a bench with a view

a bench with a view

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

retirement

Sunday night we participated in a progressive dinner through our church.  That's where you go to one person's house for appetizers, another's for dinner, a third and final one for dessert. The church did one last year, which we also participated in, and had a blast so we decided to do it again this year.

I have to give credit to the lady who organizes this.  She solicits host houses for each of the courses and then lines up the houses somewhat together for the three courses so people aren't driving great distances between courses. Then she lines up the people participating, making sure she mixes things up so the same people who socialize at church don't necessarily become part of the group for the evening so people can get to know others from the church. She's a genius for getting it organized and getting the right mix of people together (and I'm sure God has a hand in it too :)

Our first course, the appetizers, was canceled unfortunately at the last minute because the family hosting were all sick and no one, naturally, wanted to go to a house with sick people nor was it fair to have us descend upon their home when they were under the weather. It gave us an extra hour before we needed to report to the dinner assignment, which I was glad for because we had a busy Saturday, going down to feed the homeless, and then Sunday I had hospitality at church where I provided finger foods for fellowship after the services so I was pretty tired after church was over. It gave me time for a Sunday nap (and it was a nice one, LOL). It also gave us time to get Koda's walk in so we wouldn't have to walk him when we got home from the festivities.

Dinner was really nice; delicious chicken dinner. Then we drove to a lady's house for dessert.

She lives in a retirement community. Oh my gosh. The moment she opened the door to her house, I wanted to be eligible for retirement and move in as her next door neighbor.

The concept is, which I'm sure other communities have, is a place one can retire and decide on their level of care depending on what they need. They have individual apartments for the independent, assisted living for those that need those services, and then a nursing home. So you can buy into the facility and advance the level of services as you need them.

Her apartment was gorgeous, small but well designed and put together. Two bedrooms, big walk in closets, nice size living room and dining room.  We didn't feel crowded. She has a cleaning service that comes in weekly; an hour a week but she says that's enough time to do the bathrooms (two of them), vacuum, wipe down the kitchen. She gets a meal provided daily, but has a full service kitchen should she decide to cook. She prepares simple meals other than the meal she gets daily. They have recreational facilities, a pool, exercise room, activities, etc. 

I looked into the buy in fee and monthly fees. Somewhat doable.

I'm wishing I was ready for retirement (10 years to be eligible to be there, but whose counting).

Honestly, there was so much room it would work for what we would need. I saw the hassle with hubby's parents being so stubborn to give up their independence and their house to move into such a place, but really to me the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. 

Not sure we would so such a thing, but something I'm going to consider in the years ahead. All I know is I don't want to put the stress onto son that was put onto hubby and his brother in dealing with their parents' advancing years.

And this certainly seemed like a reasonable option to pursue.

What about you? Have you considered options for living once you reach retirement age or reach the age you can't care for yourself as functionally as you can now? Would you consider such a place?

32 comments:

Shelly said...

The progressive dinner sounds like so much fun!

I can retire very soon, and probably will, but my husband still has about 14 years to go. When we get to that point, I don't know what we'll be looking at.

That retirement place sounds like it is a really neat thing. My great aunt, aged 98, lived in one and she loves it. She still lives in one of the independent apartments and is very active.

Bijoux said...

My spouse recently moved his aunt into a place like that and she loves it. We've been dealing with his parents' house for years and its been a burden. His dad has Parkinson's and they still live in their big home. I don't wan to do the same thing to my kids, that's for sure.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

The expense of something like that is out of sight for me. Here my home is paid for so it's perfect and I'm planning on staying as long as I can. At this point of my life it is a comfortable place to be. One never knows when that might change. For today I'm content. Hope you have a wonderful Wednesday!

Kathy ... aka Nana said...

As long as we can manage on our own, we intend to stay in this house. But as soon as the day comes, we will definitely move to some kind of assisted living place. The last thing we want to be is a burden on DD and her family.

Jeanie said...

I would definitely consider such a place, but Doc would be a harder sell. Like you, not making my care a problem for my kids would be my priority. I hope it is a while before we have to make those decisions.

Big Mark 243 said...

If I were to find a place that was as genial as the one you had dinner, I sure would!!

I save my money in a way that hopefully will help me cover some of the anticipated fees of such a move. I know that I don't want to burden anyone with my care...

As far as the dinner... that is a great idea..! Great way to meet and introduce oneself to a new group of friends..!

Pat Hatt said...

Interesting idea for dinner, never heard of such a thing.

If you can find a good one those places don't sound half bad, but sadly I'm faaar away from retirement haha

jack69 said...

You are a very insightful person Betty, but I think you have a little experience that most do not have yet, that of the husbands parents, and their last years.
The decision is tough, but I have at least one BIL who needs to settle for a retirement home, but just cannot bring himself to accept that is a part of aging.
I hope I will realize it. I loved the entire blog, great read!!
Thanks.....
From the other coast
Sherry & jack

Lynn Proctor said...

betty, i was just commenting on someone's blog this morning about getting older---not wanting to think about it haha---no retirement for my husband----counting on a miracle when the time comes :)

Linda said...

Wonderful retirement place! Downsizing years of accumulation is the hassle I'm determined to avoid but something I occasionally help my mom with.

Nice to look into all possibilities, tomorrow or health is not guaranteed.

Sounds like you had a nice weekend! Have a blessed Ash Wednesday.

Sharon said...

You pose an interesting couple of questions, Betty. First of all, my parents are at an age where their ability to stay at home is beginning to erode. And yes, it is putting an incredible amount of pressure on my siblings and me, trying to decide what is best for them in the future.

I had an elderly friend who lived in a place like the one you mentioned. I also thought it was wonderful in many ways. So, yes, I think I would consider this an option for myself at some point. I don't want my kids to ever, ever have to feel pressured or guilty over decisions that they might think would hurt my feelings. I always want them to know that I trust them, and I trust that their decisions are motivated by love.

The biggest advantage I see in these places is the community of people and activities. My parents are a bit isolated and bored now, but want to stay in their home.

It's a dilemma.

Sorry about this novel-length reply. It's an issue very close to my heart these days.

GOD BLESS!

Dana said...

I would definitely consider moving to a retirement community one day. Some of them are gorgeous, and I would feel better if our kids didn't need to worry about us.

Verna Lantz said...

I like my place now. I am hoping to stay here forever.
We'll see what God has planned. :)

Debby@Just Breathe said...

We are closer than you to retirement but we haven't done any research. I think it sounds like a great idea. I do know that we will downsize for sure. When my aunt and uncle passed away at 89 and 91 I knew I would never stay in our home that long. It was too much work and the house ended up being very neglected over time.

Joanne Noragon said...

My grandmother went to such an assisted living facility in the late 1970's, She went kicking and screaming, but when she gathered her senses she loved it.

Chatty Crone said...

I know you had your work cut out with your in-laws - but they left you with some great ideas. To not leave life with such a big mess. It is a good idea to know what you are going to do. I would love to sell right now - but I can't. Sandie

Graciewilde said...

Hi! How nice to meet you. I've seen your moniker on other blogs but this might be the first time I've been here. I LOVE your bench with a view! I am always on the look out for that too. I look forward to building a blog friendship.
As for retirement, it's out of reach right now so I don't think much about living options at that time. I really like the home we have in this small town and I am hoping to stay right here when I leave my job. My 90 year old mother lives in an apartment complex that is designed for the elderly. It is a wonderful community and has lots of good people, a community center with daily lunches, lots of classes and things. I would definitely consider such a complex if I could not stay in my house. But it's a long time away....

Mevely317 said...

Oh but I miss those progressive dinners! Gosh, the last time I participated was back in the 70's ... good times and good friends.

Yes, I'm one of those who'd move into a retirement community tomorrow if I could. Neither of us is particularly into yard work, and the pool is becoming a giant pain. Plus, I like the idea of built-in camaraderie plus security!

SweetMarie said...

That sounds like a wonderful way to live. I don't know what we will do. We have about 25 or 30 years to get it figured out though. :)

Marianne said...

My grandma (who passed away last month) lived in one of these facilities for the last 6 years or so. She was very happy there, but there was a lot of stress put on my dad & his siblings dealing with the finances, medical oversight & decisions, etc. My plan is to never grow old. Not sure if that's 100% doable, though.

Kit said...

That sounds like a 'safari' meal. I've never been to one but it looks like so much fun.

My grandparents live in sheltered housing, something similar to your lady, and it has been so beneficial for them, particularly recently while my Grandpa is so ill.

I think it would be nice to be retired but I've got a VERY long way to go before then!

Deanna said...

I would totally onsider such a place! But I'm not sure Jim would. He loves his outdoors and woods. I don't believe he could handle it if he is still able to get out, to not be able to just pick up and walk out his front door into nature. The progressive dinner party sounds like a great idea. I've done them with friends before, but never as a way to meet people. Something to think about...

Kat said...

There are some really lovely retirement homes around here. If I could no longer keep my home up by myself I would definitely move into a retirement community.

Tamera Brose said...

Read ALL the fine print. There are some grab me gotchas in some of those contracts, but if you find a good match I think they are great. Privacy and still help nearby and the outside care is done for you. My sister is in a community where you must be over 55 and she's quite happy.

Living Life said...

Those retirement communities are popping up everywhere here in PA. I think there is a real need for them. From what I've seen, I would most definitely consider a retirement community for myself! Nice!

Gramma 2 Many said...

I am not sure what we will do. Actually, just the other day, DH said that as long as we can live in our house we will. I guess we will cross that bridge when we come to it. I love the idea of a progressive dinner. Have given thought to organizing one a couple of times. Maybe I should just do it. :)

Damyanti said...

This place looks wonderful :)

Hollie said...

Fun idea with the dinner and dessert!! I would definitely consider something like that if it was affordable!! Sounds wonderful with all the extras!!

Tina@WhatWeKeep said...

My in laws just moved into one...they really like it. They are in their 80's, so it's made their lives so much easier. Health problems aren't such a worry since medical help is on the property. They are having a lot of fun. I'd definitely move to one when it came time.
Have a good weekend, Betty!

Martha@SeasideSimplicity said...

The progressive dinner sounds like a lot of fun. I've always tried to put something like that together with coworkers but it's never worked out, I finally gave up the idea.

I would most definitely not only consider, but would love to live in the type of place the woman you visited does. I begged and pleaded with my mother during her last 5 or so years but she flat out refused. It would make transition so much easier as we age, and the places around here are like living in 5 star hotels! The monthly payment sounds expensive but really isn't considering all utilities, cleaning service, meals, transportation, and all the other wonder amenities they have are included!

netablogs said...

I would consider moving into some sort of retirement apartments with assisted living options as needed (like you described). But when I've visited nursing homes in the past (visiting wth my kids with our homeschooling group years ago) , I felt so sorry for the seniors. I hope I never have to live in one of those in my last months or years.

The Brown Recluse said...

I really like the sound of the progressive dinner...I probably couldn't get Ole Boy to do that, though. haha

I don't think about retire too much...Ole Boy is much closer than I am, and I think he thinks about it, only in terms of having the house paid off, and not having to worry about that. (He does worry a little about it, though...troubling times.)

Personally, I like the idea of the retirement community...I could see myself doing that if I were alone.