Senior Living: A Beary Good Time

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grandparents enjoying senior livingEvery morning, Glen Miller dons his suit and tie and prepares to tour Pennsylvania properties with clients. Although living in a continuing care retirement community, Glen has shown no sign of ending his 17-year career in real estate. And his wife, Fran, is no different, as the couple balance their time between their pursuits and taking in the luxuries of their cottage at Cross Keys: The Brethren Home Community

The busy couple met through Fran’s brother and still recall their first date at the beach one Sunday afternoon.

“Our first date was about a year before our second,” Glen said with a laugh. But as the famous saying goes, absence made the heart grow fonder, and the couple has recently celebrated 52 years of marriage.

Glen, who grew up near New Oxford, Pa. worked with the Department of Agriculture in Adams County for 34 years.

“After retiring, I didn’t really want to stop and do nothing,” he said. As a suggestion from his brother who has a real estate business, Glen took classes and got his realtor’s license.

Having grown up in Hanover, Fran worked for Doubleday Book Publishing. After leaving her career, she took time for herself bowling and joining a golf league. She is now as busy as her husband volunteering for the community gift shop working on greeting cards.

While Glen was already familiar with Cross Keys Village in New Oxford through his former and current career, both of their mothers were residents in the nursing home. He loved the area and felt the community seemed more residential with its setup. As the Millers and their neighbors enjoy the cottages and single ‘country’ homes at Cross Keys, an expansion planned for this upcoming fall will bring the Harmony Ridge West Apartments. These will offer finely crafted interior details and the ability to customize select features, thus adding to the appeal residents have already enjoyed.

“It’s like living in the country here,” said Glen, as he compares it to the false perception of retirement communities feeling institutional.

Also in the works for Cross Keys is the Harvey S. Kline Wellness Center to include a caf�, beauty shop with massage, convenience store and fitness center, which is something Glen can look forward to with the physical aspects of his job.

Also utilizing the fitness center while staying active through her volunteer work, Fran said there is never a dull moment at the community.

“There is always something going on, even when you just go outside for a walk,” she said, “It really is a lovely place.”

According to Glen, the different areas of the community are divided into neighborhoods where a committee is in charge of activities. As a result, the Millers have enjoyed block parties, ice cream socials and holiday parties.

In the Heritage Ridge building, residents can enjoy delicious meals at the Campus Inn, the community restaurant, or kick back in the activities room filled with a pool table, keyboard and large selection of reading material.

But there is one thing the Millers especially enjoy through Cross Keys Village. For the past two years, they have taken part in excursions to Ski Roundtop where people can spend the day snow-tubing or taking in the views with a cup of hot chocolate. Other local homes have also joined the trend.

Although it was hard for Fran to move from her home of 46 years, they are happy to have made the decision when they did. Since Glen served on the board prior to living at Cross Keys Village, he was able to view the new home models at the time.

“I feel it’s important to have a finished product available to see because if you have something they really like, people get ready,” he said, “And it’s better to make that decision when you can both participate in it.”

Although at the time Glen feels he may have rushed Fran in terms of moving, Fran has no complaints whatsoever. With no children, the couple was in a perfect position to move and have only added to their group of friends. The continuum of care through Cross Keys Village was also an important aspect for the two.

“It worked out, and I just love our cottage,” she said, “What pushed me over was that it was available and had the things I wanted.”

The Millers enjoy their cozy cottage equipped with two bathrooms and a two-car garage. The great amount of space also allows them to display their collectibles. Fran owns several Boyd’s Bears, which caused Glen to develop the perfect phrase for their lifestyle at a wonderful community approaching its 100th anniversary.

“We’re having a beary good time,” he said.

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