, concerts, and the book read-aloud group. Besides the great location where he can walk to his primary care doctor’s office and the abundance of fun outings and activities, Carl says another reason he loves it at Harvest Hill is the food.

“It’s all so good and I really enjoy it,” he says.