The Next Great Adventure

Send to Kindle

For Bill and I, big changes often come out of the blue. We’ve been perfectly content and happy where we are. But less than a month ago we were in conversation with a friend who is about our age. We were talking about aging, aching bodies, brain farts, and a host of other things that inflict those of us who are moving on in years. She told us about a couple she knows who have sold their lovely dream home and moved into a new one-story home in a small, nearby development. They are loving their new place, meeting new neighbors, and the convenience of having the outside mainenance of their home taken care of for them. No more seasonal gutter cleaning, leaf raking, snow removal, lawn mowing, etc. Healthy and happy, they now have more time to travel and take advantage of leisure time they’d not experienced in the past.

As we were listening to our friend, both Bill and I realized we’d been thinking about a similar kind of move. Though we’d talked about it now and then, it was something that was way in the future. But with birthdays coming up in November and being in our mid-seventies, we have been aware of the struggles of other friends who have waited too long to accept the changes that aging brings. Some have gotten very ill, passed on, or are now moving into senior living facilities. Wanting to make the most of the years we have left, we want to live with dignity and grace while we can. And there has been the haunting question of what would life be like without the other? Would the one left behind be comfortable living where we are now … a big house that is also aging and needs continuing maintenance? Though the garden is small and exquisitely beautiful, I’ve been having a hard time keeping up with it as my body refuses to do what it used to do. And though I do loads of self-care including Egoscue, Pilates and Yoga, it still won’t go back to the way it was when I was twenty-five or even forty.

So we decided to go take a look at a small, new development not far from where we live now. And though we said we’d never live in a townhouse, we walked into the model that was open that afternoon and fell in love. During the next few days we toured other places, but at the end of the day we always went back to that first place in a quiet location with lovely gardens and walking trails in the woods next door. We put a hold deposit down on one of the last available lots that will be a finished home next June. We figured we’d need at least a year to clean this place out and prepare ourselves for the next chapter.

But God, the Universe, or whatever you may want to call that thing that helps us and directs us through life, had other things in mind. When we told our good friend and realestate broker, Bob, what we were doing, he found a finished resale available in the same development. It is an end unit with glass on three sides rather than on just two. We went to look at it, made an offer and it was immediately accepted. The unit is only a year old, and the seller lived there for only seven months. It is a four story home, but get this … it has an elevator for when our legs, knees, and other bodyparts start failing us. It is half the size of the home we’re in now but I’ll still have a fairly large studio on the top floor with a walkout veranda.

So here we go, ready to set out on our next adventure. This house will go on the market shortly and with lots of available help we look to move into our Out of Bounds townhome sometime in November. We will miss this gorgeous home and our wonderful neighbors here. But it’s time for us to simplify and to move on.  Life moves on and we need move with it. I’ll post pics as soon as I can get some.

I’ll keep you apprised as the adventure continues. In the meantime I hope you are all having a wonderful summer.

Are you setting out on any new adventures?


  1. Wow, Joan. This is a big change. Sounds both exciting and wise.

    Hope to visit after we return from Pittsburgh. Love that you have trees and walking trails nearby with all the advantages of a new house designed for this stage in your life.


    • Joan Rough says:

      Thanks, Shirley! I’d love to have you visit and knowe your year in Pittsburgh will be outstanding!

  2. Sharon Martinelli says:

    This is so exciting to hear. You do have a lovely home and if you are like me , you probably don’t use most of it. Congratulations.

    • Joan Rough says:

      Thanks for your visit here, Sharon. It is exciting. The problem is we do use most of the space but we must get rid of stuff so making us go to smaller space will really help. Also, just thinking of getting rid of stuff is making me feel lighter!!

  3. Yay, Joan! Sounds so exciting! And you will still have a studio, which is great news. You need an outlet for all of that creativity. Congratulations on your new adventure.

  4. Joan, this sounds perfect and very wise! We are in the same discussion but can’t bear to leave the farm.. yet. So happy you are happy about this next new adventure. I look firearms to hearing about it. J

  5. Joan Rough says:

    Thanks, Kathy. Leaving your beautiful farm would be very difficult, I know. I’ll keep you posted.

  6. Joan, This is very interesting and wonderful that it all came together. I have thought about selling my house and moving into a town center neighborhood where there is more diversity and cultural events within walking distance. I stay in my single family home because it is close to where my sons live, which is a definite plus as they drop by a couple times a week. But, who knows, as time marches on, where I may go. I agree with Shirley that it sounds as if you made a wise decision. I look forward to reading more about your next chapter.

    • Joan Rough says:

      Susan, Thanks so much for your comments. We have to be aware of what works for us as individuals. Not everyone would make the adjustments we are making. Time often brings us to change our minds about what is best for us. Simplifying is what we’re called to do at this moment. We don’t know what will happen down the road and this new place feels right for us. I will continue writing about our adventure through aging and how we’re dealing with life as time passes.

  7. Joan — Soooooo very happy that you and Bill found the perfect location that will meet all of your needs. Woohoo!

  8. How exciting, and courageous! But, I like the way it all came together for you. That’s when you know it’s right. I work on myself not to be fretful about this decision, but to stay open and aware to what the universe brings us. Change presents itself without our help, doesn’t it! The downsizing is a powerful exercise in letting go and I know I will feel “lighter” too as I begin the process. Wishing you and your hubby all good things in your new adventure!

  9. Lovely post, Joan! There’s truly something about a deep acceptance of where we are that opens up possibilities. I’m excited for you as you embark on this next step! 🙂

    • Joan Rough says:

      Yes, when you accept where you are things begin to open up. Thanks so much, Jill. We’re very excited!!

  10. Congratulations on making such a big decision, Joan. When things are meant to be, I think the obstacles fall away as they have for you and Bill. I’m glad you’ll still have studio space. Your current home is, indeed, beautiful, but I anticipate you’ll make your new home just as lovely. Good luck with the move.

    • Joan Rough says:

      Thank you so much, Carol. I think the new home will be lovely. I’m looking forward to making it ours.

  11. Clara Boza says:

    Wonderful news, Joan! I’ve been following your journey since we last saw each other here in Asheville, and send much love.

    • Joan Rough says:

      Clara, So good to hear from you. Thanks for following me and staying in touch. I haven’t been down your way very often over the past couple of years but will look you up next time I’m there. Hope all is well with you and yours!