Who Are Our New Cloister Neighbors?

It has become it difficult to learn of, and communicate with, new Cloister homeowners except those in the immediate neighborhood. The only reference to a new neighbor moving to The Cloister is a single one-time entry, sometimes containing a phone number, and sometimes not, in the printed monthly “The Cloister News“. The theory is that we are supposed to copy that information into our two year old printed Cloister directory. (perhaps fitting it into the margins of the page…or with Post-it notes?)

We get more information about a resident who dies than we get about a new resident who moves in. Are expectations too high regarding information contained in the official Cloister website located at http://www.cloisteratsthenry.com/ ? (Except for the public part, that website is password protected so contact information about any individual resident could be made available only to Cloister residents.)

The website is not maintained up-to-date..

There are many errors and omissions suggesting that the no one is keeping the website updated and useful to the residents.

Some of the long time residents tell me that “They don’t do computers.”

Many of us who have moved into the Cloister over the last decade say “We do computers and use the internet for many activities and communications.”

We are getting this…...

Instead of this……

Here are a few observations about the official Cloister website:

  • Absentee Ballot for the last Board of Director Election has not been removed.
  • Financial Reports have entries for October and November 2011 and April 2012…nothing current
  • The only Budget posted was for last year but nothing for 2012
  • The only Homeowner Directory consists of images of the printed pages of a directory nearly 2 years old and does not include the 20% of residents who moved to The Cloister since the directory was printed.
  • The Community News section has nothing in it.
  • There is no insurance information about the blanket Cloister policy, we are told to contact Agency Fredrich, Pinson & Rothberg 615-327-0105
  • There is no listing of the current Board of Directors. A note says “The Directory is NOT public. Please go to DOCUMENTS, click on DIRECTORY”. But there is no directory of the Board of Directors in DOCUMENTS
  • There is no listing of the various Committee Chairpersons and committee members if we want to contact them about a Committee matter.
  • The Calendar has no entries.
  • The posted Homeowner’s Manual is simply an image of the printed page of a years-old manual and does not have the most recent updates to Cloister rules.
  • A Cloister homeowner would hope the part of the website available to the general public would say nice things about living at the Cloister and the benefit of home ownership at The Cloister. When I Google the term “The Cloister at Saint Henry” I am pointed at the website which includes one sentence “Welcome to The Cloister at Saint Henry” with most of the rest of that page appearing to be advertising for the management company we pay from our monthly home owner’s association fees.

We homeowners also pay an extra annual charge for that website. Do we expect too much if we look to an accurate, up-to-date and current website that is positive about living in The Cloister, contains information about Cloister operations and finances, and supports Cloister home market values?

This is a survey to get your reaction about the offficial Cloister Website…..

You can add additional comments anonymously in the area below….


Where and What is Cheekwood ?

A six minute drive from The Cloister, less than 3 miles, takes Bonney and I to one of the hidden jewels of Nashville. It’s easy to notice Belle Meade Plantation because it sits right against Hwy 70, the railroad tracks on one side and the Belle Meade Plantation property on the other side of “70”. Cheekwood is more difficult because it is hidden away.

It’s funny, some of the Nashville Streets can be very confusing. My Garmen calls Hwy 70 next to The Cloister “The Memphis Bristol Highway” because it starts way…way…up in the northeast part of Tennessee (Bristol, TN) and runs 502 miles to the southwest corner of the state (Memphis, TN).

If you start on lower Broadway in downtown Nashville and head west toward Bellevue, the same street changes names from Broadway to West End, to Harding Road to Harding Pike to Memphis Bristol Hwy to Charlotte Pike and back to the Memphis Bristol Highway heading west beyond Bellevue. That is no worst than Briley Parkway changing to White Bridge Pike to Woodmont Blvd to Thompson Lane and then back to being called Briley Parkway!!! So much for my many year’s confusion about Nashville street names. I still don’t know the difference between “Road” and “Pike” when someone says Nolensville Road, Nolensville Pike, Charlotte Road or Charlotte Pike?????

Years ago, when we drove down the Nashville from our home in Kentucky we had no idea that Old Hickory Boulevard appears in all directions around Nashville. We found ourselves east of Nashville near Lebanon when we wanted to go to Bellevue.

Old Hickory crosses I-65 both north of downtown in Madison and south of downtown in Brentwood.

Old Hickory Blvd crosses I-24 up north of downtown near Whites Creek HS but in the south it changes names to Bell Road and crosses I-24 near Hickory Hollow Mall.

Finally Old Hickory crosses I-40 West in Bellevue at Gower School and way out east of downtown on I-40 east of Priest Lake Dam.

Driving can get very confusing in Nashville. After nearly 30 years living in Nashville we are starting to understand getting around the streets of Nashville.

Now, back to my “Hidden Jewel”. The Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum is snuggled against Percy Warner Park and along side the Percy Warner Golf Course and offers a “Bucket List” of wonderful surprises.

Cheekwood has a thirty year history with members of my family. It all started when we first moved to Nashville from Kentucky and my older son got a part-time job working in the kitchen of “The Pineapple Room” at the Cheekwood Gardens. That was the first time I ever heard of Cheekwood. At that time The Pineapple Room was like the old Tearooms where silver-haired ladies met for a lunch of either tuna salad or chicken salad or pimento cheese sandwiches and iced or hot tea. I guess my son diced the celery or pimentos or perhaps washed the dishes and pots and pans.

We have had annual memberships to Cheekwood on and off during our period of living in Nashville. Bonney recently bought a Senior Family membership for $50/year when she joined a local Garden Club. I once took Drawing lessons at the Learning Center. My creations once again proved that either artistic creativity was never mixed into my genes at my conception or whatever I received was undetectable.

There are a number of features and benefits that give Cheekwood membership good value:

  1. Security while walking……there is a gate guard at the entrance.
  2. A museum featuring  American art, American and British decorative arts, and contemporary art.
  3. Studio Art lessons in Clay, Acrylics, Mixed Media, Watercolor, Oil Painting and more at The Frist Learning Center at Cheekwood.
  4. Many varied Gardens connected by walkways.
  5. Plus, Cheekwood membership grants reciprocal privileges to gardens and museums throughout the United States.

Frankly for $50 per year Cheekwood membership is hard to beat.

We are truly rewarded by where we live, surrounded by Percy and Edwin Warner Parks, Belle Meade Plantation and Cheekwood. If you haven’t visited them recently, try them out.

Alphabet Soup……..TGIT at GJCC

Most every Thursday the Gordon Jewish Community Center, one mile west of us, hosts a luncheon and Program for persons of a certain age (65+) but any age is invited. These programs include a brief exercise session, a lunch, and usually a speaker program.  It is a place where non-Jews are welcome to join, play and learn side by side with their Jewish neighbors.

The TGIT,  “Thank God It’s Thursday”  Luncheon and Program meets at 11:30 am in the Social Room at The Gordon Jewish Community Center, just a mile away from The Cloister.

Some of their previous programs include

  • Scams and Medicare
  • Cold Cases with Metro Detectives
  • Chopped (A cooking demonstratiion)
  • Metro School Board, What’s new?
  • To Your Health
  • Music For Your Generation
  • *Goddesses and Gardens… Centennial Park & the Parthenon
  • *Music with the “Songs from the Heart” trio
  • *Turkey…a visit with Carrie Mills and Meryl Kraft

Bonney and I pick and choose depending upon the program.

Upcoming programs include:

Thursday, August 16
*Meet at Chabad
Tour the Chabad Synagogue with Rabbi Tiechtel
Meet at the Chabad on Old Hickory Blvd. for a specail talk and tour with Rabbi Itzak Tiechtel.
Lunch: box lunches – 1/2 veggie & 1/2 tuna sandwiches

Thursday, August 23
*The Metro Council with
Councilwoman, Sheri Weiner
Get the inside scoop from Metro Councilwoman, Sheri Weiner from Bellevue. Find out what’s going on in Nashville.
Lunch: Kosher Hot Dogs (or peanut butter and jelly)

Thursday, August 30
*Wine Tasting
Have a few sips and learn a lot! Enjoy a kosher wine tasting with a pro.
Lunch: cheese boards and tapas

Thursday, September 6
*Mayor Karl Dean’s
Healthy Nashville
Healthy Nashville is an initiative of the Mayor’s Office to continually improve the health and quality of life of all Nashvillians. Join Avery Poor, Health Initiatives, Metro Nashville.
Lunch: baked chicken

Thursday, September 13
*New Year’s Celebration with Music by Russ Davis
Russ Davis will wow you as he performs music by one of your favorite musicians. Sing along, enjoy and even learn a little about some of your favorites!
Lunch: Stuffed Cabbage

Thursday, September 27
*The Frist at the GJCC
with Docent, Teri Cohen
“Tour” the Frist (at the GJCC) with Teri Cohen as she shows slides and discusses the magnificent Gees Bend Quilts exhibit showing at the Frist Museum.
Lunch: salad plate with tuna, egg, and potato salad

Thursday, October 4
*Music by
Carol Shaw and Lisa Webb
Celebrate Sukkot at the GJCC with a musical performance you’re gonna’ love! Carol and Lisa will wow you with their very special show.
Lunch: Chicken and matzo ball soup

Thursday, October 11
*Titan’s Tailgate and Cook Out Enjoy a special look at our football team, the Tennessee Titans, who play the Pittsburgh Steelers at LP Field tonight at 7:20pm. Experience a real tailgate at the GJCC.

Thursday, October 18
*Music with Dennis Scott
Grammy award winner and entertainer, Dennis Scott will perform songs that you will love. Also, mark your calendars for a performance by the Wanna’Beatles (one of Dennis’ groups) at the GJCC Main Event on Saturday, November 3.
Lunch: Stir fried chicken over rice

Thursday, October 25
*First Aid and Your Safety with Yvonne Hall
Join Aquatics Director and First Aid Instructor, Yvonne Hall for this important and informative session.
Lunch: Israeli cousine

Thursday, November 1
*NO TGIT…Main Event Week
Experience Beatle Mania with the Wanna’Beatles at the GJCC Main Event on Saturday, November 3.

Thursday, November 8
*Nashville Film Festival Movie, Tony Curtis (possibly)
Enjoy a special movie screening at the GJCC.
Lunch: box lunches / turkey sandwiches

Thursday, November 15
Do you know who your ancestors were? Enjoy a day exploring your roots.
Lunch: grilled cheese and soup

Thursday, November 22
*NO TGIT…Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 29
*Comedy and Music with
Steve Goodie
Songwriter and musician, Steve Goodie, runs the Sunday night songwriter series at the Bluebird Cafe. Get ready for some great parody!
Lunch: spaghetti and meat sauce


Thursday, December 6
*Latke Cook Off
Try some new recipes, enjoy some great fun, and eat up! “Bubbie Flay,” “Rachel Oy Vey,” and “Emeril Shlimazel”
will wow you with their delicious latkes.
Lunch: Latkes & Brisket

Thursday, December 13
*Chanukah Party
featuring the music of
Cantor Bernard Gutcheon
Cantor Bernard Gurcheon will wow you with his Chanukah music and stories. You might even feel like singing along!
Lunch: blintzes

Here’s what The Gordon Jewish Community Center says about the TGIT program

TGIT…Thank Goodness It’s Thursday A weekly program for Senior Adults underwritten by a generous grant from the Jewish Federation of Nashville and Middle Tennessee.
The Thursday Schedule:

  • 11:30 – Blood Pressure Check with Lauren Cooper, RN
  • 11:45 – Exercise with Carrie Mills
  • 12 – Delicious, hot lunch catered by SOVA Food served by volunteers.
  • 12:45 – Program

A program for the 65+ crowd…but all ages are invited! Enjoy the program only at no charge or $3 with lunch ($15/non-members) with advance reservations.

Sign up today with Carrie Mills at
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
or 615.356.7170.

 Oil Painting Class
Tuesday or Thursday 10am-12pm
(1 month   sessions)$75 mo. + supplies / $100 non-members
Instructor: Rhonda Wernick,   professional artist

Ballroom Dancing

With or without a partner

For any level

Wednesdays 7:30-8:30

Oct. 3, 10, 17, 24 & Nov.   7, 14


$100 non-members

Lisa Burghardt, professional   ballroom dancer and instructor

Be an   Entrepreneur-Start Your Own Business with Ms. Biz

MYTH: Starting a business is   expensive.   MYTH: Starting a business is complicated.

Turn any hobby, skills or   interest into a money-making business! Whether contemplating turning your   “kitchen table” dream into a reality, or facing job insecurity, Ms.   Biz can show you how in 5 FUN classes! Topics include business formation,   trademarking, market research, monetizing your idea, finding customers;   creating a logo and a website, and social media marketing. This is great for   ‘momtrepreneurs,’ adults seeking second careers, and adults in career   transition. Ms.Biz (Alison Rinner) worked in marketing for Coca-Cola and   MARS/Pedigree, is an award-winning teacher, and an entrepreneur herself. Ms.   Biz is her 3rd start-up.

Put your joy in a box and sell   it.

www.msbiz.net     http://www.facebook.com/Ms.BIZ.TN

Dates:  Wednesdays, Sept   12, 19, Oct 3, 10, 17

Cost: $250 JCC members, $275   nonmember

Improvisation/Theater   Game Class

Improve your communication and   people skills…perform in front of others and have a great time…out of   work and looking for a job…wow them with that competitive edge. Gain   confidence as you explore the human experience through improvisational games,   theater games, monologues, and scene work.

Instructor:  Brian   Schlanger, native Nashvillian, and Professional New York Actor

Tuesdays, September 4 & 11   and Oct. 16, 23, & 30 (register for any number of   classes)

7:30-8:30pm at the GJCC

$15 per class

Interested   in leaning to play Mah Jongg? Let us know and we’ll offer a   class. taught by Mah Jongg pro, Lee Becker.

Write Your Stories

Mondays, Dates   TBA

12-1:30pm /   GJCC

no charge members ($6 non   members)

Write   Your Own Stories

With instruction from Elaine Parker. You’ll have a weekly   topic and can write your own version. Join us for one, two or as many classes   as you would like.

minimum 5 / maximum 10
*programs sponsored by the   Gordon Jewish Community Center (GJCC) and underwritten by the Jewish   Federation of Nashville and Middle Tennessee, the GJCC, the Prime Time Fund,   and the Meryl Kraft Discretionary Fund.

I have attended previous courses they are very convenient and close by.

Local Farm Stands in the Cloister Neighborhood

Bonney and I have been able to find three farm produce stands within several miles of The Cloister at St Henry.

While shopping at the Old Hickory Blvd stand (I am confident that stand ususlly carries locally grown produce), I chatted with a local farmer delivering fresh produce, his farm was on the river bottom off River Road headed toward Ashland City, he caught my attention with his tee shirt featuring Thrasher Days at Adams, TN, 35 years ago I rode a horse in Adams as part of the Thrasher Day Parade. I really enjoyed that day since I definitely was not a horseman and that parade was a new experience in my life.

We have bought produce from all three of these local stands.

  1. A stand on Hwy 70 headed towards Bellevue. They are there 4 days per week.
  2. A stand on the far side of the Belle Meade Methodist Church on intersection of Post and Davidson Roads. On Tuesdays and Fridays 2-4 PM.
  3. A stand behind the motorcycle/used furniture store on Charlotte Pike off of Old Hickory Blvd, open most days.

This is what the experts say about ripe fruit…..

Look for the “Ground Spot” where the Watermelon sits on the ground. If the ground spot is yellow, the watermelon is ripe and sweet.

Look for deep net webbing on muskmelons(cantaloupes) for a ripe fruit.

Varieties with smooth, harder skins such as honeydews or casabas do not slip and
must be cut from the vine. The skins of these varieties actually feel hairy when
the fruit is not ripe. As the fruit matures, the skins become smooth and
slippery and some varieties change color. When the fruit is fully ripe, the
skins change again to have a waxy feel. In addition, the blossom end should have
a ripe, fruity smell.

Ripe Tomato

Ripe Bananas

If you want to ripen a not-yet-ripe tomato at home put it in a paper bag with a banana. The gas from the banana will ripen the tomato in a day or two.

We visit at least one of these farm stands every few days especially for locally  grown tomatos. For a little variety in life try something from each of them and practice picking out the ripe produce.