Springmoor is

beauty with remarkable depth

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A Lifetime as a Nurse

Nina Cole, a dedicated member of the Springmoor Board of Directors

Her mother was a nurse and one of her two daughters is a mental health counselor. A nurse, like her mother, Nina Cole has spent her life taking care of others. Today she serves on the Springmoor Board of Directors offering her knowledge and expertise when it comes to taking care of our community. Springmoor’s independent residents have an on campus doctor and full nursing staff available for any health issues that arise from flu shots, eye exams, blood pressure checks, a seasonal cold or a rehab stay after surgery. The community offers assisted living and skilled nursing as well as memory care and part time home care assistance as needed. Nina’s career has given her a lifetime of nursing experiences that she can bring to the boardroom.

The Student

Born in Mullins, a small town in South Carolina, she watched her mother go off to work at the hospital each day. She said she learned to cook early in her life as her mother was often working during mealtimes. Nina’s family moved to Beaufort, North Carolina while her father was in the service. When it was time for college, she headed to the western part of the state to begin her junior college experience at Mars Hill College. Undecided at first, she soon realized that nursing was the path she would pursue. North Carolina Baptist Hospital School of Nursing in Winston Salem became her home for three years as she completed her degree.

Norton Children’s Hospital, formerly Kosair Children’s Hospital where Nina began her nursing career

The Nurse

Nina and William met during her college nursing days. The two were married and shortly after graduation moved to Louisville, Kentucky while her husband was in the seminary. She was employed at Kosair Children’s Hospital and Jewish Hospital during their time in Kentucky. Then after a short stay in Virginia, they made their way back to North Carolina. Nina’s nursing career began in Raleigh at Raleigh Internal Medicine. Becoming the Director of Nursing and managing the staff, she says, was one of her most rewarding positions. She later moved to Carolina Allergy & Asthma Center where she found new challenges treating a new variety of illnesses and patients of many different ages.

In 1979, Hospice was brought to Wake County with Nina’s leadership

The Volunteer

Nina was also very instrumental in bringing Hospice to Wake County. In 1979, Hospice was in its earliest organizational stages across the nation. She became a member for the Board of Directors traveling the state to speak about the benefits and the care they provide to the patients and their families. She continues to be intrigued by the founders and the concept of holistic care they offered. The term “hospice” (from the same linguistic root as “hospitality”) can be traced back to medieval times when it referred to a place of shelter and rest for weary or ill travelers on a long journey. Today the Wake County chapter is known as Transitions Life Care and is one of the larger hospice organizations across the country. They now serve Durham, Franklin, Harnett, Johnston, eastern Chatham and Wake Counties, as well as in Chapel Hill and Carrboro.

During these nursing years, she also raised their two daughters. She helped with the PTA in their schools and volunteered her services at The Red Cross and The Open Door Clinic throughout their younger years. Wherever she could lend a hand and offer her expertise, she was quick to sign up to help.

As a volunteer, Nina has assisted at the Open Door Clinic

As a volunteer at the Open Door Clinic, she, along with many other volunteer doctors, nurses, and clerical assistants offer their time to help those in Wake County that have no access to health insurance. As part of Urban Ministries, the organization remains as the only free and charitable clinic in Wake County with a fully licensed pharmacy. The Food Pantry and men’s and women’s homeless shelters are also part of the agency.

The Grandmother

When she is not nursing, she sings in her active church choir and serves on several committees, her favorite being the church’s media team. She loves to read and says working in the church’s library is great fun. She helps purchase books as well as catalog and shelve those that are donated. Nina also enjoys spending time with her five grandchildren. “Grammy” (as she is called) and her 13 year-old granddaughter are often found at the mall. “What 13 year-old doesn’t want to go to the mall?” she asks. Continue reading →

Rightsizing Tips from the Experts

Rightsizing can easily begin with one closet or one cabinet

Through the decluttering and rightsizing process, I’ve realized that it’s so much more than organizing your stuff, emptying your closets or living in a smaller space. It’s about creating a life with room for what matters most. – Courtney Carver, Be More With Less

Our experts, Pat Barnard, Susan Stanhope and Beth Wenhart, offer tips this week on how to rightsize. These three experts will tell you that this can be an emotional project to undertake. Letting go of family possessions, planning, organizing and physically moving can be stressful for every member of the family. The Springmoor residents that have recently moved will tell you – start early! Once they arrived and the boxes were unpacked, they will tell you they only wished they had made the move sooner. Their smaller home, filled with fewer things, is freeing. The clutter has disappeared and the layout is perfect. Surrounded by their favorite things, it still feels like home.

Pat Barnard of Let’s Move!


Let’s Move! manager, Pat Barnard, shares her lists to help get you started. She reminds us that your goal is to get rid of some things. Start your purging by following these rules:

  • Decide quickly
  • Handle items only once
  • Recognize what needs to be thrown away and quickly do so

Answer these three questions to see if you should KEEP it:

  • Do I use it?
  • Do I need it?
  • Do I love it?

She suggests you do one room at a time. Set a time limit each day and be disciplined. There are many agencies across Wake County that will gladly accept your furniture, linens, kitchen items, books and accessories. Knowing you are helping others makes the task much easier.

Susan Stanhope of Move Elders with Ease


Move Elders with Ease owner, Susan Stanhope, offers her expert advice to get you started with a simplified and safe new home.

  1. Safety trumps everything! Moving too much stuff can create a fall hazard.
  2. Keeping the things you love will make your new residence feel like home.
  3. Keep sessions short (1-2 hours at a time) and give yourself a reward at the end (chocolate, tea with a friend, a walk outside, etc.).
  4. If you feel you are getting too tired in the middle of a session – walk away for a few minutes. Sometimes just moving around a little will help your brain process what is happening and rejuvenate.
  5. Plan ahead for days/times when you anticipate having the most energy to do the downsizing and put it on your calendar.
  6. It’s never too early to start the process. Cleaning out a drawer or a bookcase a week, for instance, can feel very freeing. After a few weeks you will be able to see what great progress you have made.
Beth Wenhart of Carolina Relocation & Transition Specialists


Beth Wenhart of Carolina Relocation & Transition Specialists offers these special tips to begin your rightsizing tasks.

  1. Look at an item and ask yourself “Does this item bring me happiness?”
  2. Don’t keep duplicates.
  3. Give items you use just once a year to one of your kids so you can use it at their house (example a turkey roaster).
  4. Closet Tip: Hang all your hangers in the reverse direction. As you wear each item, hang them back up in the usual direction. At the end of the season, you will have a clear picture of what you don’t wear and can donate those items.
  5. Try to determine where your clutter and excess items are coming from and stop their flow into your home. If one of the issues is paper and mail coming in the door, shred or discard unneeded items as they come in. Don’t let it accumulate. Beth offers three sources to help stop the direct mail, catalogs, and credit card applications from cluttering your kitchen table.
  6. If you feel overwhelmed by this process, then it’s time to recruit some help, maybe a family member, a friend or a professional. Hiring a professional can reduce stress, eliminate family conflict and avoid overburdening your children.

All of our experts will tell you to Start Small – one or two cabinets, not the whole kitchen. Stay focused. Donate. Throw away. Get Started! Excess clutter in your home can be overwhelming. When you rightsize your home you will have a greater sense of peace. Continue reading →

A Path With Many Turns

Ernest Carraway, a member of the Springmoor Board of Directors

The Springmoor Board of Directors includes a dedicated group of volunteers with a variety of careers. This week we introduce you to Ernest Carraway, a Real Estate Attorney, CPA and NCSU lecturer.

The path to the classroom and the courtroom was never expected. Ernest Carraway grew up in Greenville, NC, located in the eastern part of the state. After high school he moved to Chapel Hill to pursue an undergraduate degree at UNC in math. He was unsure where this path would lead him but knew his love for numbers was a great place to start.

The Mathematical Path

After four or five classes in calculus, he remembers taking a class in economics that peaked his interest. He is not sure now if it was the subject or the professor but his path made a twist from math to economics. As he approached his final exams in December of his senior year, he began to wonder where he was going with an economics degree. Off to graduate school, a job in a business field or law school perhaps? The LSAT (Law School Admission Test) was scheduled on campus the very next week so he quickly signed up for the exam.

Ernest and Teresa Carraway

The Law School Path

He received his scores within a few weeks and then applied immediately to UNC School of Law for the following fall semester. He was accepted. The path had twisted again. Upon graduation from law school three years later, he still wasn’t sure the type of law he wanted to practice so he returned to Greenville where a couple of opportunities awaited him.

Describing himself as a shy and quiet student, he was surprised when a family friend, Dr. James Bearden, Dean of the East Carolina University’s College of Business, approached him about a teaching position. Could he stand up in front of a classroom of students that were not much younger than him? Could he teach business law? Would he enjoy the classroom as much as the courtroom?

There was also a local law firm where he had worked during summers of law school that offered the chance to gain a variety of legal experience from the criminal cases in the courtroom to real estate closings.

Ernest with his NCSU Study Abroad Class in Germany

The Path to the Classroom

He became a part-time instructor at ECU while he was also practicing law. A dual career had begun! As a lecturer, the State of North Carolina offers the staff free enrollment in classes on campus. So Ernest signed up for an accounting class and then another and another. He wasn’t really thinking about another degree but realized that with the classes he had been taking, a CPA certification would be easy to pursue and probably help with his real estate and tax law interests. So once again, the path had twisted and he began to double up on his courses and to take some during the summer semester in order to sit for the CPA exam which he passed in May, 1982.

The Accounting Path

From his math beginnings to a law school degree, he now found himself applying for jobs with accounting firms and landed in Raleigh. He was hired to work for Touche Ross as a CPA but the classroom kept calling him back. His passion for the students and teaching was something he never expected but knew he wanted to continue to pursue.

Only a few years after his arrival in Raleigh, he began a part-time teaching position at North Carolina State University which soon turned into a full-time position as a lecturer. He returned to practicing real estate law which would not interfere with his teaching schedule. This dual career would continue for many years ahead.

Ernest’s favorite spot to kayak on the river

The Boardroom

The call to join Springmoor’s Board of Directors came after meeting the Ammons family at Greystone Baptist Church. With his real estate and tax law knowledge, he was a perfect fit for the investment committee and the Springmoor Endowment Fund Board of Directors. He was asked to serve on the board of SpringShire, an Ammons property under development in Greenville, NC. Serving on these boards and committees has been an education for him too. He feels lucky to have joined such a dedicated group of people. He says he has learned more from them than he could ever give back. The quality of people and the responsibility that the directors offer is a gift to each community. He looks forward to serving for many years ahead.

The Carraway Family

The Path Ahead

He and his wife, Teresa, hope to retire “sooner rather than later,” he says with a laugh. Their two children, Ford and Maggie, have graduated from college and are forging their own paths in the career world.

A path with many forks, Ernest’s career has given him a unique niche in the classroom, the boardroom and the courtroom. He looks forward to soon enjoying a little more time on the Pamlico River in his kayak, a good book or a long bike ride. A devoted UNC sports fan and an avid runner, he has a long list of things to do. For now, he enjoys his accounting students with the one-on-one time in the classroom being his favorite part of teaching. He has had the opportunity to teach a study-abroad course in Germany. He is learning new technology to keep up with the increasing demand for online classes. He offers these video presentations for those who might miss a class but he believes it’s always better to spend time face to face. Continue reading →

Five Steps to Make Springmoor Your New Home

What better time than now to take steps to prepare for retirement living? With a move to Springmoor, you will have time to enjoy the activities that you have always had to try to squeeze into weekends or after work. You will no longer need to spend your weekends taking care of the lawn or calling and waiting for home repairs. We will take care of home security while you are out of town. We will do your housekeeping chores and prepare dinner. If you need to see a doctor, a nurse or schedule rehab, you can do it all here on our campus.

We suggest these five steps to help get you started toward enjoying your retirement at Springmoor.

The Woodworking Shop provides a great place to continue your hobby, a place to share and store your favorite tools.

Step One: Meet with your Financial Planner

Before you begin your visits to communities in your area (or in an area close to your family), we suggest you meet with your financial planner to gain an understanding of what is within your budget. A financial planner can help prepare and consolidate the documents needed to discuss your future resident options. They can give you a budget to work within and guide you towards making an informed decision about your future home.

The Wellness Center offers a variety of water fitness classes in our heated saltwater lap pool. Evenings are perfect for a swim with your grandchildren when they are in town.

Step Two: Contact the Springmoor Marketing Department

This step is easy. You can request a tour online or call our office at 919-234-7626. We look forward to meeting you, answering your questions and showing you the campus. Gaining knowledge about our community will help you make an informed decision about your next move. This step at Springmoor usually takes at least two or three visits. Plus you have the opportunity to attend marketing events to learn more about the community and related topics.

The Croquet Court is perfect for neighbors or for entertaining your family when they visit.

Step Three: Add your Name to the Waiting List

Once you have made your choice, it will be necessary to add your name to the waiting list. Like most Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC), Springmoor works from a waiting list. Choosing the size and floor plan that suits your needs will be part of this step. Smaller alcove apartments have a shorter wait time while our larger individual homes with an attached garage have the longest wait times. Of course, these times will vary depending on your specific requests. A marketing counselor can help guide you towards the best fit for your lifestyle. This is an important step in preparing for your move as the large number of baby boomers in this area has increased the wait times.

Putting on The Springmoor Green is great for a little competition among residents.

Step Four: Rightsizing

Now that you have chosen a community and have a possible floor plan or two in mind, you can begin to downsize. Your kitchen is probably filled with baking sheets and serving dishes. Most find that having our dining room staff prepare meals means there is no need for so many kitchen accessories, serving dishes and utensils. The downsizing can begin! Cleaning out drawers, cabinets and even your attic can take time. Beginning the process is an important first step. Giving yourself ample time to downsize takes the stress out of this big task. Having advice from a Rightsizing Specialist can also help.

A Rightsizing Senior Move Specialist can offer advice and guidance when the task seems overwhelming. They can provide several floor plan options using your favorite pieces of furniture. They can give you a list of places to donate, auction or sell pieces that you will no longer need. They will arrange pick-up services for the larger items too. With their prior experience, it is easy for these experts to walk you through the downsizing steps in each room of your house. Packing and unpacking for your move will be the final steps in the services they can provide.

There are four options for dining at Springmoor – you can choose a casual or formal option for almost every meal.

Step Five: Meet with a Real Estate Agent

This step prepares your house for the market. An agent can offer advice on home repairs that will be needed. Power washing, painting, wood repair and carpet cleaning will be part of the steps you may need to take to prepare your house for sale. This process can take several months and with their assistance you will be able to schedule all of the contractors needed to make your house look it’s best for the market. Continue reading →

Rise AGAINST HUNGER: By The Numbers

Our RISE AGAINST HUNGER was a huge success this year! Thank you to the many volunteers that gave their time and talents to make it such a wonderful day.

How many meals were packaged during our Rise event on Tuesday?

51,192 meals were packaged

How long did it take to package the meals?

Less than 6 Hours (record time!) and lots of dedicated volunteers

What was the total donated to purchase the meals?

$29,400 was donated to cover our 50,000-meal event plus enough to help Rise host another 51,372-meal upcoming event.

How many people participated today?

150+ Springmoor Residents and Staff volunteered for the event

How many students came to help?

28 Middle School Students (6th – 8th Grade) and 4 Teachers from The Montessori School of Raleigh came to help. They are students of a former Springmoor employee who loves to participate.

How many Fire Fighters came to help?

5 City of Raleigh Firemen helped haul the boxes and bags to refill the buckets with the dehydrated meal ingredients – rice, soy, vegetables, and 23 essential vitamins and minerals.

How many families came to help?

This was the big story of the day! We were thrilled to have the Residents invite their family members come and help package meals.

Libby Woods brought her son Paul.

Betty Duke was joined by her son Kent.

DG Harwood and his two daughters, Sheron and Lynn helped package meals.

Robin Wright brought her whole family plus a few extras – Scott, Spencer, Stephanie and two of their friends!

Edna Hicks was joined by her daughter, Lauren, and a friend.

Robin Hardison brought her daughter, Chadisey.

Jim and Shirley Overcash were joined by their daughter, Donna.

Kelli Sullivan’s husband, Joe came to help unload the truck.

How many years has Springmoor been doing this event?

This was our 7th year hosting a meal-packing event.

How many total meals has Springmoor packed during these events?

The Springmoor community has now packaged over 300,000 meals

RISE numbers Continue reading →

Building It To Look Like Home

Bruce Ballard, President of the Springmoor Board of Directors

An all-volunteer team of dedicated leaders guides the Springmoor Board of Directors. Their life experiences and expertise have helped build a community for many residents over the past three decades. Bruce Ballard, the current President of the Springmoor Board of Directors, was on the job site when the first shovels were breaking ground on the corner of Sawmill and Creedmoor. He and his store employees were here quite often as the walls of Springmoor were being built.

Home Builders

Bruce began working at Lowe’s when he was in high school. Raised in Weaverville, a small town west of Asheville, his first summer job was at the Lowe’s Home Improvement store located near the Biltmore House. He attended Asheville-Biltmore College now known at The University of North Carolina at Asheville. With his summer job experience and a college degree in business, he knew that the building industry is what sparked his career interest. With a move to Wilson, North Carolina to become a Lowe’s store manager, he and his wife, Sue, began their early careers. The two met in the first grade and were married in their senior year of college. Now with two children and a grandson, they have made Raleigh home for many years.

Bruce and Sue with their daughter, Susan and her husband and son, Mark and Dylan

Store Manager

Bruce managed the Downtown Boulevard Lowe’s store when he first met the Springmoor team. The Springmoor blue prints were complete and the next step was to purchase the building materials, the appliances and the interior finishes. Making Springmoor look like a home was the most important part of the equation when choosing all of the doors, windows, cabinets and trims. A commercial building has to have fire doors unlike a home you would build for yourself, but the owners were adamant that Springmoor have the look and feel of the home they were leaving and moving to in their retirement years.

Celebrating Grandparent’s Day at Dylan’s school

The Details

Finding the six panel commercial doors meant the Bruce had to place a special order for this new style. He remembers requesting the peepholes also be placed lower than normal for these custom-made doors. The trim on the exterior of the buildings had to have a similar look to a residential home too. Placing orders for kitchen cabinets and appliances all came through Bruce’s store too. The orders were large and the home building vendors were more than happy to help as each new alcove, apartment, villa and house became individual homes for over 500 residents.

The desert tan roofing color was used to cover everything, including the gazebo

The roof of the buildings was impressive from the ground as well as from above. The desert tan color and style was featured in many builders’ magazines as the largest expanse of a single color for the roofing vendor. While most of their products went to homebuilders building individual homes, the Springmoor site was using it to finish every home and building on the campus. “It was impressive,” Bruce said.

As he looks around at the buildings now, he remembers discussing so many of the interior details. The 24” stoves were also custom-made for Springmoor. The small 24” apartment style stoves with only three-burners were not what a resident was going to be accustomed to using so Bruce was tasked with finding a vendor to produce a 24” four-burner stove. The Douglas fir doors and the custom stained cabinetry were all part of what made Springmoor unique.

Building with his grandson and Magna-Tiles

The Next Phase

Bruce now leads the Springmoor Board of Directors. The visions the team had in the earliest days continue to evolve as we add larger stoves, built-in microwaves, custom quartz countertops and a host of other amenities. Retired as a regional vice president of Lowe’s Companies Inc., Bruce now fills his time building homes with his ten-year old grandson. “He loves Magna-Tiles and can build just about anything with these.” He is fascinated with his grandson’s skills and his creativity.

Bruce and his wife, Sue, are active in their church, both leading and participating in numerous committees. No surprise, Bruce is on the buildings and grounds committee as well as the finance committee. He finds time for a few rounds of golf each week too. The best part of retirement is working on his golf game! The friends he has known and competed with for years as well as being outside are what make it such a great game to play.

The Springmoor vision began years ago when the Sawmill and Creedmoor corner was only a forty-two acre plot of land filled with trees. The beautiful campus it has now become is a success because of the attention to detail. From the custom doors to the extra millwork, Bruce Ballard helped build a community that he now leads into the next phase with a team of dedicated Springmoor Board of Directors. Continue reading →