Delaware Street Commons Members
We are a group of people with diverse interest and ages, who hope to see even more diversity develop as new members join our project. Our group currently includes singles, couples with and without children, and those who plan to have children; we have working folk and retired folk; we vary in age from two to over seventy. We have artists, programmers, engineers, social workers, a minister, and more.
Some of us have written short profiles so that others may get acquainted with them before getting to know them in person.
Gay grew up in Westchester, Illinois outside of Chicago. She has lived many places since leaving Illinois at the age of nineteen. Along the way she raised eight children and now enjoys visiting her thirteen grandchildren, including one adopted grandson. She also quilts, travels, reads, and likes a glass of white wine now and then.
"I like Italy because of the attitude of the people. They seem happy and drink wine."
She sees life in cohousing as a way to continue to be independent and to contribute to society as she ages. She also sees cohousing as an environmentally friendly way to live, and she is looking forward to living near her son Rich and his family.
"When I was little, there was a depression. Everyone was poor. I remember my father found a quarter in the snow one day and went to a diner for a cup of coffee and some breakfast but felt so guilty about not sharing it with his family, he couldn't finish the food in spite of his hunger. Someone left milk outside our door several times a week but we never knew who. I was too little really to do anything to help. So, I decided that I would grow up to always be a contributor."
Rich, Vicki, Sophia and Joey
Vicki and Rich met in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where Rich earned a master's degree in urban and regional planning at the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. They were married in 1993.
Rich was originally trained as a chef at the Culinary Institute of America before earning a BS in business administration from Duquesne University. Rich now am collaborative projects coordinator for Success By 6 Coalition of Douglas County, a coalition of agencies and individuals concerned with issues facing families with children under age 6. In April 2003, voters of Lawrence and other areas served by Lawrence Public Schools elected him to serve on the Board of Education.
Rich come to cohousing with a lifetime of experience as a vagabond -- a wanderer -- accustomed to stepping into and out of different communities and cultures. Cohousing offers the opportunity to participate with others to shape a community of his own making. He gardens, reads theology, philosophy and contemporary literature, practices yoga and cooks with great passion.
Vicki grew up on a dairy farm in Beatrice, Nebraska. Her family of origin is Mennonite and she grew up with many relatives and a deep sense of community. She was active in the public school participating in music, leading the international student club, and presenting 4-H projects at the local fair.
Vicki graduated from Bethel College in North Newton, Kansas with a degree in Social Work. After college, Vicki volunteered for two years in Pittsburgh, PA working with homebound elderly, coordinating a restorative justice coalition, and working with families of incarcerated individuals.
Vicki met her husband Rich while in Pittsburgh. Following her volunteer assignment, Vicki attended Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and received a Master of Divinity degree in 1995. She was ordained in the Mennonite Church (USA) in 1998. She has served in both associate and solo pastor positions. Vicki currently serves as Chaplain at Lawrence Presbyterian Manor.
In addition to her work, she volunteers as the Chairperson for Womanspirit Connection, an interfaith spiritual network for women in Lawrence. She serves on the local elementary school site council and helps convene a group of clergy women in Douglas County.
On top of balancing family and work, Vicki enjoys reading, singing, playing piano, contemplation and walking.
Vicki says, "Cohousing fits very well with my long held values of community, simplicity, nonviolence and practicing inclusive love as modeled by Jesus. I'm excited to share my long held values with my children in contemporary, relevant ways."
Vicki and Rich have two children, Sophia, born September 1997, and Joseph, born January 2000.
Hi! My name is Linda. I'm a C++ computer programmer currently working at Google, writing software for radio automation systems. I'm fortunate to be able to work at home, though I'll be happier when the project is finished, and I can have someone to talk to during a break. I'm a native Kansan who has lived and worked in a number of other locations, before deciding to come back home after a layoff in 1988.
I'm single, but otherwise owned by a tabby cat named Kaluha and a tuxedo cat named Tarika, who loves to ride on my shoulder. When I'm not sprawled in the recliner providing a warm lap and fingers for furry critters, I'm apt to be sitting at my computer, surfing the Internet, or attempting to write stories or create artwork.
I've been aware of intentional communities for some years, and was briefly part of a group in downtown KC. When Linda Journeys told me about this group in late 2000, I was very interested, and started to attend meetings in February. I joined as an equity member in July 2001, and moved to Lawrence from Overland Park in early 2003. I'm looking forward living in a community that I can be part of even after I retire. Some people are looking forward to not having to cook several times a week: let me just say, I'm looking forward to cooking--for more than one person, that is!
Mary grew up in a close-knit neighborhood in Los Angeles where the nuns at her grammar school had known her family for two generations. As an adult, her thirty-two year career was with the Santa Fe Railway, specializing in claims management, marketing and customer service. Moving up in the Santa Fe ranks, she lived in Los Angeles, Ann Arbor, Michigan and Topeka, where she fell in love with Kansas. She currently spends part of her time in the tall grass prairie of the Flint Hills with her trusty dog, PD, where her goal is to be a good steward of the land's native grasses, wild flowers and wildlife.
Mystery, science fiction, nature photography, travel, the winter sky and sitting in the sunshine are some of her favorite things.
For Mary, co-housing is a return to the kind of place she grew up in - urban, diverse and multigenerational.
Jen and Ralph
Ralph and Jen learned about Delaware Street Commons soon after they moved to Lawrence and became active members in 2001.
Jen loves living in Lawrence, and has made it her "home town". She works in Topeka as a researcher for the Kansas Department of Transportation. In the rest of her time she enjoys knitting, reading, dancing, and riding 'Clyde' the tandem bicycle with Ralph.
Comfortable with nearly all things technical, Ralph is most often found repairing broken things: widgets, computers, bikes, and other assorted machinery.
Locals believe he is building a mad scientist laboratory in his basement. Igor denied the existence of a basement.
If I am one of the jobs I’ve had, then I am a Peace Corps Volunteer. I am cause-oriented, culturally curious, and travel ready. Likewise, a Gemini, non-fiction reading, dog person who likes line dancing, cribbage, the NBA playoffs, KU’s Institute of Haitian Studies and Greek food. I have been a Democratic activist, involved in various campaigns.
While officially retired from public administration and politics, I am busy with a multitude of interests. In Lawrence, I have served on the board and love the work of East Lawrence Neighborhood Assn. (ELNA). I like the outreach of both Plymouth Congregational and St. Luke’s AME churches. I like the huge potential for Delaware Commons, with the new families and the “No Vacancy” sign.
I moved here from the Black Hills, S.D., in June of 2007, in fact the first buyer beyond the LLC members. Now, with a yearning for South Dakota and the long ties I left behind, I am returning there in this year. I certainly want to stay in touch with friends here, and will make return trips, until my house sells and beyond. Best wishes.
Judy, a life-long learner with a movement background, grew up in the mid-west in the 50s with extended family around her. During her teaching career, she lived on the east coast with her family. She began to appreciate the value of community as her sons left for college and she stepped into a new phase of life.
She has been drawn to work in community with others to develop a network of colleagues who are committed to educating the general public about the importance of movement in learning.
Presently splitting her time between cohousing communities in Kansas and Virginia, she enjoys the 19 families at Virginia's Blueberry Hill who share a common interest with Delaware Street to develop an old fashion neighborhood in a new way. She is grateful for the extensive effort that has gone into the project to advance it to the present state and welcomes the privilege of being part of this community.
Greg, Tina, Lyla, Emmalyn, and Gabriel
Lyla and Emmalyn were born in Sydney, Australia and lived their first 8 years on a sailboat cruising up toward the Barrier Reef and then lived in 'the bush' home schooling and catching rain water, collecting eggs from their crazy chickens and helping build an addition to their home out of stone and natural materials. In 2008 they moved to the U.S. with their mom, Tina, and after researching a few intentional communities, they were surprised and delighted to find that there was a co-housing community right in Lawrence where Tina had attended KU years before.
The first potluck we attended at the Delaware Street Commons was the night everyone else happened to bring desserts and so the group was grateful for the pot of chicken soup we contributed.
Greg moved to Lawrence 5 years ago and joined the three girls shortly after and they now all work on the home they bought at the Commons. He likes to contribute by being handy around the place and by displaying beautiful artwork on the Common House walls. In June of 2010 Gabriel was born in the home and completed this family of five.
The girls love having so many friends just outside their doorstep and sharing meals is everyone's favorite part of living here.
Kerry and Peyton
Howdy. I’m Kerry and this is me and my youngest, Peyton Noelle. We moved into DSC because their philosophies fit our philosophies and we have since developed a beautiful relationship. Not that I know anything about such things. I am a single mommy of three. My eldest daughter, Kendal Marie and her husband T.J. live next door and my son, Ian Joseph, is their roomie. So, my whole family is here much to our extreme pleasure or extreme horror—depending on the day. All joking aside, I couldn’t be happier to fuse my family in with the DSC family. I consider us snuggle buddies.
I am a 40-year-old junior at KU, currently majoring in Religious Studies with big, big plans for graduate school. Reading scripture from faiths of all kinds is both a hobby and a passion—perhaps this is why I am single. Kendal and I attend KU together (she is a literature major) while my son and youngest daughter share a passion for art. In addition to my academic studies, I continue attempting to become one with the universe. I can feel my cosmic powers growing everyday, although the sun did rise last Thursday despite my best efforts to prevent it with my mind. I shall endeavor to persevere.
Melissa and Sierra
Melissa and her daughter Sierra moved to DSC in August 2009. Both Kansas natives, Melissa moved to Lawrence in 1995 and Sierra was born in Lawrence. They lived on the island of Kauai for a few years when Sierra was little where an interest in intentional community living developed. They are happy to find co-housing in East Lawrence. Melissa is studying at KU to teach middle/high school science and environmental studies and she works part-time with the Wetland Learner’s Project. They both love life at the commons and feel very fortunate for the gifts that it brings into their lives, like cooperation and friendship.
Jessica, Jori, and Kaydi
I am a graduate from the Univ. of KS with a degree in English/Lit and have since become independently wealthy. All kidding aside, I have several priorities in my life I am focusing on right now. Probably the most important priority is creating and enjoying a satisfying and joyful life with my children. In addition to family life I am currently building my own cleaning service, while working as the Youth and Family Ministry Co-Director for Unity Church of Lawrence, and working part-time doing health insurance enrollments. I also volunteer as a crisis counselor for Headquarters Counseling Center. Developing my own spiritual knowledge is also a constant priority. And, engaging and helping sustain a close-knit community where I REALLY know and like my neighbors is HUGE! I love the opportunities DSC gives my children and myself to develop deep connections with children and adults outside of our immediate family and see the world as a safe and beautiful place.
Dan, Jenine, Katy, and Lexi
Dan and Jenine have lived in East Lawrence for 7 years. Jenine works at KU and Dan is going to school to get new skills. We share passions for nature, literature, and feel very lucky to have discovered DSC. We've enjoyed gardening, pot-lucking, and just hanging out with our neighbors. We are happy sharing resources and concerns too. Our kids, Katy (8), and Lexi (6) will be attending New York School and love having so many fun kids close by!
Mark, Julie, Will and Jack
Lana, Miranda, and Duncan
Lana moved to DSC in April 2010. She is a long-time resident of Lawrence and has always wanted to live in East Lawrence. She brought her two children with her, Miranda, 13 and Duncan 9. They are enjoying DC very much! Lana is a substitute teacher at Prairie Moon Waldorf School, and a singer/songwriter. She loves having and being in an intentional community. "It's amazing how the connections and intentions work in this community, my children and I feel very blessed to be here at Delaware Commons."
Brian, Tanya, Caelan, Corin
Beth Ann and George
Beth Ann and George are empty nesters who raised three sons. Now they share their home with their two cute little dogs, Buster and Trixie. Hobbywise George is an avid cyclist and Beth Ann is a quilter and knitter. Moving to Delaware Commons in August 2010 was part of their downsizing plan. They generally have a Saturday night day that involves walking to a downtown restaurant for dinner followed by ice cream at Sylas and Maddy's and they are regulars at the DSC Sunday evening potluck. They have enjoyed getting to know all of their interesting neighbors at DSC and relish the intergenerational makeup of the community. Buster and Trixie love all the wonderful kids who take them on many walks and play with them.
Zoe and Derek
We are two young romantics, freshly moved from a callous of Kansas City, and excited about the lovely community here on Delaware Street. We love music, drawings, paintings, writings and all artistic expressions of any kind. We were both vegetarians for many years, but we have very recently started eating salmon and select other fish, which I guess makes us pescetarians. We drink tons of tea and would love to share a cup with anyone in this lovely neighborhood, likewise, we are very interested in herbal remedies and natural health. Cicadas are our favorite insects and turkey vultures are our favorite animal at the moment. We have two indoor black cats, an adolescent Maine Coon named Ginkgo (whom we trained to walk around outside on a leash) and a sweet old lady cat named Christia. We want to live a vibrant life here in the Delaware commons and can only hope to meet and get to know personally all of our neighbors and improve our community as best we can, while making many friends along the way.
Ken, Amanda, India and Ethan
Paula and Maya
Liz is a writer living in Lawrence. A southwest Kansas native who attended Kansas University, she recently returned to Lawrence after living in Chicago and then on the East Coast for more than 30 years.
My name is Linda Journeys. I chose my last name, and I'm interested that many people react strongly to a "taken" name, whether with interest and curiosity, or with discomfort and disapproval.
My family moved to Olathe, Kansas (from Oklahoma via a one-year detour through California) in 1969, so I effectively grew up in Olathe. I lived in Lawrence while attending the University of Kansas, then spent 15 years in greater Kansas City. After a divorce I lived alone for the first time in my life in 1999, an experience I found both dismaying and enjoyable. Since then changes in my personal and professional lives led to several moves, including several months in Texas, but mostly in greater Kansas City and Lawrence.
By profession, I work as a system administrator supporting back-end servers running OpenVMS or U*x. When not working, I like to read, visit with friends and family, read, go to plays, and read.
I was at the first meeting of the group that later became Delaware Street Commons, in November of 1999, and am also one of the original investors. I currently live with my extended family in Olathe, Kansas, and expect to live there for the foreseeable future, although I look forward to living in Delaware Street Commons at some later date.
Marci and Joe
A special thanks also goes out to members who helped us along the way - Francis, Tava, Sarah, Bruce, Jim, Mary, Brian, Grant, Bea, George, Terri, Margie and Steve - your efforts are part of our community.