A 55+ Community in North Fort Myers, Florida

March - April 2018

Edition No. 13

Welcome!

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Darlene's Corner
 

Darlene

2018 has been a fun-filled year so far for our Tara Woods residents and guests! Check out what we’ve done already this year, and get a sneak preview of what’s to come.

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Darlene's Corner

Darlene

2018 has been a fun-filled year for our Tara Woods residents and guests. Here’s a quick recap of what we’ve already done this year, and a sneak preview of what’s to come.

  • January was an extremely busy month for us. We held the Orange Sunshine Band Show, Tara Woods elected new board members, our softball team raised money with a delicious spaghetti dinner, bingo hosted a full house each week, we had a two-day Open House for our residents, we held our big Yard Sale, and we had our Open House for the general public the following weekend. What a month!
  • Tara Woods also hosted the third annual Braving the Cold for a Cause run/walk, sponsored by Radiology Regional. It was held on Saturday, January 6 with close to 80 participants and sponsors for the event. The final week of January we saw the Mammography Mobile come through.
  • February proved to be another busy month with Super Bowl parties, A Night at the Races, our Valentine’s Day party, Happy Hour each week, another great Clubhouse concert with the famous Del Prados, and the Resident Appreciation Day provided by Hometown America with games and great food.
  • March looks to be jam-packed with events for our residents, including the Pancake Breakfast; the annual play, “Adam’s Eve;” our St. Patrick’s Day Party with games, corn beef, and cabbage; and the annual Chorus Show put on by our residents.

Please check the boards in the Clubhouse for times and ticket prices for all our local functions.

Best,

Darlene

Bailey Speaks
 

Bailey the dog

Bailey has a lot to say on keeping your pets warm in the cold weather. Although the weather has warmed up, this is a great read and an important reference. A lot of the winter-rules apply to summer, too. Read on to learn more.

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Bailey Speaks

Bailey the dog

Wow! Can you believe it? It’s March already and we’ve had a whirlwind of activities take place the last couple months at Tara Woods.

We rang in 2018 with our Orientation, Cancer Run (unfortunately, I was unable to participate because I was bitten by fire ants during my routine walk), special stage shows, a Block Party, Happy Hour, Club Parties, and the Yard Sale. Even though we may be the warm Sunshine State, we experienced a lot of frigid weather during the first week of January, which brings this segment of Bailey Speaks—"Cold Weather: How Cold is Too Cold for My Fellow Four-Footed Friends?”

Dogs and cats can develop hypothermia, a condition that occurs when the dog or cat’s body temperature continues to fall and causes the muscles to stiffen, breathing and heart rate to slow, and possibly death. Wind chill can also affect your furry companion. If your pet has short hair, they will feel the cold quicker than others.

Providing a coat for your pet is a great way to keep them warm, though even with a coat, we tend to sweat, so don’t leave it on for long periods of time. A coat must have a high collar (ex., turtleneck) and cover from the base of the tail to the belly. Having a coat helps regulate the temperature of the dog’s body. It also makes the dog feel more comfortable when wearing one.

Bring a towel during routine walks. Snowbirds have a tendency to bring salt and other chemicals on their car tires and deposit them here. Water spots may have that salt and/or chemicals in it. They could also have antifreeze from the cars coming down from the cold areas as well. Check your four-footed friends’ paw pads for cracks and redness and don’t forget to check between the toes.

You may discover a bad doggy odor after removing a coat. Bathe animals as little as possible because frequent bathing may remove essential oils and increase the chance of developing flaky skin. Use petroleum jelly on the paw pads to protect them from cracking. Give your animals plenty of water to keep them well-hydrated and to help their skin from drying out.

Don’t leave animals in a locked car in the cold weather. It can act like a refrigerator holding in the cold and can cause them to freeze to death.

Of course, our Tara Woods canine companions are strictly indoor pets. They go out on their routine walks and to enjoy our doggy park, but stay inside the remainder of the time. Be aware of cold symptoms like unusual whining, barking, and shivering.

Have a warm place for a good night’s sleep. Please place the sleeping spot away from cold drafts or cold floors by supplying a warm blanket or a good bed.

These are just a few common-sense tips to keep your four-footed friends safe and warm during those Florida cold spells.

Until next month, Happy Tails!

-Bailey

Food

Food icon

A Single Serving

Whether you and your partner have different diets, or you find yourself needing smaller portions, cooking for one can pose a challenge. However, there’s something incredibly satisfying about cooking what you want, how you want it. Fear not! This article on solo cooking tips can help make cooking for one easier than ever.

Braving the Cold for a Cause

Cancer run

Our third annual Braving the Cold for the Cause was a huge success. Upwards of $4,000 were raised in support of cancer awareness, education, and patient financial assistance in Southwest Florida. Hear from Marie Springsteen, President of 4 Words Foundation, by clicking here.

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Braving the Cold for a Cause

Our third annual Braving the Cold for the Cause was a huge success. Upwards of $4,000 were raised in support of cancer awareness, education, and patient financial assistance in Southwest Florida. Hear from Marie Springsteen, President of 4 Words Foundation, by clicking here.

St. Patrick's Day Party

St. Patrick

Come to our St. Patrick’s Day Party on Saturday, March 17, hosted by George and Janet Daly, and other friends. There will be food, drinks, and plenty of entertainment. Tickets are on sale at our monthly Coffee Hour from 7:45-8:45 a.m. Don’t miss out on the festivities!

Trash and Treasure

Trash bag

This year’s Trash and Treasure is Saturday, March 3. We would like to remind everyone that donations to Trash and Treasure make it possible for the fashion show to be a free event. Read on for more information on volunteering.

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Trash and Treasure

Trash bag

This year’s Trash and Treasure is Saturday, March 3. We would like to remind everyone that donations to the Trash and Treasure make it possible for the fashion show to be a free event.

If you have items that are clean and useable that you’ve been planning to give away, please consider donating them to this great cause. Hold on to your items until Friday, March 2. To all our wonderful volunteers, please put this date on your calendar.

At 9 a.m., we will need to begin moving tables and setting up for the sale. We also need help the following day at 1 p.m. to put tables back in place. Thank you so much for your donations and assistance!

-Rachelle DellaRocca

Your Health

Health icon

Creating a Healthy Nighttime Routine

While bedtime routines are often associated with children, an adult’s evening routine is equally as important for creating a calm, sleep-inducing environment. Taking 30-60 minutes to end your day and ease your mind is critical for good sleep hygiene. Here are some suggestions for developing your own bedtime routine, providing tips for falling asleep and recommendations of habits to avoid.

Gardening Essentials

Gardener

Check out our helpful tips on what to do and what to plant for your gardens and lawns this month. Thanks for doing your part to maintain our beautiful landscaping!

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Gardening Essentials

Gardener

Check out our helpful tips on what to do and what to plant for your gardens and lawns this month. Thanks for doing your part to maintain our beautiful landscaping!

What to Do

  • Lawns: Fertilize your lawns in March. Choose a fertilizer (not a weed & feed) with no or very little phosphorus, unless a soil test indicates the need for it. A fertilizer with controlled-release nitrogen will give longer lasting results. The best grasses for Florida lawns include Bahia grass, Bermuda grass, Centipede grass, St. Augustine grass, and Zoysia grass.
  • Prune Roses: Roses should be pruned this month to reduce and improve the overall form. After pruning, fertilize and apply a fresh layer of mulch. Blooming should begin eight to nine weeks after pruning.
  • Fertilize Shrubs and Palms: Spread fertilizer evenly over the soil surface and then water it. Follow it with a fresh layer of mulch to conserve moisture and reduce weeds. Hold off pruning cold-damaged branches until new growth starts.
  • Lawn Weeds: Apply a pre-emergent weed killer (not a weed and feed) to lawns this month to prevent germination of warm-season weed seeds. Apply once temperatures rise to 65°F for four-to-five days. Timing is important for good control.
  • Spray: When avocados and mangos have lost two-thirds of their blossoms, spray copper fungicide to control anthracnose.
  • Fruits: If not previously done in January, fertilize fruit trees, including citrus, this month.

What to Plant

  • Bedding Plants: Good performers in South Florida’s mild winter include impatiens, verbena, dianthus, strawflower, and lobelia.
  • Bulbs: Many bulbs can be planted now. Divide large crowded clumps and provide adequate water to establish bulbs. Some bulbs to try are Amazon lily, crinum, and agapanthus.
  • Ground Covers: Consider replacing areas of grass with drought-tolerant, low-maintenance ground covers.
  • Vegetables: Begin planting warm season crops this month. Sweet potato, cantaloupe, eggplant, and squash are good choices because they can be started while temperatures are cool.

Complete information can be found here!

Tara Woods Computer Club

Computer

The Tara Woods Computer Club provides free computer lessons for owners, renters, and guests at Tara Woods. These lessons are held at 10:30 a.m. every Thursday in the Card Room at the Clubhouse. They are open to everyone and there is no membership fee. Read on for more information.

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Tara Woods Computer Club

Computer

The Tara Woods Computer Club provides free computer lessons for owners, renters, and guests at Tara Woods. These lessons are held at 10:30 a.m. every Thursday in the Card Room at the Clubhouse. They are open to everyone and there is no membership fee.

The first and third Thursdays of each month are devoted to computer basics. This is a complete course on how to use your computer. The second and fourth Thursdays are reserved for general subjects and cover a single specific topic of interest. If there is a fifth Thursday in a month, it is an open question-and-answer session where you can ask almost anything you want.

It's never too late to join the group, even if you're a total novice. This is a great time to learn the basics. General topics cover all sorts of subjects, programs, and hardware. These include an ongoing series on working with photos and multimedia tablets and e-book readers. Ample time is spent on each topic, and the next topic to be covered is always posted on the bulletin board in the Clubhouse. Feel free to attend classes that appeal to you.

Bring something to take notes and your laptop computer if you want to follow along. Any question you want to ask will be answered. Private lessons are also available and the teacher can set up or repair computers in your home.

Dave St. Laurent, “The Computer Tutor,” has been designing, programming, repairing, teaching, and working with computers since 1968, and can help you with all of your computer needs. Please call with any questions or comments at 652-0488. We look forward to seeing you.

New Image Chorus

Chrous

The New Image Chorus is singing out to you! Join us as we practice for our Annual Concert, which will be held on March 24. We believe that we all sound better together, and we are always looking for new voices to join up with us.

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New Image Chorus

Chrous

The New Image Chorus is singing out to you! Join us as we practice for our Annual Concert, which will be held on March 24. We believe that we all sound better together, and we are always looking for new voices to join up with us.

Practices are held every Monday at 12:30 p.m. in the Clubhouse. The big concert is Saturday, March 24. Tickets will be on sale after coffee on Saturday mornings and at Bingo on Tuesday evenings. Join the laughter, smiles, and great friendships provided with the New Image Chorus. Please call (239) 308-3242 if you have any questions.

-Shelia Piganelli

Home & Garden

Fence icon

How Does Your Garden Grow?

No, we’re not talking about Mary’s flower garden. Quite contrary, have you considered growing vegetables? Growing your own veggies might be easier than you think. Timing is important, and this article will determine easy-to-grow plants and when to harvest them. Most varieties can be potted, or strategically placed around your landscaping for easy maintenance.

Resident Reward Program

Money bag

Residents can earn up to $1,000 for each referred client who closes on a new home. Just be sure they list you as the reference when they come to tour and start their paperwork. For more information, please feel free to reach out to our sales team at 239-731-1011.

Sales Update
 

House

The sales department would like to thank all of the wonderful community members who attended the Resident Grand Opening in January! We are thankful for your input and participation in this event. Read more if you’re interested in our Trade-In, Trade-Up Program.

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Sales Update

House

The sales department would like to thank all of the wonderful community members who attended the Resident Grand Opening in January! We are thankful for your input and participation in this event. It was a great opportunity to learn from you. We hope you enjoyed viewing the new models, and that you will bring over family and friends to see the homes in hopes they become Tara Woods residents as well.

As you might have noticed, progress is moving forward with the construction of the new homes, and we are excited to offer the very best manufactured homes for future and current residents. If you are interested in upgrading to one of these new homes, we have a program exclusively for our beloved residents. Please stop by the office and ask about our Trade-In Trade-Up Program, or call 239-731-1011.

Never Stop Learning

brain

Gaining more knowledge gives you the opportunity to expand your mind and become a well-rounded individual. Make it a goal to keep your mind sharp and learn something new this year. Here are a few ideas.

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Never Stop Learning

brain

A wise Chinese Proverb confirms, “Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.” Gaining more knowledge gives you the opportunity to expand your mind and become a well-rounded individual.

It’s easier thank you think to spend your spare time learning something new. Make it a goal to keep your mind sharp and learn something new this year. Here are a few ideas:

  • Photography - Pictures are important for keeping memories for years to come. Photography is an exciting activity with the potential to help a person grow artistically and expand their imagination. Take a class to understand camera functions and tips for different settings. Hone your craft and become an amateur photographer in no time.
  • Language - You never know when speaking a second language will come in handy. Expanding your linguistic knowledge has multiple benefits, from improving brain function to sharpening problem-solving skills. Plus, you can enjoy the glory of bragging in your second language to new friends or during travels.
  • Baking - Knowing how to bake decadent goods takes practice, but the benefits pay off. Practice your baking skills by following online recipes and watching videos. As a bonus to fine-tuning this craft, you will always have something good to eat and delicious treats to share with others.
  • Yoga - Yoga is the mixture of exercise, breathing control, and meditation that includes both physical and mental health benefits. This popular form of exercise can be done by individuals of any age or physical ability. Take up beginner level classes or follow video-based Yoga at home. Either way, your mind and your body will thank you.

Want to discover more hobbies you can learn or skills you can develop? Check out these links:

• Learn Something New

• 45 Things Everyone Should Learn

Travel

Travel icon

Springtime Travels: Top 10 Best Vacations

Don’t wait until summer to travel. Avoid crowds, enjoy pleasant temperatures, and take advantage of affordable lodging and airfare rates by exploring the world’s top destinations in the spring. U.S. News assembled a list of the top escapes for this season. Explore these suggestions and tell your fellow residents on our Facebook page which ones you recommend.

HTA Spotlight: Ageless Home

HTA spotlight

A growing trend amongst homeowners is renovating their houses to make them “ageless.” But this is an issue our residents don’t have to worry about. Read on to learn more.

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HTA Spotlight: Ageless Home

HTA spotlight

A growing trend amongst homeowners is renovating their houses to make them “ageless.” Realizing the narrow hallways and small doorways of the past won’t work if they want to spend retirement years in the same house, many people are spending thousands of dollars to fix their inflexible homes. But this is an issue our residents don’t have to worry about.

From early retirement to the golden years, Hometown America homes are ageless as a standard. No need for costly renovations!

Our homes are built with you in mind. With wider door frames and hallways, it’s easy to glide through the house with ease. Well-planned bathrooms are created with walk-in showers for easy access, and the open-concept floor plans provide a spacious layout to prevent clutter. These homes are perfect for those who need the time and space to cook, clean, and live day-to-day comfortably in their home.

Whether you’re thinking of making the move to an HTA community or you’re a 10-year resident, you’re sure to love the custom, ageless homes built just for you.

If you’re not already a resident, click here to see available homes and get ready to live worry free.

Spring Time Cleaning

Spring time cleaning

Spring is here with warmer weather, lovely showers, and blooming flowers. This also means it’s time for spring cleaning! Here are some easy to follow tips and tricks to jump-start your seasonal cleanse.

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Spring Time Cleaning

Spring time cleaning

Spring is here with warmer weather, lovely showers, and blooming flowers. This also means it’s time for spring cleaning! Your routine probably hasn’t changed much over the years. While there is something to say about sticking to your methods, trying something new can be beneficial. Test out these tips and tricks to make your home as clean as can be for spring:

1. Make a list. When it comes to spring cleaning, you might feel overwhelmed by everything you have to do. Make a list of tasks to prioritize what needs to be done first and reduce unnecessary stress. It will also help you plan what can be done in a day versus over a few days.

2. Clean the little things. You probably don’t think about cleaning things like your door handles, walls, or cabinets very often. It is important to clean these small things regularly in order to get rid of germs and bacteria. Also try cleaning your ceiling fan. You’ll be amazed how fresh the air is after, and how dusty it was before!

3. Be smart with windows and blinds. Don’t get lost in the fuss of it. First, clean your windows with coffee filters or newspapers to reduce streaks. Second, clean the blinds by wrapping two cloths around a pair of tongs to get both sides of the blinds at once.

4. Organize your closets and cabinets. Give your closets a fresh look. Pull everything out and start organizing from scratch. Even though it may feel like everything is in the right place, this process will make it easier to rethink what’s in your closet and find items to start your donation pile.

For other useful tips check out these articles:

• Best Cleaning Tips from Good Housekeeping

• Spring Cleaning Tips for Older Adults

• 30 Days of Spring Cleaning

Florida Voted Best State to Retire

Craft Show

AARP recently published a report that says the Sunshine State is the best place to retire. In a recent study by WalletHub, Florida ranked the highest overall, tops in affordability, and high in quality of life. You already know how good Florida living is, but your friends might not. It’s time to show them the proof! To read the full rankings, click here.

Entertainment & Leisure

Arts

New to Netflix?

Several streaming services allow you to watch movies and television shows on demand. As with all technology, it can be confusing to navigate the site, set it up on your various devices, or decide the right plan for your needs. If you haven’t started an account yet, this site helps to answer all the questions you could have about Netflix. If you’ve recently set one up, this beginner’s guide will walk you through every step. Happy streaming!

Come Socialize
 

social

Join us on social media, through Facebook or Twitter, to stay updated, see pictures from the latest community event, and connect with neighbors. Our community page is also a great place to learn about sales specials and enter fun contests. Follow us today!

SafeHaven Insurance

Safe

Hometown America is proud to promote SafeHaven National Insurance Agency, specializing in coverage for manufactured homeowners and renters. Many companies are difficult to work with or do not write policies that provide adequate protection for prefabricated homes. Make sure you are dealing with an insurance company that offers competitively priced policies and the protections important to you. Visit SafeHaven online or call 1-800-536-8999 for a quote.

E-Z Pay
 

E-Z Pay

Take the hassle out of making rent payments with Hometown America’s E-Z Pay. With E-Z Pay, your lot rent will be automatically deducted from your bank account on the third of each month. New sign-ups earn a $10 credit.