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The personal touch

Laurie Phillips helps seniors embrace life at Brooksby

Created date

January 16th, 2015
The copper bowl in Connee Turcotte’s apartment at Brooksby is the same one that Personal Moving Consultant Laurie Phillips’ father remembers as a child in Lewiston, Maine.
The copper bowl in Connee Turcotte’s apartment at

For Connee Turcotte, the decision to move to Erickson Living community in Peabody, Mass., from her house of 55 years in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, didn’t come lightly.

“I wanted to live closer to my daughter in Beverly Farms,” says Connee. “But it was still hard to leave my neighbors, my church family, and my friends from aerobic dance class. I didn’t know much about Peabody or the surrounding area.”

That trepidation is normal, says Brooksby Personal Moving Consultant Laurie Phillips, who works with prospective residents to help them transition to the community.

“It’s a big change to sell a home you may have lived in for a long time,” says Phillips. “My job is to act as a point person, someone to oversee the moving process.”

Conversation over coffee

For most prospective residents, their journey to Brooksby begins with a home visit by Phillips, whose services are complimentary for anyone moving to an Erickson Living community.

“Once someone joins our priority list and expresses an interest in moving to the community, I’ll schedule a home visit,” says Phillips. “It gives me a chance to learn their story, why they’re moving, and what they’d like to bring with them.”

For Connee, having Phillips visit her in her house eased the fear of not knowing anyone at Brooksby.

“Laurie drove up to Cape Elizabeth to visit me,” says Connee. “We started talking and realized we had a unique connection.”

Connee’s late husband’s aunt, Blanche Turcotte Jacques, owned a candy shop on Lisbon Street in Lewiston, Maine, the same town where Phillips’ father grew up.

“My father remembers the candy shop and the big copper kettle where Blanche made her candies and toffee,” says Phillips, who’s from South Portland, Maine. “Connee inherited that kettle and brought it with her to Brooksby. It was neat to discover we had a shared piece of history.”

A nudge toward vibrant living

For Connee, having a personal connection with Phillips proved to be a lifeline as she sold her home and moved to Brooksby.

“Laurie has been an angel to me,” says Connee. “After I moved into my apartment, I invited her over. She asked if I had any hobbies or interests I wanted to pursue.”

Connee, a budding photographer, showed Laurie some of the photographs she’d taken at Brooksby.

“Connee captured these amazing images from around the community and made them into greeting cards,” says Phillips. “I often send a handwritten note after a home visit, and I knew these cards would be a perfect fit.”

Phillips purchased several of Connee’s cards and encouraged her to make more.

“Laurie builds a special connection with our residents,” says Sales Director Sue Davis. “She goes out of her way to reach out to people on an personal level.”

Local flavor

In addition to Connee’s one-of-a-kind cards, Phillips finds unique gifts at area shops that she gives to prospective residents.

“I love to promote local businesses,” says Phillips. “We have several people who move to Brooksby from outside the area, so it’s a great way to get a taste of local flavor.”

On home visits, Phillips will often arrive with an assortment of truffles from Winfrey’s Fudge & Chocolates in nearby Rowley. For four-legged friends, she brings a bag of jerky strips from Dog Gone Dog Treats.

“The dog treats are made locally,” says Phillips. “Pets are important because they’ll be moving to Brooksby, too.”

Take the first step

For those considering a move to Brooksby, the New Year is a great time to take the first step.

“Scheduling a home visit gives prospective residents the chance to learn about my services,” says Phillips. “It also gives me an idea of how I can help with the transition to Brooksby. I’m happy to be a moving coach and help with all the steps along the way.”

To learn more about Brooksby or to schedule a visit with Laurie Phillips, call the sales office at 1-800-290-4320.