Carol can't help laughing when she recounts a phone conversation with a friend in Oklahoma who was very concerned about her living situation. “When she heard I was in subsidized housing, she pictured some rundown place,” Carol recalls. “I told her this is a beautiful building and e-mailed her some pictures to prove it.”
Friends on every floor
Carol moved into CommonBond’s East Shore Place senior community in Mahtomedi, MN eight years ago. It’s not just the well-maintained buildings and grounds she loves; she says she has found a true community at East Shore Place, where residents watch out for one another. “The last place I lived, people didn’t interact too much,” she says. “Here, if you want to socialize, there’s always a chance to do that.” People sign up to bring treats to the Monday coffee hour, meet for exercise class and make sure residents they haven’t seen in a couple of days are okay. And when Carol cares for her 17-month-old great-granddaughter Kyra, fellow residents get a big kick out of seeing her. “I guess she has about 60-some surrogate grandparents,” Carol says.
It’s all here
The Advantage Center services available at East Shore Place also help keep residents engaged and healthy. A technology consultant who visits twice a month helped Carol learn to use her computer, which she now uses to stay in touch with friends and family. Working with the computer helps to keep her mind agile, and weekly exercise classes conducted by a personal trainer go a long way toward helping Carol maintain the 100-pound weight loss that brought her diabetes under control. “There’s a lot available for us here,” she says, “and the neighborhood has anything you might need. Really, it’s like a small town, and we’re like a family in the building.”