As mother and daughter, Donice Michael and Sharon Peck have a lot in common – fierce independence, love of the outdoors, and a passion for teaching – but they never imagined they would also share the same Lifespace community.
After researching several options together, Peck helped her mother move into Village on the Green 15 years ago, and they both fell in love with the Longwood, Florida, community.
“Mom chose it because it gives a small-town feel that she was used to, the amenities are wonderful, and there are many social events and opportunities,” Peck says.
Michael was an elementary school teacher in rural Central Florida for more than 30 years, and her daughter chose the same profession.
After moving to Village on the Green, Michael enjoyed trying new things, learning to play bridge, spending time at the pool and becoming fast friends with other residents.
During her frequent visits, Peck noticed the opportunities her mother enjoyed and knew there was no other choice for her to call home. She and her husband, Robert, made the move in 2012.
“Moving to Village on the Green was an easy choice," Peck says.
That decision – to live in the same community – will likely become a more popular choice in the coming years, say experts, as parents live longer and their baby boomer children weigh the responsibilities of caregiving.
Peck says she and Michael enjoy their freedom and all the activities available at Village on the Green. She frequents the gym and a variety of fitness classes, and her mom likes to walk and visit the salon.
“There’s so much to do here,” Peck says. “We really can lead our own lives.”
Despite their busy schedules, mother and daughter also find peace knowing they are close to quality health care – and each other. The two share a love of the outdoors and enjoy the ease of taking walks together or simply taking in the beautiful views of the 80-acre campus.
“Things are changing for me now, but I’m really pleased,” says Michael. "And I like being able to be outside so much.”
Peck says it’s comforting to be able to casually bump into her mother around the campus, which happens frequently. She also enjoys being able to visit her mom regularly.
“She moved up here to be close to her darling daughter,” Peck jokes. “But living in the same community has really been special.”