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Home is where the heart is

Seabrook’s welcoming atmosphere sparkles during the holidays

Created date

November 22nd, 2011

This time last year, Doris Beaver had just moved into her new apartment home at Seabrook, an Erickson Living community in Tinton Falls, N.J. With a recovering broken shoulder, she set out her small velvet Christmas tree, a musical angel, and hung pine bows from her doorway, determined to get into the Christmas spirit. Life is what you make it, says Doris, whose positive attitude, along with the family atmosphere of Seabrook, showed her that home is where the heart is.

All in a year s time

Having moved to escape the maintenance and stairs of her three-story townhouse in Kensington, Pa., Doris says, I was scared [moving to my new apartment home] because it was going to be entirely different from my old life. But since moving, Doris has acclimated to the community, feeling more and more at home. I ve made friends with neighbors on my hall, met some people at dinner, and I want to join a knitting or crocheting club, she says. Seabrook has more than 150 groups, clubs, and activities for her choosing. Additionally, she s made some modifications to her one-bedroom apartment with patio to make it more homey. She had a counter nook built in her kitchen and has added her personal touch in d cor. She also gardened on her patio in spring and summer.

Holiday spirit

Though Doris hasn t made plans yet for her Christmas celebration, she has plenty of options and opportunities to get into the holiday spirit. Seabrook starts the holiday season December 2 with Dance for Joy, a holiday performance by local children held in the auditorium on campus. December 9, cellist E. Zoe Hassman kicks off the community s yearlong classical concert series. December 12, the Yuletide Carolers will stroll through the community dressed in Victorian garb, singing carols. And Seabrook s own Sociable Singers and Silvertones will host winter concerts accompanied by a food drive.

Celebrations with peers

In addition, the interfaith community will hold Christian and Jewish services in December. Another Seabrook newcomer, Helen Satter, has already witnessed the holiday spirit of her new community. Upon moving in on August 30, she celebrated the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah. Seabrook had a special dinner in the Atrium for those of us celebrating the Jewish New Year. It was very lovely; they did a beautiful job, Helen says. Helen s husband passed away shortly before she moved to Seabrook, spurring her to consider the community atmosphere where she already had several friends. She says living there has made a huge difference in her ability to enjoy life, especially during the holidays. [The Rosh Hashanah celebration] made the holiday quite special because holidays can be difficult for someone who is newly alone, she says. I feel that it helps being with peers and people you like. Helen had been coming to Seabrook once a week to play bridge for some time, so the transition was easy for her, she says. Surprisingly, I feel pretty much at home. I love my apartment. My husband was an artist, and I have a lot of his artwork around, she says. I m surrounded by all the things that I like. Helen will celebrate Hanukkah this month with her new community of friends, both old and new.