Meet Your Neighbors

I haven’t written here for a long time but hey, I haven’t heard much from you either! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯  Stormy and I are still around, and we’re well and happy in our Colorado home. I have been managing the website for our neighborhood association. We feature weekly stories including interviews with neighbors, neighborhood events, volunteering, local history back to the stagecoach days, our neighborhood farm, and colorful pioneer characters. I’m quite proud of it: Southern Gables Neighborhood Association. This week we did the neighbor interview in a mirror, so to speak. I’ll share it with you. Republished with permission… my permission.

Meet Your Neighbors: Bruce & Stormy McDonald

Another in our series of interviews with Southern Gables neighbors, but with a twist. I have been posting these, but this week we turn the table. Bruce McDonald, answering interview questions written for this series by Christy Cerrone. 

How long have you lived in Southern Gables, and how did you decide to move here?  We’ve been here since 2006. Stormy is from Pueblo and went to college at Loretto Heights in Denver. I came to Colorado after high school and we met at a dance at Loretto Heights. Blind date, love at first sight. After we graduated and got married, the Air Force took us to lots of different places. We always knew we would come “back home” to Colorado. We decided on Lakewood after looking at a lot of different neighborhoods all around the Metro area. It’s a great place to be.

What are a few things that you like the most about the Southern Gables community?  It’s pretty quiet, and the location is close to the mountains and the city. We also like the feel of an “established” neighborhood. When we were looking for a home, the Realtor showing us around commented, “It took me a while but I figured out what you two are looking for. Trees!” We do love the big shade trees all around Southern Gables – well, except during those late spring snows. People too, of course, not just the trees. Since getting involved with the Southern Gables Neighborhood Association, we have met so many nice people that we are glad to know. There is a good mix of older people and young families. We love the sound of kids playing.

Do you have a favorite memory with your Southern Gables neighbors?  We have had such enjoyable times at the monthly luncheons and the annual Neighborhood Night Out at the Green Gables school campus. Both of those activities were suspended during the worst of the pandemic but now that they have started up again we hope they will continue. We hosted one of the block parties the Association sponsored last August, and the Neighborhood Night Out last September was a success.

This year’s Night Out will be on August 26 at the Green Gables Elementary School campus. Since becoming president of the Association last May, I have become even more appreciative of what a great job Doug Whitten has been doing for the neighborhood for so long. It’s kind of intimidating to follow him in this role. I’m glad Doug agreed to stay on with the Board this year, and we have some new people with fresh ideas for keeping up the momentum, helping neighbors know and appreciate each other.

What is the most neighborly experience you’ve had or seen in our neighborhood?  Our first winter here, there was a series of snowstorms that shut down all car movement in our part of the neighborhood for a few days. That first winter, more or less snowbound, we had the neighbors on our block over for a “whatever you have” potluck. We learned by example from the neighbors that keeping the sidewalks clear is important. Many times, those who can shovel the sidewalks take care of it for the ones who can’t.

What are your hobbies or recreational interests?  Bruce: I like to write. I enjoy being part of the Neighborhood Association since I think it does a lot to bring people together. Stormy: I am involved with the American Association of University Women, and I volunteer for a program at church where we handle requests for financial aid, helping parishioners get out of a tough spot. Bruce: Oh, volunteering. I guess that counts as a hobby. I help out at Joy’s Kitchen, right here in Southern Gables. They can always use volunteers. People can come and shop for free, no qualifications and no questions asked. Pretty amazing. It’s good food too, and lots of variety – fresh produce, frozen foods, meat, breads and pastries.

What is your favorite quote or saying?  Stormy: “Live simply so that others may simply live.” – Gandhi. Bruce: “Expect the best.” – me.

Is there anything else you want us to know about you?  After we retired from regular work we joined the Peace Corps and served in Bulgaria. We taught English in schools and at an orphanage, and worked with youth programs in our town. We loved it, and it was a life-changing experience.

7 thoughts on “Meet Your Neighbors

  1. Very interesting and informative, thank you. What you left out was your time spent in southern California, which is how I know you, having sung with you in our wonderful show choir, the New Sounds of Hawthorne. What brought you to the South Bay?

    • Well Hi, Marti! We have such great memories of our time in the South Bay area. How we got there is hidden between the lines in the part that says the Air Force took us to lots of places. California was the last in that chapter; since we liked it so much there we decided to stay. We were there for 30 years before acting on the idea of returning to Colorado. The New Sounds of Hawthorne was certainly a unique choir, wasn’t it! I am singing with a church choir these days, and Stormy prefers to be a listener. We both shared a singing experience recently though – in Italy! We went with the Rocky Mountain Chorale to the Alta Pusteria Choral Festival in the Dolomite region. Beautiful! I got to sing a solo, a little like “Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show.” That was a thrill. Our group had 19 singers, almost half from my church choir who were walk-ons with the Chorale. The love of singing still connects us and brings a lot of joy.

  2. I am so glad to hear you’re still singing,, have wondered but didn’t want to ask. One of my long-lasting PC memories is of you in your hat, with guitar, singing i don’t remember what. Do you? Maybe more than once? I can hear you singing “something like Brother Love’s….”
    Interesting to hear about Joy’s Kitchen. Good work, that! Can you say more?
    Warmest regards to you both.

  3. Hi Elaine, nice to know you remember my singing from our Peace Corps days so long ago. The radio brings it back to me whenever I hear “Wonderful Tonight.” On Joy’s Kitchen, it’s a remarkable phenomenon. I’m glad to share this article with you. Joy’s Kitchen

Comment, reply, agree or deny? Love to hear from you! (Your email won't be shown.)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.