Moving to a new location, hours from friends and everything that was familiar for thirty seven years is difficult, especially when you’re over 60 years old. We moved to the East Berlin area from Stroudsburg — the Pocono Mountain area — to be closer to our kids and grandkids in Ashburn, Virginia, and Pittsburgh and Reading, Pennsylvania. It was a central location and close to major highways. We didn’t know anyone in the immediate area so we had to work on getting acquainted with our neighbors and community. We were happy that East Berlin had a Fitness Center and joined almost immediately. It is a very friendly place and we enjoyed meeting the members. From that membership began a journey of friendship, volunteering and getting to know our community. We joined a local church, and again the pastor and fellow parishioners were very welcoming.
We stopped in at the East Berlin Community Center and learned about volunteering opportunities there. I signed up to help in the kitchen, as I love to cook and bake and I worked in Dietetics and Food Service for over 30 years. I met some wonderful ladies and it was always fun to work and visit as we baked pies and other goodies. Some of the ladies became my heroes — working well into their eighties and enjoying the rewards of volunteering. Everyone was very welcoming and kind to a new kid on the block. They were especially kind and comforting when my mom passed away. I also started to help with the EBAAC Thrift Shoppe, sorting donations one morning a week and occasionally working in the shop. Setting up for the indoor yard sales in the gym was especially challenging, but there again, with new acquaintances and teamwork, we got the job done.