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How couple finds comfort amid transition

Created date

March 22nd, 2010

Elizabeth and John Sherrill s decision to leave Chappaqua, N.Y., was months old, but their move to Linden Ponds felt abrupt nonetheless. [caption id="attachment_8814" align="alignright" width="280" caption="John and Elizabeth Sherrill hold hands outside their Linden Ponds apartment home, by a sign their daughter made celebrating their new place. "] When their house hadn t sold after a few months on the market, the Sherrills decided to put it up for rent. As soon as they did, a family responded, wanting to move in the very next week. The Sherrills negotiated themselves another week, leaving them with two weeks to pack up their house of 50 years.

Packing and parties

Though they didn t have as much time as they would have liked to pack and downsize, the Sherrills did make time to host a goodbye party, to which they invited neighbors from the four surrounding houses. These casual relationships had meant so much, Mr. Sherrill says, reflecting on the various encounters he and his wife had with their neighbors. [caption id="attachment_8812" align="alignright" width="280" caption="The Sherrills continue their tradition of playing a game of backgammon every evening."][/caption] Mrs. Sherrill adds, It was a chance for us to say, We love you you matter to us. Moving day was similarly filled with love. The Sherrills had help from their three children, including their daughter who lives in Hingham, plus Mrs. Sherrill s sister and one grandchild. We were pretty much moved in on the first day, Mrs. Sherrill says. Shortly after, they welcomed family, friends, and a rector from Chappaqua (who now works in Massachusetts) for a house blessing ceremony in their new apartment home, followed by dinner in one of the private dining rooms atLinden Ponds.

Newness and continuity

Settling into life atLinden Ponds, the Sherrills found much of the same neighborliness that they left in Chappaqua. Whether he was at the farmer s market or in the hallway, Mr. Sherrill encountered people offering to answer any questions he had about the community. It sets a tone right away, he says. We were very impressed with that. On their own, the Sherrills have sought continuity while embracing the newness of their community. Each night, the couple plays backgammon before dinner. It is a series that has lasted four decades, he says, and the two are now well-matched. Shortly after they moved toLinden Ponds,the Sherrills went in search of a new church to call their own. At the first church they visited, St. John the Evangelist in Hingham, they met a man whose previous parish had been next door to their house in Chappaqua. They took that as a positive sign. They continue to work as writers, with offices in theirLinden Pondsapartment home, and less than two months after moving in, they took off to travel. Visiting various locations on a 5,000-mile road trip, the Sherrills say, was part business, part pleasure, and part to prove to ourselves that we can do this and we are the same people we were. Since returning from their trip, they continue to set up their apartment just right. They had the valance from their previous house redone to fit theirLinden Pondsliving room. I walked into our house and there was the valance hanging up. I did the male version of breaking into tears, Mr. Sherrill says. It was that my wife felt at home. A new addition is a sign made by the Sherrills daughter, which hangs outside their door. It references a popular children s book and the name they lovingly gave their new abode, nestled on the terrace level of Pratt s Crossing. The sign reads: Hobbit Hole and that means comfort.