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A 55+ Community in North Fort Myers, Florida

November - December 2017

Edition No. 11

Welcome!

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Learn about community happenings, see upcoming events, and read articles of interest on a wide range of topics. If you’re new to our publication, click here to subscribe now. If you are missing email notifications from us, please check your spam folder.

Manager's Corner
 

Darlene

The past few months have been different at Tara Woods. Prior to the hurricane preparations, we had a great Labor Day Party with lots of food, games, and activities enjoyed by all including a fun end of summer bash.

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Manager's Corner

Darlene

The past few months have been different at Tara Woods. Prior to the hurricane preparations, we had a great Labor Day Party with lots of food, games, and activities enjoyed by all including a fun end of summer bash.

Irma was very kind to our residents, mainly aiming for our trees and lamp posts. Monday morning we had crews in for tree trimming, collecting debris, and making sure our residents were safe. Below are photos of our staff going to pick up food from the National Guard and residents who were so kind to help the staff deliver food for two days until our electric service was restored.

We were able to have an end of summer bash September 23 with a live DJ. It was a wonderful time for everyone to relax and have fun. Now football season, fall events, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the return of our northern residents are anticipated by all.

- Darlene

Upcoming Events
 

Calendar

Check out the upcoming events happening at Tara Woods.

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Upcoming Events

Calendar

Friday, November 3
Fashion Show
Clubhouse, 11 a.m.

Saturday, November 4
Craft Fair
Clubhouse, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Friday, November 17
Canadian Club
Veranda, 5 p.m.

Saturday, November 18
Community Opportunity Fair
Clubhouse, 1 – 3 p.m.

Friday, November 24
Happy Hour Club
Clubhouse, 5 p.m.

Saturday, December 13
Golf Cart Parade
Begins in front of the Clubhouse, 5 p.m.

Saturday, December 13
Christmas Caroling
Clubhouse, 7 p.m.

Sunday, December 31
New Year’s Eve Party
Clubhouse, 7 p.m.

Check with your Tara Woods organizations for their holiday parties. Each club is throwing individual holiday events.

Food

Food icon

Thanksgiving Made Simple

Thanksgiving means good food and even better company. Cut your cooking time in half with these savory meals that take less than an hour to prepare. You’ll spend less time in the kitchen and more time with loved ones.

Sales Update
 

Sales udpate

There is tons of action happening with the final phase. We have scheduled several new home arrivals by the end of the year, and the final phase will really start to take shape in the next few months. With season coming up, home sites are being reserved quickly. Please contact Nick Cornwell at 239-785-0358 to reserve a home site today!

Hurricane Update
 

Hurricane sign

Hometown America thanks everyone who helped during the recent hurricane. Irma was one of the most massive hurricanes to come across the state. The “we’re in this together” spirit of Tara Woods showed the most amazing community effort. A heartfelt thanks to everyone for their patience, support, and assistance.

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Hurricane Update

Hurricane sign

Hometown America thanks everyone who helped during the recent hurricane. Irma was one of the most massive hurricanes to come across the state. We appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding when we had to close the Clubhouse for the storm. Although it is a shelter, it is not approved to withstand winds over a Category 3 hurricane. We would never want to jeopardize the safety of our residents, and we are grateful the outcomes were positive overall.

Hurricane Irma is long gone, but it left behind tons of debris. The day after Irma, Hometown America sent crews in to start cleaning up anything and everything they could find, from common areas to individual properties. Their top priority was helping to address the items that would become a hindrance for residents.

The “we’re in this together” spirit of Tara Woods showed the most amazing community effort. The Tara Woods staff said “let’s get busy” and they did, working in an office with no power for computers or phones (A/C only). We made it work with pad, pen, and cell phones, reaching out to people with damage, reporting power outages, conducting well-checks on family, and organizing help to get water and food boxes out to those with no power.

We had a couple of gate attendants who stayed in town to staff the guardhouse in 90-degree heat. Residents came in asking what they could do and then started cleaning up their streets, clearing gutters, and helping with picking up food and water from the National Guard. The National Guardsmen were great as well. They let us pick up enough food and water two days in a row for those that could not get there. The south side of the property had power outage, and with the help of the community residents, we delivered food boxes and water to over 200 homes on Thursday and Friday.

What now?

Please be patient as we still have repairs that need to be scheduled with contractors. Since this storm was so massive, causing damages statewide, contractors are backed up on scheduling. As it is the residents’ responsibility to clean up their yards, Hometown America wanted to take the stress away and did the major cleanup for you in the days immediately after the storm. We are very fortunate that most all activities and amenities are up and running for your enjoyment.

Thank you!

We truly appreciate all of our residents coming together and helping each other out. Thank you to all those that jumped in and starting getting their homes and yards repaired and cleaned up so quickly. With your help, our community is as beautiful as ever. Special thanks to: Bill Black, Frank Millett, Ed Sparany, Bob and Casey Glandorf, Joe and Diane Bent.

We had several vendors that made sure that we were on the top of the list to start helping. This made our job so much easier to have dependable help at the end of a phone line. We also want to thank our Fairways staff who worked long hours under difficult circumstances. Big thanks to: Doug, Linda, Ginny, Jerry, Mark, Gordon, Nick, Mary, Karl, Marcella, Dan, Allen, Angiline, Eulalia, Joshua Tree, AAction, Julian Molian, Quality Cut, Kyle Landscaping, White Aluminum, Tim Couch, AAAction Electric, Tropical Photography, and the Florida National Guard.

Thank you does not even begin to say how much each and every one of you are appreciated.

- Darlene Bradley and Gena Paugh

Happy Hour Club
 

Martini glass

The Happy Hour Club is happier than ever! We meet on Fridays and welcome all residents of Tara Woods for a time of friendship, good food, and drinks. Read more for details on how to join us for upcoming dates- November 24 and December 29.

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Happy Hour Club

Martini glass

The Happy Hour Club is happier than ever! We meet on Fridays and welcome all residents of Tara Woods for a time of friendship, good food, and drinks. We have a special drink of the month and enjoy a pot luck dinner after a brief meeting and cocktail time. We meet at the Clubhouse at 5 p.m. either on the Veranda or inside, depending on the weather.

A sign-up sheet to join us is in the Clubhouse. Bring your own potluck meal, an appetizer, a drink of your choice, your own place setting, and a $2 donation. If you have questions, please call Mary Kivel at 207 505-5576. Happy Hour dates for the remainder of 2017 are November 24 and December 29. Mark your calendars!

Your Health

Health icon

Stretch the Pain Away

Back pain is the second most common reason for doctor office visits. If you suffer from this, you know it can be difficult to enjoy everyday activities. Check out these gentle stretches to ease the discomfort so you can continue living pain free.

Toy Drive
 

Toy drive

Bikeman Jack Boylan and Emergency Responder Chuck Poveromo will be starting a “toy drive” in early November in our Clubhouse, collecting unwrapped clothing and toys. The North Fort Myers Fire Department will distribute the toys to the needy children in our area. For more information, please contact Jack Boylan (239-567-0119) or Chuck Poveromo (815-979-3467).

Retirement Plan
 

Retirement plan

When you create your financial and investment strategies for retirement, what will you need to know? Click to read more about what you should consider.

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Retirement Plan

Retirement plan

When you create your financial and investment strategies for retirement, what will you need to know? In other words, what factors should you consider, and how will these factors affect your investment-related decisions, before and during your retirement? Consider the following:

Age at retirement – Not surprisingly, your retirement date likely will be heavily influenced by your financial situation – so, if you have to keep working, that’s what you’ll do. But if you have a choice in the matter, your decision could have a big impact on your investment strategy. For example, if you want to retire early, you may need to save and invest more aggressively than you would if you plan to work well past typical retirement age. Also, your retirement date may well affect when you start accepting Social Security payments; if you retire early, you might have to start taking your benefits at age 62, even though your monthly checks will be considerably smaller than if you waited until your “full” retirement age, which is likely to be 66 or 67.

Retirement lifestyle – Some people want to spend their retirement years traveling from Athens to Zanzibar, while others simply want to stay close to home and family, pursuing quiet, inexpensive hobbies. Clearly, the lifestyle you choose will affect how much you need to accumulate before you retire and how much you will need to withdraw from your various investment accounts once you do.

Second career – Some people retire from one career only to begin another. If you think you’d like to have a “second act” in your working life, you might need some additional training, or you might just put your existing expertise to work as a consultant. If you do launch a new career, it could clearly affect your financial picture. For one thing, if you add a new source of earned income, you might be able to withdraw less from your retirement accounts each year. (Keep in mind, though, that once you reach 70 ½, you will have to take at least some withdrawals from your traditional IRA and your 401(k) or other employer-sponsored retirement plan.) On the other hand, if you keep earning income, you can continue putting money into a traditional IRA (until you’re 70 ½) or a Roth IRA (indefinitely) and possibly contribute to a retirement plan for the self-employed, such as a SEP-IRA or an “owner- only” 401(k).

Philanthropy – During your working years, you may have consistently donated money to charitable organizations. And once you retire, you may want to do even more. For one thing, of course, you can volunteer more of your time. But you also might want to set up some more permanent method of financial support. Consequently, you might want to work with your legal advisor and financial professional to incorporate elements of your investment portfolio into your estate plans to provide more support for charitable groups.

As you can see, your retirement goals can affect your investment strategy – and vice versa. So, think carefully about what you want to accomplish, plan ahead and get the help you need. It takes time and effort to achieve a successful retirement, but it’s worth it.

- Adam Hromiak at Edward Jones & Co.

Clubhouse Cancer Christmas Tree

Christmas tree

It’s that time of year again, and we will be selling ornaments for our Cancer Christmas Tree. It’s a small way to remember someone who is suffering, a survivor, or someone in your life who has passed from this disease. Click to read more details.

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Clubhouse Cancer Christmas Tree

Christmas tree

It’s that time of year again and we will be selling ornaments for our Cancer Christmas Tree. The price is the same as previous years - $3 per ornament. This is the time you may want to remember someone who is suffering, a survivor, or someone in your life who has passed from this disease. All donations collected will benefit the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Fund.

Ornaments will go on sale at BINGO beginning November 1, and at Saturday Morning Coffee. For questions please call Judy at 239-731-1797 or Jane at 239-731-0103.

Home & Garden

Fence icon

Front Porch Flair

Make your front porch pop with fall containers filled with beautiful blooms and foliage. Southern Living provides the best ideas and tips for how to bring a beautiful fall planter to life. Whichever you choose, your home will be decorated perfectly for the season.

Tennis Season is Here

Tennis ball

Our first Round Robin and our first Tennis Association Meeting of the season will begin on Sunday, November 26. Let’s start out the tennis season with a good turnout for both events!

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Tennis Season is Here

Tennis ball

Our first Round Robin and our first Tennis Association Meeting of the season will be on Sunday, November 26. Let’s start out the tennis season with a good turnout for both events!

Janice and George Johnston will host us for dinner and Fred Puhlfuerst volunteered to handle the courtside refreshments. The remaining Round Robins are January 28, February 25, and March 25. We need volunteers to host the dinners and we also need people to handle the courtside snacks on these dates. If you haven’t volunteered in a while, consider helping out. Having someone help you with the dinner or the refreshments will make the job easier.

Time to Trade Up!
 

Key in hand

Do you love Tara Woods, but long for a newer home? Do you want to live in a new construction house, with all the bells and whistles? Now’s your chance! Take advantage of our Trade Up Program and move into one of the brand-new homes in the Tara Woods expansion.

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Time to Trade Up!

Key in hand

Do you love Tara Woods, but long for a newer home? Do you want to live in a new construction house, with all the bells and whistles? Now’s your chance!

Our Trade Up Program, exclusively for current Hometown America residents, offers an excellent opportunity to secure a new home in the community you already love.

This Trade Up Program is designed to make the transition from your current home into your new home effortless and quick, with Hometown America purchasing your current home immediately. This avoids wait times in selling your current home, as well as saves you money on commissions.

You can start building your dream home without further delay. Within the final phase at Tara Woods, lot selection is at a premium due to overwhelming demand. Call our New Home Specialist, Nick Cornwell, at 239-785-0358 for details today!

Canadian Club
 

Candian flag

The first Canadian Club meeting will be on November 17 at 5 p.m. It will take place on the Veranda with barbecue Hawaiian Burgers and a 50/50 raffle draw. Please bring your own tableware, drinks, and a side dish or dessert to share. Kindly RSVP to your hosts, Carl and Kathy Marquis, at (239) 567-2955 no later than the Wednesday before.

Travel

Travel icon

Holiday Journeys

Don’t let the hustle and bustle of the season stress you out. Make your travel plans effortless using these holiday travel tips. Being mindful and strategic while you travel will ease the stress and make the season more fun!

Community Opportunity Fair

Opportunity Fair

The Second Community Opportunity Fair will be held November 18 from 1-3 p.m. in the Clubhouse. This is an event where everyone will be able to check out the various community groups and clubs at Tara Woods. If you want get more involved in our community, this is the event for you. Call Janet Daly at 239-567-2285 for more information.

Good Night, Sleep Tight

Clock

It goes without saying that a good night’s sleep is a valued part of life. With every day hustle and bustle, many factors often interfere with getting enough rest. Read more for tips on the lifestyle choices you can make to get better sleep.

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Good Night, Sleep Tight

Clock

It goes without saying that a good night’s sleep is a valued part of life. With every day hustle and bustle, many factors often interfere with getting enough rest. Read the tips below on the lifestyle choices you can make to get better sleep.

1. Make a sleep schedule - Go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time each morning, even on weekends. The consistency in your sleep cycle will ensure that your body is properly rested and that you receive the best sleep each night.

2. Limit naps - Long naps during the day can severely interfere with a good night’s rest. In order to maximize your sleep, limit naps to 30 minutes and take them earlier in the day instead of later.

3. Include physical activity - Exercise during the day can have a huge impact on the sleep you get at night. Make exercise a regular part of your daily routine, and you’ll see great improvements in your sleep.

4. Create a comfortable sleep environment - For better sleep, make sure your mattress and pillows are comfortable and supportive. Also, remove any noise or distractions that could hinder a good night’s rest.

For other useful tips on sleeping better, check out these links:

Sleep tips: 6 steps to better sleep

Healthy Sleep Tips

Enjoy a Stress-Free Holiday

Happy couple

The holidays are a great time to spend with friends and family. Don’t let the potential stress of the season get in the way of everything you should enjoy. If you’re looking to do less instead of more this Christmas, read more for some tips.

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Enjoy a Stress-Free Holiday

Happy couple

The holidays are a great time to spend with friends and family, and should be enjoyed instead of dreaded. With presents, food, decorations, and more piling up it can be overwhelming. Don’t let the potential stress of the season get in the way of everything you should enjoy. If you’re looking to do less instead of more this Christmas, start with these tips:

1. Have a gift-wrapping strategy - Don’t wait until the last minute to wrap gifts. Take care of gift wrapping as soon as you purchase, and use a sticky note as a reminder of the contents.

2. Make a budget and a gift list - Before you step into a store make sure you have a set holiday budget and gift list for each person you’re shopping for. This will eliminate financial stress and ensure everyone you love receives a gift.

3. Use simple décor - Small and simple decorations are just as festive as large and flashy ones. A few decorations around the house is plenty to suffice for holiday cheer, and are extremely easy to put up and take down.

4. Enjoy store bought treats - Instead of slaving away in the kitchen, opt for store bought baked goods. They are still delicious and will be much easier to prepare.

5. Pick paper plates - Fine china may be pretty, but it can be a huge headache to wash and put away. Using disposable plates and plastic utensils are a great substitution, and can be tossed when the meal is over.

Want more tips and tricks for a stress-free season? Click below:

Christmas Calm: Ten Tips for a Stress-Free Holiday Season

Tips for a Stress-Free Holiday Season

Entertainment & Leisure

Arts

Adventures in Words

There’s no greater pleasure than delving into a good book and not putting it down until you’ve read every page. The adventure you take while reading can truly make the world fade away. Click here to see the most popular books of 2017 so far, and add some to your reading list.

Special Feature: Online Safety

Security lock

As technology changes and improves, so do the tactics and strategies of scammers and thieves. While this can be frightening, there are ways to prevent and stop it. Here are a few tips from retired police officer, Donna Brown, on how to keep yourself safe online.

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Special Feature: Online Safety

Security lock

Technology plays a huge part in our everyday life. We use it to make a phone call, share a picture with our friends on Facebook, or send a quick email. Regardless, the use of technology is constantly changing and improving for the better. However, as technology changes and improves, so do the tactics and strategies of scammers and thieves. While this can be frightening, there are ways to prevent and stop it. Here are a few tips on how to keep yourself safe online.

Credit Theft:

Check your credit at least once a year. While this may not prevent theft, it can catch it earlier on. By regularly checking your credit, which is free, you can catch someone trying to use your name for unauthorized mortgages, car loans, and credit cards.

Scams:

Lottery scams and the Internal Revenue Services (IRS) scams are two of the most prominent and cyclical scams. Scam victims will receive a call or email, stating they have won the lottery and must pay a small fee to collect it. Legitimate lotteries do not request payments.

The Internal Revenue Services (IRS) scam victims will receive a call or email stating there is a warrant for their arrest due to owing back taxes and are requesting a payment through gift cards. The IRS never requests payment gift cards.

Social Media:

Don’t post photos when going out of town. Crooks prowl social media looking for vacant homes. If you do post, have a friend check on your home daily and collect your mail and newspaper. Having light timers, inside and outside, can help as well.

Computers:

Secure your computer from viruses. There are many reputable anti-malware and anti-virus software companies available that offer great products and protection at very reasonable prices.

Check Writing:

Always think twice when writing a check to a person or business you’re not familiar with. Checks provide your name and address, which is very useful information for those with nefarious intentions. Use your debit or credit card instead of writing a check if you can. If using a debit or credit card, try to use them at establishments with updated security chip readers.

These are just a few ways for you to stay one step ahead and protect yourself. Learn the balance between enjoying technology and being precautious.


About Donna Brown

Donna Brown

Donna Brown is a former Tallahassee Police Department (TPD) homicide sergeant with more than 26 years of experience and author of Behind and Beyond the Badge. Brown began her career at TPD during a time when there were only five women in a department of 150 plus officers. Throughout her career, she worked as a patrol officer, a field training officer, a member of several different investigative units and as a homicide detective-sergeant, allowing her to work with a large variety of the first-responder community. After retiring, Brown wanted to write a book capturing and exploring career-defining moments of a first- responder. She felt her book was vital considering the many officer-involved shootings bringing negative spotlight on what she felt was not representative of public servants.

Want to hear from Donna Brown? Check out Behind and Beyond the Badge on Facebook for a list of upcoming tour stops!

Behind and Beyond the Badge book

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 hear 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 SaveHaven 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.