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JUNE 2018
The First Senior Co-Housing Community in Port Townsend, WA
Memorial Day weekend brought us out for some delicious BBQ. Mike manned the grill and cooked up something for everybody. Yum!
The weather cooperated and we all enjoyed each other's company along with the good food.
** UP NEXT! **
Quimper Village and 
McCamant & Durrett Architects are joining forces to host the Senior Cohousing Weekend Intensive on June 15-17. The conference will take place on Bainbridge Island and will include a tour of Quimper Village in Port Townsend. If you are interested in cohousing and are considering starting or joining a project, send an email to Lindy at
She will help you get signed up for the next conference.
Our weekend intensive is full and we'll be watching these attendees rev up the next cohousing community!
Transitioning to Springtime
Quimper Village was completed and ready to move in last October. Phyllis and Ivar, the first to move in were completely settled within a week – astounding to the rest of us who may still be unpacking boxes. Passionate gardener and wonder woman, Phyllis, even had her garden laid out and partially planted within the first couple of weeks!
Then the Big Muddy emerged. November marked the beginning of one of the rainiest winters in recent history challenging our nascent stormwater drainage system. Lakes emerged where none had been planned, while retention ponds remained dry. Oy! (as we say in the trade). So while Phyllis and her across-the-lane neighbor Cherie slogged through the mud to install their new gardens with many plants they had brought with them from their previous yards, most of us didn't even think about planting in the soggy mess.
Many valiant efforts by our Maintenance Team to solve the drainage issues finally paid off right about the time that the skies turned blue. Now, finally, we could start thinking Spring and beautifying our yards. Some fences went up and some plants were planted by a few visionary individuals – that means you, Pam.  Then the crimson clover that was planted as a cover crop for our yards rose higher and higher with, well, crimson blooms.
Now, just as we individualized the interiors of our homes, we are all in the process of expressing our distinctive styles in the treatment of our yards – bold and colorful, more subtle and native, or not quite there yet.
Bringing this to the personal level, I too have blossomed. After living in what felt like relative isolation in a spectacular setting in Suquamish for the four years preceding moving to Quimper Village, I felt like I had become a hermit. Surrounded by astounding natural beauty, but devoid of human contact day-to-day, coming to Quimper Village has allowed the gregarious seed within me to blossom into an active community participant involved in many village activities with warm social interactions every day. 
Ooops!  Gotta go help prepare tonight’s community dinner… 
Happy Spring!                                                              -Araya
Watering the Runners/Walkers of the
6K Jefferson Healthcare Rhody Run
        On the morning of May 20th, volunteers Sue H, Nancy, Mike, Bobbie, Janet, Bill, Araya gathered with their chairs, tables, water vats, and paper cups at the west side of Quimper Village property on the public path to pass out water and encouragement to the runners and walkers of the short Rhody Run (6K), and to keep their eyes peeled for anyone who might be struggling. Jerry, as a volunteer policeman, watched for cars at the entrance from F Street into the public trail.
        The annual 12K
Jefferson Healthcare Rhody Run was celebrating its 40th year.  The shorter 6K version was celebrating its second year.
        The volunteers were ready (shown here are Araya, Jerry, Bill, Bobbie, Nancy and Janet). They waited. Nervous glances toward F Street. Then Nancy cupped her hand to her hearing-aid and shushed everyone.  “I think I hear them!”
        They came. “Lots of kids, laughing and yelling,” Nancy reported, “But always polite and thanking us.” One enthusiastic lad poured his cup over his head and took a second to drink. Then parents pushing strollers with babies and toddlers, mother and daughter teams, seniors and a whole family wearing straw hats. And others too. Rhody Run Royalty, the queen and two princesses stopped to have their pictures taken with our volunteers.
      Proceeds from the Rhody Run support future Runs and help fund school sports programs and youth oriented non-profit organizations.
      This year’s winners were … all of those who participated …and the volunteers that passed out water… and the Port Townsend Community.      
      ----- JimD and (cub reporter) Nancy
End of Life Washington

We had a fine turnout on May 25th for End of Life Washington seminar.  32 participants heard "The Death Sisters" (actual sisters Judy McCay and Mary Griffith) give an excellent presentation on how to take charge of our end of life issues. They easily held our attention for three hours. The Seattle Times recently had an article on this topic, showing how vital it is for each of us to plan for this future event. Like any other part of life, death needs planning and thought. 
Toula had her first birthday and several members gathered to honor her and her person, Araya. Here are some of Toula's favorite people, including Araya and Grace lighting a candle and singing over a specially crafted dog food and biscuits 'cake' made by Grace. 
Sharing Quimper Village
       “Sharing” is a word buzzing all around us today. People call Uber or Lyft for a shared car; “bike share” stands crop up in cities; TED Talks has programs on sharing communities in Africa as a model. Sharing is good! 
         Quimper Village is a senior cohousing community, where some things move more slowly (e.g., the members), but in sharing we’re ‘way out there on the bleeding edge’. We have several shared meals per week in our Common House. People share cars for grocery shopping, medical appointments, or trips to Sequim or Silverdale. Garden tools wander all over our community, and the QV golf cart carries people, dirt or other freight.  
         The QV shop is home to both individual projects (Jerry’s deck, Doug’s and Mack’s shelves) and teams of Woodchips working on community projects like storage cubicles or signs. The art studio gives individual artists room and support for their work and for classes on collages or calligraphy. 
         Sharing makes economic sense. By sharing rides or big shop tools we save money individually and as a group. Our Common House is a great place to meet, drink coffee, watch a movie or throw an anniversary party. Our common meals give each cook an opportunity to try new recipes and sharpen some skills while everyone not cooking gets an evening off. And we eat well, often for less than it would cost us for meals in our separate homes. We each have three “extra” bedrooms and baths — the two guest rooms in the Common House for visiting grandchildren or short-term caregivers.  
         The key to all this sharing is the community sense. We’re all here because we choose to be part of a community, living with friends and doing things together. We share our goods, but more importantly we share our lives. That’s hard to value in dollars but priceless in more basic values.  We still have our private homes and private lives, as much as we want — but being lonely at QV would take serious effort.                                                --Jack
  Gardens, Gardens Everywhere

The first fully realized Master Gardener classes started in Washington State in 1973. Another seventeen years would pass before Jefferson County ran their first training sessions through the Washington State University Extension Office.

When Sally Robbins became Extension Agent in 1985, all Master Gardener trainings for Jefferson County were given in Clallam County. Some of the folks that had finished training there, provided plant clinic days at the local Extension Office.

Sally, along with her Administrative Assistant Pam Rondeau, was able to get the first Jefferson County Master Gardeners Training started in 1990. There were about fifteen people in that first class. Currently there are approximately 70 active Master Gardeners in Jefferson County.

Two Quimper Village residents, Cherie and Jeanette started their own Master Gardener training in other areas of the county over 23 years ago. The training was a bit different in those days with focus and volunteer hours varying widely. Both women recall that when they began their training (one in Clallam County and the other in Nebraska) there was more of a focus on how and when to use pesticides. The focus soon shifted to helpful insect and companion planting to minimize the use of chemicals.

Cherie (left) spent a lot of her volunteer time working on a four to five-acre lot belonging to Master Gardeners in Clallam County. She found great value in the training and believes that it would be useful for almost everyone. 

Jeanette (below) did much of her volunteer Master Gardener time working at farmer market booths and the food co-op, assisting the public with questions about plants and pests. She created a booklet on easy herbs to grow and currently maintains an area in her church landscape garden. Jeanette found that her training opened her eyes about what to plant and how to maintain a garden.

Although Quimper Village has several other successful self-taught gardeners, the actual training with Master Gardeners by Cherie and Jeanette has provided useful information available to share with all levels of gardeners. Knowledgeable experience is something that sticks with you through a lifetime of gardening and the knowledge is there to share all around.                                                                           --Pam
Irene led a few members outside to gather wild flowers. Then, back in the art studio, she shows us how to press the flowers. In a few weeks, we'll gather again to create individual bookmarks. One of the finer things about life in QV is all the sharing and learning that happens here.
--- Quimper Village: a little history, without worrying too much about dates, and with just a little imagination here or there because it makes a better story. In other words, history the way it should be, as described, mulled over, sometimes invented just a little, by Jack Salmon. This article was written in July 2015.
                The Danes may have invented the cohousing model but Chuck Durrett and Katie McCamant quickly recognized it as a great idea, studied it by living in cohousing in Denmark — they even learned Danish! — and brought it back to the US. Here they spread the idea, brought in what might truly be called converts, and by now have helped over 50 cohousing groups “get it built.” Among them are a bunch of folks calling themselves Quimper Village, in Port Townsend, WA. Us.  
                Pat Hundhausen found the
Durrett-McCamant books on cohousing and understood their importance! There are other writings about cohousing, but the D-M books are the Rosetta Stone: they take various sometimes esoteric ideas and anecdotes, translate them to produce a philosophy and a style, then translate them again onto a how-to level, for actually DOING cohousing: Step One is this, Step Two that, Step Three you put your left arm out and you shake it all about, and right on up to when you move into your house in a cohousing community you helped build. Any architect will do some of those things, but M-D go well beyond home design and construction. Quite a package!  So what’s in it? How much does it cost. 
                 “Quite a lot” answers both, actually. Chuck & Katie tell you what you need for good co-housing, where and how to get it, and what to do with it: philosophy, community-building, marketing, selling, designing, building, and even how to live there. They are cohousing missionaries who will shepherd you until you are baptized in the holy waters.  
                  Chuck is Moses, the guru who leads the group in its building and decision-making process, and the architect who designs the buildings. Katie is a holy spirit, who works mostly unseen to watch over details and light a bush or two along the way. She develops the initial financial guesswork and chops a path through the money jungle. She tends to be pretty accurate because she’s chopped the path many times before and learned a lot. They really work at following the True Path, even if converts start to stray now and then. Many of us have heard Chuck, in some private conversation or muttering to himself, comment about how doing X costs too much or is environmentally doubtful. Katie constantly reminds people that doing Y or Z will cost more, or that doing AB will cost more now but save money later. And they tell us when it’s time to call the lawyer, or the soil consultant, or for more wine. 
                   We’re not done yet. It takes a year or more to go from planning a house to pounding that last nail, then getting the occupancy permit — and the mortgage!  A developer who decides to build a new MacMansion Shadows subdivision pads her price to let her absorb some of the uncertain costs she knows will come with a year’s delay, and she sells you a package. You buy model B-2 for a set price because it comes closest to what you’d really like. The developer lets you decide between carpet that is blue, or gold, or the color of that slime that oozes out of the compost pile. A developer who guesses right on costs makes money. If not, she has to eat it, or go bankrupt. 
                  Developers, who build and sell houses for a living, love to have clients who buy the house idea, then start issuing change orders! “We want you to move that wall and put in a big window there so we’ll have a grand setting for our bronze statue of a pig!” The developer will be happy to change whatever you want, because he can charge you a generous price for doing it. A great way to make some extra money! 
                   We’re our own developer. If prices go up we have to pay more. Much can happen, sometimes beyond our control. to raise or lower our costs. Our City wanted more landscaping. Ouch! More money! Or maybe the price of countertops drops — less money! With Chuck and Katie’s help in “value engineering,” we’ve made a lot of decisions that mean we’ll get a lot of house for our money, whatever happens. One big question remains: can we keep ourselves from making it even worse with change orders? 
                    Every now and then I think about something I would like to have in our new unit in QV, on Cane Lane just off Green Bananas Street. But it would cost $$, and I can just hear Chuck mutter “they have too much money,” or perhaps “this is production housing, not custom.” We’ve made our decisions on what we want for houses; now we have to stick with them. We developers have to restrain ourselves, and that can be hard!  I really do like that pig statue! 
                   So how did we make these decisions that put us in this awkward position?  That’s Chapter IV.                                            ---- Jack
Oh, those weeds!!
In addition to working on their own front and back yards, some volunteers are also caring for the great expanse of property on our west side, trying to keep the vegetation under control.
Below are PamD, Janet and Jack hauling away scotch broom.
Sherry, Grace and Howard tackle the hillside.
John battles a branch.
Mack is hauling bags of greens.
PamD and the crew dragging branches away.
Janet rests on her front porch after pulling and hauling weeds. "Yep, it's worth it!"
Newsletter Team: JimD, Araya, Cindy, PamC, Jack, and Cheron
Extra photos by Nancy, Araya, Grace, SueH and Mena - thanks!
Copyright © - 2018 Quimper Village, All rights reserved.

3105 Sage Lane
Port Townsend, WA 98368

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Quimper Village · 3107 Sage Lane · Port Townsend, WA 98368 · USA

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