The Cream Colored Fire Truck That Wasn’t

A few days ago I turned into The Cloister and spotted what looked like the front of a cream color  Emergency Medical Services truck far down on Cana Drive.  I headed toward the truck to see what was happening. Nosey me!

As I drove by I discovered that it was not an EMS truck but rather a Schwan’s Food Delivery truck making a delivery to one of our neighbors.  I stopped and the driver gave me a Schwan’s catalog. The driver told me she was out of Portland, TN and was substituting for the regular Route Person who was ill. She couldn’t tell me anything about the level of sales at The Cloister but she knew there were some customers.

Since then I had an interesting conversation with Nancy Kile, a neighbor on our block. I noticed a Schwan’s truck had stopped in front of her home and made a delivery. I asked her about her experience with Schwan’s Home Delivery. This is what she sold me….

Nancy started buying frozen foods and meals from Schwan’s 10 years ago when she lived in Cookville, TN. She continued buying from Schwan’s after she moved to the Cloister. She says that shopping at a supermarket is not as convenient for her and the food is usually great tasting. She can return anything she dislikes for a full refund. Nancy preorders her food on-line for their regularly scheduled delivery every other Wednesday between 11:00 am and 2:00 pm. Her last order was for for 11 items. This is what she bought:

  • Cheese tortellini
  • Broccoli Pasta meals
  • Strawberry Frozen Yogurt
  • Roast Turkey with Veggie Meals
  • Chicken Egg Rolls
  • Chicken Broccoli Express Bowls
  • Breakfast Croissants

All of these are individually frozen allowing the remaining unused product to be returned to the freezer. I asked her what was best tasting and she said, “The Ice Cream is out of this world and the Yogurt is delicious too, with big chunks of strawberries. And the food is generally restaurant quality.”

Nancy orders from the website but uses their printed catalog for convenience and meal planning. The website is especially useful since each item is reviewed by customers and given 1 to 5 star ratings as well as individual customer comments.

I talked to the Schwan Middle Tennessee Sales Manager Rob Benjamin to determine what special deals are available for new Schwan customers at The Cloister. This is what he told me for new buyers…

  • a 20% discount on the first two orders minimum of $25 per order
  • a $5 discount on the third order minimum  of $25.
  • Schwan Rewards of one point per dollar spent worth 5 cents per point on purchases.
  • Delivery charge is $1.89 per visit which includes TN Sales tax
  • The driver is happy to deliver the food directly to the customer’s freezer. Rob says the drivers know how to store foods in a freezer so they are most convenient. They have a lot of experience with rearranging foods in their trucks!
  • I wouldn’t be surprised if the driver himself doesn’t have his own special “New Customer” rewards. It wouldn’t hurt to ask.

If you need any more information, go to the Schwan’s website. Click

Bonney and I like what we see and hear about Schwan Foods.  We will place our first trial order in a few days.

Smart 911 Can Save the Lives of Cloister Residents

I recently heard about a special feature of Nashville’s 911 Emergency System. Bonney and I are registered to provide Emergency Responders with information that will help with their emergency care and rescue efforts.

Here’s what Metro Nashville says about the new Smart 911 system.

Nashville Emergency Communications Center now offers a free, new service to improve   9-1-1 response. After you sign up, any 9-1-1 call you make will include important medical information about you or your spouse. This can help operators and first responders address any issue you may have faster and more effectively.

Help 9-1-1 help you

Sign up today at

Supported by existing 9-1-1 fees – free to register

Brought to you by Nashville Emergency Communications Center

100% private and secure

Help EMS treat you:

Tell Smart911 about your family’s medical issues – like heart
conditions, allergies and stroke history. This way when 9-1-1 receives a call, EMS will arrive with the appropriate equipment. For those who have a family member with Alzheimer’s, Autism or who is deaf, this service helps as well. Instantly 9-1-1 knows the caller’s condition and location without having to rely on verbal communication.

Help Police protect you:

Smart911 information can help police in numerous ways. Today when a child goes missing, it takes time for police to obtain a photo of the missing child. With Smart911 police will have that photo instantly and can begin a wide scale search sooner. Additionally, this service helps police locate you if your 9-1-1 call drops for any reason. This allows the police to locate you and your family more quickly during emergencies.

Help the Fire department rescue you:

With Smart911, call takers can notify Fire Fighters of exactly how many people live in your house- including pets – to ensure that everyone is rescued during a fire.

Your information is 100% private.

Your family’s profile information is completely private and secure. The details you enter on our secure and protected website are only shared with 9-1-1 dispatchers and first responders in the field, and only when you or your family members dial 9-1-1.

Cloister residents may want to consider using this service. It may save your life.

For more information click on..

GJCC…A Nearby Neighbor With Good Senior Programs and Health Facilities

Soon The Cloister pool will close for the season and winter cold will be upon us in a few months.

Bonney and I have always been members of either the YMCA, a private health club, or, as now, the next-door Gordon Jewish Community Center (GJCC).   All have provided  places for our health and social activities. We now have a senior family membership at the GJCC for just over $50 per month.  We choose our healthcare under the original Medicare plan and we belong to the GJCC under a regular Senior Couples membership. The GJCC also participates in the Silver Sneakers Program.

We like the GJCC because it is a two minute, less than a mile, drive from our home and has the facilities and programs that we need and enjoy.  The GJCC has an indoor track, indoor swimming pool, a number of aquatic exercise programs, and  an equipment room loaded with modern exercise equipment. Golden Age Club TGIT (Thank Goodness It’s Thursday,Thursdays 11:30 – 2) is a group for senior adults that meets most weeks.The lunch costs $3 per person. They even do a blood pressure check. The weekly program includes entertainment, activities, or guest speakers.  We attend Bridge classes almost every Wednesday morning from 10:00 am to 12:00. Janet Bender does a great job teaching the Bridge classes.

But there are added benefits to being a GJCC member for those who can no longer drive or have limited mobility……

Buz-A-Bus provides round trip door-to-door service to and from the Gordon Jewish Community Center. This service provides transportation for senior adults, 62 or over. The service also will take them door-to-door for any personal need such as medical appointments, organizational meetings, grocery shopping or shopping at local malls. Call Maureen Riley 352-7057 to schedule pick-ups.

Indoor Swimming Pool with ramp access for easy entry into the pool:

We use this pool after The Cloister pool closes down for the season.

There are many other classes and activities…all within a two minute drive from The Cloister.

I have included a link to the GJCC web site. Click on Gordon Jewish Community Center in the Useful Links for Cloister Residents to the right.

Skunk, Deer, Fox and Other Wildlife Critters at The Cloister

Since Bonney and I have moved to The Cloister we have either seen, or neighbors have reported to us, sightings of Skunk, Deer, Fox, Squirrel, and Moles. This is not surprising since we are surrounded on three sides by nearly impassable hills. Two areas are effectively wildlife refuges…the Warner Parks. From the Warner Parks in the south the critters simply cross Hwy 100 and the Railroad tracks and they are into the woods and they can travel through the hills until they reach The Cloister.

Other critters come from the northern hills between Hwy 70 and Old Hickory Blvd and cross Hwy 70 into the old HG Hill property on the other side of the Jewish Community Center. The HG Hill property is also part of the Warner Parks system. According to the Warner Parks Nature Center HG Hill never lived on the property but he and his friends used it for hunting. The Hill Farm area has bobcats, coyotes and even rattlers. There are no fences enclosing any of the Warner Park properties. Creatures are completely free to roam the hills adjascent to The Cloister.

Year after year the Cloister HOA sends out Critter Hunters to trap feral cats and skunks and release them to only God knows where. Possums and raccoons and neighborhood birds add to our little zoo. I am no expert in the matters of so-called nuisance critters but it seems to me that we are surrounded by an unending source of these creatures.But I like them.

Frankly, except for the darn feral cats, I enjoy all these animals. Several weeks ago Bonney and I were leaving Barbara Bentley’s home after a wonderful dinner and companionship with Barbara and some Cloister neighbors she invited. Instead of driving directly home we turned down Sienna and spotted a deer ambling alongside the rock wall at 432 Sienna. It was a beautiful doe and an absolute treat to watch.

We have had a report of a fox trotting down Cana toward Marquette Drive. After my recent comments about our feral cat problems I have received dozens of e-mails from neighbors with enjoyable comments about our Cloister creatures .

Valuable Comments From “Cloister Living” Neighbors

“Cloister Living” neighbors are making valuable comments directly to me by e-mail. What they say can be valuable to all Cloister Living neighbors. In order to protect the anonymity of persons sending E-mails directly to me, I edit various comments to remove their identities before I post them. I worry that some would  consider that a form of censorship…and that is the last thing we need. It has occurred to me that some readers are not comfortable with the idea of making comments directly on the “Cloister Living” website.

There is an action that any reader can take to assure the exact content of their messages and their anonymity. We can share important and useful information with our neighbors. Simply use the Comment line at the bottom of each article posted. If no comments have been previously made, then the Comment line will say “Leave a Comment”. If others have already made comments to the post then the Comment line will say “1 Comment” or “2 Comments” and so on. If there are comments and you click on the Comment line, you can read the comments entered by our neighbors. In any case if you click on the Comment line you can enter your comment in the box that opens for you. The Internet has opened exciting opportunities for all of us to help each other and and enjoy better “Cloister Living” at The Cloister at Saint Henry.


you can click on How can living be better at The Cloister? on the line immediately below the top banner and make a comment to all of us on any subject. The line immediately below the banner of the Blog looks like this:
Home     About Pete     Early Years at The Cloister     How can living be better at the Cloister?      September’s “The Cloister News”

You can try either way and make a comment if you wish….