Latest Construction Pics August 1, 2011

Here are the latest construction photos for The Lodge at Old Trail, a new senior community in Crozet (near Charlottesville), Virginia. Our active retirement community, part of multi-generational Old Trail Village, is quickly taking shape. The roof is under construction. Yay!

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On The Radio

Senior Community - Lodge At Old TrailI was recently asked to be on the radio. Michael Guthrie, CEO and managing broker of Roy Wheeler Real Estate does a talk show every Saturday morning on WINA 1070 AM. He noticed that there was a lot of talk going on about my new Senior Living Community going up in the heart of Old Trail Village, by the village center, in Crozet Virginia. He was curious about how The Lodge at Old Trail was going to integrate into an already bustling area in Old Trail.

As I mentioned on his show, The Lodge gives the area a multi-generational mix that is so important to the community. Its so nice to be able walk out our front door and go to Trailside Coffee to get your ‘cup of joe’ and the morning paper. Sometimes you might even run into your son or daughter taking grandchildren to school. Its all right there. Its not a chore to have the kids come out to the country to see you. And when your kids and grandkids go on a trip there is so much to do in and around Crozet. Time just flies until they come back. You have your own activities and schedule and hopefully you can fit them in!

Just wanted to post the podcast for those that are interested:

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I want to thank Michael for letting be on his show. Truly an informative show about, not just what Roy Wheeler is doing, but actually about the whole market. Its nice to have someone that is an authority on Real Estate Matters and isn’t always trying to sell.

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Downsizing, what a mess!

See the bike fender

Packing the minivan

My wife and I moved very recently. We left a beautiful house in Baltimore, MD to move to Charlottesville, VA. The reason for the move is to build a senior Living community, The Lodge at Old Trail, located in the middle of Old Trail Village in Crozet, VA. I mention that for two reasons. The first reason, because I am downsizing just like many seniors who will move into my community. The second reason, I am renting instead of owning, as with the Lodge at Old Trail, which is a rental community not a buy-in.



It’s funny. You speak to many people about downsizing, but if you are not doing it yourself you really can’t understand what people are going through. What will fit where? What should I give away? What should I try to sell? What should I just throw away (the coffee tin of all different size nails?) There are so many issues to think of, not to mention when I do move to a new place will I make new friends?

Well, I am here to tell you that I feel better. We did give some things away, we did figure where the furniture we really liked fit, we did sell a couple of things and I must say I did throw away the tin of nails. And yes I did meet nice a gentlemen that was cutting his lawn that welcomed me to the neighborhood. All a good start.

We live in a house half the size of our old house and everything fits. I think it is more that we as a family are really the most important fit. My wife and three children are happy wherever we are and that is the most important part. It is a freeing feeling not to have so much baggage. You don’t always need so many choices. To be happy and healthy are the two most important choices and when you make the choice to be happy everything else works.

Everyone happy

getting ready to move

The other part of moving is now I don’t own anymore, I rent. That is not to say I still don’t change the faucet when it starts leaking or fix the door when it doesn’t shut right. I like to do those things and I am sure my landlord is happy I can do repairs, but the worries of owning the house and all the bills, the land taxes, the insurance are lifted. I now have more time just to walk my dogs and tend the tomatoes I planted in the community garden. My golf game….I think that will always be a worry!

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Growing like the Garden and the Sunflowers, The Lodge at Old Trail!

sunflowers - senior community - The Lodge At Old Trail

Sunflowers, The Lodge At Old Trail, Senior Living Community

Heirloom Tomatoes Growing

Every day I wake up early, and the first thing that I see are the sunflowers in my field. I stroll to my garden and marvel at the tomatoes, cucumbers and watermelons exploding with growth. I then drive over to our new Senior Living Community, The Lodge at Old Trail, and contemplate which is growing faster. The Lodge’s second floor is being framed right now. To think that only a few short months ago we were just coming out of the ground. The similarities are maybe too cliché to mention, so I won’t.


As we harvest our vegetables during the summer, and watch the doves fly in September over our sunflowers, we will be that much closer to having a roof over our heads at The Lodge. As with the garden, we will work over the winter to plan for our planting season in the spring. For The Lodge, the work we do under the roof during winter will prepare for the newest senior community in the Charlottesville area to open its doors in the spring. There is so much interest in The Lodge….. people are sending deposits to move in and become part of this growing community.

Multi generational community growing

Growing taller - The Lodge At Old Trail, Senior Living Community

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Lodge At Old Trail Construction Video

This video shows the latest construction photos of The Lodge At Old Trail, a senior community in Charlottesville, VA. Learn more about this active, vibrant new development in the multi-generational community of Old Trail at

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Fighting for those before us and after.

Standing for us!

Give thanks for our men and women of the armed services. Thank you.

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Today at The Lodge at Old Trail Senior Community construction site we are putting steel framing in. The steel has been arriving the last couple of days. We have two cranes about to do the heavy lifting. The foundations are all poured and basement walls for the underground parking are up and ready to support the steel beams. We will put all the beams in place and then put the decking on and pour some more cement for the main floor. Martin Brothers Contractors have been doing a great job pulling all of this together and on time, even with all this rain.
We have over fifty workers on the site today and more will be coming in the next few weeks. Its nice to know that while building The Lodge at Old Trail, a Senior Living Community, that is needed and wanted in this area, that we are also providing hundreds of jobs. A win win! Please feel free to come out and bring the kids to watch the cranes work.

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Kaiser Rolls

Happiness, Content


Kaiser Rolls

You might be wondering why someone would write about Kaiser Rolls in a Senior Living community blog.

I was born in Charlottesville, but moved to New York City decades ago. Growing up, I developed a fondness for what New Yorkers call, “a buttered roll.” On any street corner or deli–almost anywhere in NYC, for that matter–they sell buttered rolls. The rolls are actually Kaiser Rolls, baked fresh every day. They are crispy on the outside with soft, chewy bread on the inside. They can be cut in half and smothered with salty butter. There is nothing like a buttered roll and a cup of coffee, regular, (meaning milk and sugar) in the morning or later in the day to keep you going. Around the city, you can see long lines of customers waiting for this delicious treat on nearly every block. And if you want to speak like a real New Yorker, this is what you say, “Coffee regular, buttered roll.”

In my travels across the country I always ask people if they know where I can get a buttered roll. Buttered roll? They all seem to think I am a little off. I try to explain, but people never quite get what I am asking for: something that is reliable, that satisfies both a physical and emotional need. New Yorkers–or aficionados of buttered rolls–get this.

Now why I am I talking about this? After nearly half a century, I am back in Charlottesville (Crozet, to be exact), building a Senior Living Community. The other day, I met a lady who lives in Old Trail Village, which is the development where I’m building my retirement community. She had been a nurse for many years in Long Island, New York. While talking, we got on the subject of buttered rolls, a topic near and dear to my stomach and mind. She told me about her father, a former New Yorker who moved to New Hampshire. She says her 83-year-old dad leads an active life, driving all around the “Granite” state. The one problem he has is that he has yet to find his beloved buttered rolls. She says he loves New Hampshire, but feels bereft without his New York-style buttered rolls.

I told her not to worry because he would soon lose interest in finding a buttered roll. Of course, I knew this probably wouldn’t happen. Clearly, the longing for buttered rolls lingers. She smiled with a weird expression that begged for a follow-up question. “So, how long has your father lived there?” Her reply: “20 years!”

You see, certain feelings, smells, and tastes remain with us, no matter where we move. That satisfying taste, the scent of fresh bread, the crunch of the crust, the salty butter, washed down with hot coffee, will always stay with me. Now that I am opening my own Senior Living Community, my first priority will be to have the chef make buttered rolls every day. Here at The Lodge at Old Trail, which is in the middle of a multi-generational community, I plan on passing this wonderful taste to all those around. Children who visit, the neighborhood grandchildren of my residents walking by after school for a visit–all will get a buttered roll to store in their stomachs and memory banks. And hopefully, when my friend’s father comes down for a visit from New Hampshire, he will feel at home with a simple cup of coffee and a buttered roll.

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Grandmother’s day

Since it is Mother’s day, I wanted to share this article that my cousin, Page Evans, wrote. The picture below is of my Aunt and Uncle Tommy and my nieces. Uncle Tommy and Mary Page are exactly what I mean when speaking of active seniors. They are always on the go, enjoying their life and the lives of their children and grandchildren. Truly a family that understands and lives the concept of sharing what they know with the generations below them!

Tom and Mary Page Evans, Page’s parents, with daughters Peyton and Katherine Schwartz
“Life happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”
If there were a manual for mothers, this quote from John Lennon could be the header. The truth is, we never know what we’re going to get. Our kids surprise us in every way imaginable. If we’re lucky, it’s mostly good. But we all know life–and our children–are not perfect. And we, as parents–and people–are not perfect. We need to try our best to stay positive and flexible when “life happens.” Then there are our computers. Yep, they can be imperfect as well–especially when our children make too many movies on them, overloading the system.
(Photo by: Page Evans) Happy Mom’s Day!
So on that note, let me tell you what just happened to me. I was busy writing a Mother’s Day column for The Georgetown Dish. Getting started was problematic. I couldn’t figure out what my message was. Did I want to write about my mother, my role as a mother, what we try to teach our children, what our children teach us. As I was writing, I knew I was teetering on being overly sappy. I was, as my minister Luis Leon likes to say, “indulging my nostalgia.”

In any case, I’m sitting at a table at Patisserie Poupon, fully loaded on carbs and caffeine, typing up a storm. Blah, blah, blah…Be kind…Be polite…Be happy…Be grateful…Help others. The screen goes black. Everything I’d just written was sucked into some black hole.
Help! I’m in the middle of writing about how grateful I am for my children and how important gratitude is in life. Hmmmmm. Looks like the computer is not so grateful for all the movies my little darlings have made.
So here’s my first thought: I think I’m going to cry. But I’m in a public place, so this isn’t a viable option.
Second thought: Smash the computer. Now what would I do if my children did this? Definitely not an option.
Third thought: Think about what I’d say to my children.
Good question. What would I tell them? I’d tell them what I always do: Take a deep breath, have a glass of water, and go for a walk. Things will be better when you get back. Have faith.
So that’s exactly what I did. And where did I get this advice? My mother, of course

Multi generational

My Aunt and Uncle, with their Grandchildren

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Construction Pictures for New Senior Living Community

I will begin adding pictures of the construction of The Lodge at Old Trail, Senior Living Community in Charlottesville, VA so you can see the progress. As most of you know it has been raining. This slows the process of building down when we are in the begining phases. We have all the footings in around the building and all the pier footings done. We are now building the walls of the basement. The first section of wall, 180 feet long, was poured several weeks ago. These pictures attached are of the next 180 feet that was poured last week.

The Lodge at Old Trail, Senior Living Community

The Wall, Lodge At Old Trail, Senior Living Community

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