Kelly (b.1963) I am an avid environmentalist, lover of the outdoors, and aspiring minimalist. So much of why I enjoy living at CVC ties to my goal of minimizing what I take from the earth. CVC’s structure of building the residences on 10 acres and conserving 115 means less land will be disturbed and more preserved than in a conventional residential development. CVC is committed to organic agriculture, which means fewer toxins in the environment and better health for the soil. CVC’s homes are modest which mean less consumption of materials to create them and less space in them to accumulate.
As a family, we like to spend time together doing anything outdoors. At CVC we can hike, swim, cross-country ski, ride bikes, sled, and play games. This area of Vermont is a natural beauty and affords us many opportunities for the same in the wider world around us. We also like to go to the library and enjoy outdoor events and festivals, especially concerts and farmer’s markets; Vermont has lots of all of these. I love to swim and plan to work to create better access to our swimming ponds here.
Community life has met and at times exceeded my expectations. I find I am developing deep friendships here and a love for many of my neighbors. I feel supported and appreciated. I find many opportunities for laughter, sharing, fun, singing and celebrating. This community for me is a wonderful co-mingling of being in midst of nature’s beauty while being close to people who care.
Rick (b.1963) I grew up in a suburban environment in Massachusetts. When it came time for me to have my own home I chose to build in a setting that I was used to. It was a new subdivision, somewhat upscale. I didn’t like it there but wasn’t quite sure why. I sold the home after having lived there for five years and, being in between jobs, I chose to move to Maine where I owned a remote lakefront cabin in the woods. I lived there for about 18 months and when I moved back to Massachusetts I met Kelly; we married in 1998. Somewhere in between the birth of our two sons Kelly came across the concept of cohousing. I immediately realized that it might be a very different living experience from what I knew. We investigated and eventually became involved with CVC in the fall of 2004.
I find life in cohousing to be the antithesis of the suburban experience. Life in the subdivision was highly unfulfilling. There was scant interaction between residents which seemed to lead to suspicion and misunderstandings. I seemed to have little in common with neighbors in terms of values. It was a rather lonely experience.
I now realize what it was about the suburban subdivision that was so unfulfilling: community (or lack of.) I am pleased to say that life in cohousing has met my expectations. There is much human interaction and friendship among like-minded people—although we certainly are different in many ways. Our community seems to be like a big family with plenty of socialization, friendship and mutual support. There is also a great respect for the need for others to have their privacy.
My expectations of community life included potential challenges. These challenges do indeed exist but are quite different from the suburban experience. I discourage persons considering a life here from expecting to find utopia or even some sort of idyllic situation. I encourage you to research cohousing thoroughly, come and visit us for at least a week, get to know us and, after having become an Exploring Member, follow community matters closely (via email.) When you finally decide to join the community expect the following: to give a good amount of time to help shape a community that is not yet fully formed; to share meals and events with some wonderful people; to gain some meaningful friendships; to enjoy a beautiful residential setting; to share and develop some meaningful values; and to play in the sandbox with some absolutely beautiful children.
Kevin (b. 1999) Kevin enjoys life in cohousing and is very social. Even he has his limits though and sometimes, like adults, he needs private time. He is quite friendly with younger children including babies; in fact he often asks to hold babies. He enjoys interacting with adults. He is quite active, high energy and athletic. He loves soccer and baseball, climbing trees, digging deep holes, playing on the Pirate ship, riding his bicycle and scooter, and trying new activities.
Aidan (b. 2004) Aidan loves all his friends here. He only likes the type of watermelon that’s “green on the outside and red on the inside.” He wants to know why dad has “an elbow in his throat.” He loves playing in the sandbox, hiking (particularly when dad carries him in the frame pack,) and playing with his trains. He is friendly and fastidious, cute and cuddly and a tad territorial.