February 7, 2020
Come to our Open House
Sunday, February 16
Only a few homes left. Join us now!
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Almost There!

Our projected move-in is late April/early May. Sometimes it feels a long way off, and sometimes it feels like tomorrow. The truth is the time is flying by, and every time we visit there are major changes, to our delight. We are inviting you to come and see our new homes on Sunday, February 16, from 2:30 - 4:30 p.m., rain or shine (we can be inside if needed). See the events section below for details.

Looking along the walkway towards building three

Dona shows her friend Holly around the site.

Barbara and Lou are delighted with what they see.

A recent aerial view of the site

During a recent visit, we were able to step inside all of the homes for the first time. Even though we had previously been in units with the same design, it was a thrill to stand in OUR homes.

Porch railings make a big difference. Gutters and downspouts, too.

Green! We have something other than dirt. The central space is getting sod. That's the common house on the right, with the cupola. It needs a weathervane, don't you think.

Today I'm mostly sharing photos with you. Still, work to be done, but can't you imagine yourself in one of these inviting cottages with this great group of neighbors?

A view from the Common House terrace

We were promised light and airy interiors. BTW, the skylights were covered when these photos were taken. Notice the hardwood floors, the spacious roll-in shower, and the extra storage in some of the closets behind where you hang your clothes. We are still waiting for the cabinetry. We're told it's on the boat :-).

Jane, Allan, Eleanor, and Patricia working out a plan for using our excess rock.

We have some attractive boulders and many of us are opting to have a few in our yards.

Our architect, Chuck Durrett, visited and answered our questions. Of course, every get-together ends with a meal at one of Durham's many excellent restaurants.

We are very busy getting ready for the move, but we manage to fit our other interests into our lives. We look forward to sharing them with each other.

Come on in, the water's fine. Margaret loves to swim. We won't have a pool at Village Hearth, but there are very nice ones, both inside and out, nearby.

Barbara attended the Women's March in Washington DC. Mary attended the local version in Raleigh, the nearby state capitol. Many of us are politically active.

Finally, imagine sitting on the terrace enjoying a morning coffee or an evening drink with friends while watching the often spectacular North Carolina skies.
Only a few homes available. We've done all the work. Come share the rewards. Call Margaret at 
561-714-8009 or email Pat at for information.  

Cohousing? Moi?

I am happiest alone, reading, writing, meditating, or out walking as fast as I can with my headphones firmly clamped in place while this or that opera plays in my ears as loud as it is safe to do. So, uh, why on earth did I sign on for a life in a cohousing community?
Especially because cohousing communities typically attract more women than men, and for a gay man, that is not exactly a draw. Hey, don’t get me wrong. I love women. I was married to one. And many of my best friends have been and are women.


But women, well, women love to sit around and talk. When I was a kid and we went to my aunt’s house for dinner, my mother and my aunt talked incessantly. When it was time to go home, it was a ten-minute goodbye, as they stood at the door talking some more. When we got home, one of them called the other on the phone and they talked even more.
After I had escaped from Ohio, my mother came to New York to visit a couple of times. “Let’s just sit and talk,” she said, in response to most of my pleas to go somewhere. And she loved New York! But she loved sitting and talking more.
Now, decades later, on the phone with a dear female friend in California whom I met in New York ages ago and with whom I speak almost every day, it’s the old ten-minute goodbye.

And when we met in New York several years ago after I had moved down here and she had retired to Santa Cruz, we did go out for dinner one day and for lunch another day and to a fabulous concert at Carnegie Hall one evening. But more often than not, her plan was, “Let’s just sit and talk.”
I am reminded of the (heterosexual) couples I counsel prior to marrying them. On their evenings apart, he goes to a game with the guys; she goes out for drinks with the girls. Boys don’t cry. Men are strong and silent. Independent. Self-reliant, externally focused. Women are the needy, “weaker” sex. Their focus is internal.
Yet I well remember at the height of the AIDS crisis in New York who stepped up and took upon themselves the business of caring for those who were ill: the women. Certainly we men did also—I walked dogs for men with AIDS who could no longer walk—but it was the women who did an outsized share of the work of care-giving. And there was nothing weak about any of it.

Christopher and friend. Everyone is welcome at Village Hearth.

Not that I expect the women to be the only nurturers at Village Hearth. As a priest, a hospital chaplain, a counselor, and, I hope, a good friend, I have done my share of caring for people.
It boils down to this. VHC member Dona McNeill, in a recent television interview about us, commented that while our front doors are a mere forty feet apart, cohousing is not about being in each other’s faces. It’s about having each other’s backs. Who doesn’t want that?
Nevertheless, I will continue to spend most of my time alone. That is just who I am. But sometimes I remember Barbra Streisand singing to my frightened, depressed, closeted 16-year old self, “People, people who need people, are the luckiest people in the world,” and I understand, now, that Barbra was wrong. Everyone needs people, including men, whether we admit it or not.
Christopher Ross+


Meet & Greet / Site Visit 

Saturday, February 8, 2:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 29, 2:30 p.m.

Come meet some potential neighbors. After all, cohousing is all about the people! View the floor plans and color renderings of our new homes. Have a beverage or a bite to support this welcoming locally-owned restaurant. Then we’ll head on down the road to tour our land if the construction crews aren't working. Closed shoes and liability waivers are required for a site visit. RSVP not required but appreciated.
Ricky’s NY Pizza, 5279 N Roxboro Rd, Durham, NC 27712

Other site visit times available by appointment. Email Pat here.

We should call it Meet & Greet & Eat.

Sunday, February 16

4900 Buttonbush Drive, Durham, NC

2:30 - 4:30 P.M

Village Hearth is inviting you to an Open House. Take a tour and look inside our homes.  Meet our members. Things are really shaping up for our Spring 2020 move-in!!! Come check us out. We still have room for a few more good neighbors. Light refreshments provided.
Remember to wear closed-toe shoes and long pants
RSVP not required. For more information:
​Contact: Margaret Roesch, (561) 714-8009.

Happy Hour

Beat the Monday Blues
Monday, February 24 
5:30 - 7:30 pm

Sure; you can come out on a school night...come hang with the cool kids and find out what we’re all about! Enjoy a drink or an early dinner.

Carolina Ale House 
3911 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd 
Durham, 27707


The Best of Both Worlds

Cohousing Documentary Screening with Q&A

Thursday, March 5, 1:30 p.m.
Durham South Regional Library
4505 S. Alston Ave, Durham, NC 27713

Village Hearth is sponsoring a free screening of a new short documentary on cohousing by award-winning filmmaker John de Graaf.


Originally a Danish creation, cohousing struggled to gain popularity in its country of origin for years. That is, until a film was made that explained its merits and how people found it enhanced their lives. It's time for the United States to have a meaningful and honest film about cohousing. 

'The Best of Both Worlds' explores the lives of residents in four cohousing communities in Northern California. It also examines senior cohousing communities and how living in them improves the quality of life of residents." 

Village Hearth Cohousing’s Facebook Page

Each month, you’ll find articles of interest posted on our Facebook page. Here are a few recent posts. Just click the title to take you to the article.

BTW, you don't have to belong to Facebook to view our page,
Wherever you live, it is important to vote. Check your registration in advance and be sure you have the documents you need if your state has instituted a voter id requirement. You can find the information here.
Antidepressant Microbes In Soil: How Soil Makes Your Brain Happy
"Soil microbes have been found to have similar effects on the brain as Prozac, without the negative side effects and potential for chemical dependency and withdrawal. It turns out getting in the garden and getting dirty is a natural antidepressant due to unique microbes in healthy organic soil. Working and playing in the soil can actually make you happier and healthier."
Why You Should Grow A Clover Lawn Instead Of Grass
"Clover enriches the soil it grows in with nitrogen, which it requires in order to effectively grow. Because of this, it can be planted in pretty poor soil and grow just fine. Because of this, it also doesn't require fertilizers to grow."
To learn more about Village Hearth Cohousing, phone Margaret at 561-714-8009 or follow the links below.
Copyright © 2020 Village Hearth Cohousing, All rights reserved.

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