John & Joann (children John & Julian)
The concept of co-housing appealed to us when we first learned about it several years ago. We have been involved with Woodard Lane Co-housing since 2006. We are hoping though co-housing to live a simpler, more sustainable lifestyle, enriched by others who have similar values.
Joann works with a Montessori based religious education method, and enjoys cooking and fiber arts. John oversees some of the social service programs at our church. He is interested in politics and social justice issues. Our son John is very interested in music and is taking violin lessons. He is very creative and recreates many experiences he has.
When there are projects going on at Woodard lane he is often helping out. As of early 2014, Julian is an active toddler. He loves to share books and sing songs. He knows where all the berry plants are at Woodard Lane, and if you want any of the berries you have to get there before he does.
I love being alive, living in community, connecting with my family, and hanging out with old and new friends. I have two grown sons. I have spent my adult life as a professional citizen and a traveler. After raising kids and working to develop Options, the local alternative elementary school where I still volunteer, I began teaching Nonviolent Communication which is my current passion. I lead workshops, classes and practice groups. I also mediate both privately and for the Dispute Resolution Center.
I love walking and talking with friends, hiking and camping in the mountains, dancing (particularly contra dancing), studying psychology and philosophy, and continuing to develop the Woodard Lane community. In cohousing, I live with others who want to grow and get to know each other deeply. I like the people involved, the close to town proximity of the land, living in a small space and yet having room for large dinner gatherings and dances, owning less, and sharing stuff and resources.
Margie & Jim
We have been partners since 2000, friends for many years before that, and married since April of 2013. Between us we have five thriving adult children, and two very much loved grandchildren.
Margie: I grew up in Oregon, Maryland, and Colorado. Here in Olympia I’ve worked in a local bakery, a futon and furniture store, and now for the Dispute Resolution Center in downtown Olympia. Family and raising kids has been the most challenging and rewarding part of my adult life. Some of the things I do for fun are yoga, massage, singing harmony, writing poetry, sewing, and kayaking on the Puget Sound. My biggest passion is for being in the wilderness- hiking & backpacking, rafting, cross-country skiing, or snorkeling. I have always preferred living in larger than nuclear family situations and find it satisfying to be part of this co-housing community.
Jim: I grew up in the working class in the 1950s and 1960s in Spokane. After graduating from law school I traveled throughout the USA and Europe. I am curious about nearly everything and especially “the patterns that connect” that everything. I became a widower in 1994 and for many years, my life was mostly devoted to parenting. I enjoy kayaking, playing the piano and guitar, hiking, reading, thinking, and conversation with friends. I love warm salt water and Rumi Poetry. My career as a lawyer and policy planner culminated in a state position where we had the fortunate responsibility of funding the purchase and development of the best places in this glorious state, and then to protect them forever.
Cj and Robin
Robin and Cj have been together since 1997, and married since 2001. We have two small dogs.
Robin: I am passionate about deep, quality friendships, laughing and playing together, and spending time alone to read and meditate. I love to sing, dance and be in nature. It is important to me to be of service to others and so love my work as an acupuncturist and traditional Chinese herbalist. My most recent creative passion is landscaping, which I have lots of opportunity to do here at WLC. My animals bring me much joy and teach me much about life. To know myself and grow along my spiritual path and with others is essential in my life. I am passionate about Cohousing. Being a part of Woodard Lane cohousing allows me to live more sustainably and practice recognizing the oneness of all beings in a broader way.
Cj: At Woodard Lane cohousing I reconnect with the experiences of community I had growing up in Philadelphia. The commitment of WLC to a lighter impact on the environment supports my personal values of sustainability. I love to be out in nature hiking or on my bike to connect with spirit and the quiet place inside. One of the ways I express my creativity is making digital videos of people, events or celebrations. I also play guitar and enjoy being a part of music/song circles. The awesome coho woodworking shop has sparked renewed interest in woodworking . A former teacher, I now am the cofounder of Oly Float, which offers flotation therapy; visit us at .
I’m a social anthropologist who lived with a remote tribe in Ethiopia for two years. I deeply value being part of a co-resident community in my own nation and within my own culture! I’m retired after a research career, and after having my own business as a dispute mediator. Mediation is dear to my heart; my friends in Ethiopia used it regularly to settle their disputes. I’m proud to be one of the founders our local Dispute Mediation Center, where I still teach and volunteer as a mediator.
The joy of my life is my dog Louie, a twenty-pound French Bulldog/small spaniel mix. I love to read, walk with Louie, garden, knit, cook, sing, and play music. My spiritual life is nurtured by a local interfaith group and by regular 5Rhythms and Open Floor dancing. I love living in cohousing!
David & Eva (children Zach & Mia)
We are a family of four who moved to Olympia to be part of a cohousing community and because we wanted to get out of the big city (Seattle). We found ourselves becoming very nuclear and losing touch with our community. We didn’t want that to happen and felt that moving into cohousing would give us the opportunity to engage, interact and live/work with others in a way that maintains and balances the cohesiveness of our family within a larger community. David is an acupuncturist, nutritionist and herbalist. He’s passionate about his work, likes cooking, fantasy baseball, Vipassana practice, physical exercise, and relationship building. He is fascinated with the idea of having an organized life, and aspires to have all loose pieces of paper organized into an intuitive digital filing system by the time of his death. Eva is managing the home front and working as an acupuncturist. She spends her days with the kids reading to them, hanging out outside, and cooking, as well as taking them to various activities, and trying to maintain a certain level of organization in a home that is constantly moving toward chaos, and getting some writing and gardening in during free time while they are in school.
As of 2014, Zach is 11 and is in fifth grade at our local public school, Garfield. He loves gymnastics and is on the boys’ team at Black Hills. He also loves to play video games and throw a baseball around, as well as hang out with his friends in the community. Mia is 6 and attends half-day Kindergarten at Lincoln Elementary. She loves anything related to horses and takes riding lessons a couple of times a month, as well as looking at books and reading and coloring and playing with friends. We all look forward to living and growing up in a wonderfully supportive environment.
Emily & Seamus
The photo shows us with Emily’s niece Aria. Emily and Seamus were born and raised in Olympia and moved into cohousing in 2010. Our favorite parts of cohousing: gardening with neighbors, haircuts by Kate, and the satisfaction that comes from knowing we are working to minimize our environmental footprint. Although Emily works as an elementary school teacher, and Seamus is active in politics, social service, and in the musical community, we both identify as introverts. We place a high priority on privacy and quiet time - which is totally possible in this large, supportive, and flexible community.
Meryl & Linda
Shortly after I moved to Olympia in 2012, I visited Woodard Lane during an Open House and within an hour I knew I wanted to live here. I love the many opportunities we have each day to interact and connect. I enjoy my job – working for the State as a Software Developer. I am a passionate contra dancer, and I am active in the local Unitarian church. I love camping, walking, yoga, Tai Chi, and playing percussion with Samba Olywa.
My daughter Linda is thrilled to be part of cohousing. As a young adult with Special Needs, I love that she can contribute to the community on her own terms. Her gifts of a sweet nature and a ready hug are cherished here, and it is a safe and caring environment. She competes in the Special Olympics and enjoys outing with Specialized Recreation. At home, she loves reading, listening to country music and watching videos.
Josh & Kate (children Arwen and Finch)
Once upon a time, there was a little family of three looking for an inter-generational community to grow with. After a chance encounter with an acquaintance named Heather, they set out to learn about cohousing. Thanks to a plumber named Joe and several generous and interesting community members (now neighbors), they soon moved into their new home.
We now are an active family of four whose passions include gardening, hiking, my little pony, dressing up, fire trucks, reading, family time, creativity, humor, learning, loving, and playing. As of 2014, Finch is a 2 year old sand sculptor, Arwen is a 5 year old horse enthusiast, Kate is a 28 year old stay-at-home mother, and Josh is a 32 year old teacher.
Angela & Charlie
We met while renter-members at Woodard Lane co-housing. After a delightful courtship of some months, we moved to a house a few blocks from Woodard Lane. As “off-campus” members, we stay as active as possible in the life of the community and connected with our many friends at co-housing. Together, the two of us enjoy ballroom dancing and travel in Latin America.
Angela: I moved to Olympia from Napa, California, and now consider it my home. Olympia seems to me a very enlivened community at its core, with active and dedicated citizens working to maintain an invigorated and progressive spirit. While I currently work as an IT specialist for the state legislature, I have an MA in Sustainable Community and an Environmental Planning certificate from UC Davis. My passion in life is my family. I have three grandchildren whom I adore. Music (I’ve played oboe since age 13) and yoga are pursuits that fill my soul. Knitting, dance, creative endeavors, and hiking in the beautiful natural areas all give me great pleasure.
Charlie: I am passionate about my family – daughter Dinah and son Walker – as well as spending time outdoors. For 30 years, I have operated (with two partners) a small shellfish farm in the Puget Sound, a job well suited to my nature. For enjoyment, I like to read (novels mostly), garden, explore the Pacific Northwest and Mexico, and tinker with building projects. A recent transcendent experience for me was beholding the pyramidal Temple of the Magician in the ancient Mayan city of Uxmal.
Newly retired, I am interested in meeting myself. When I know more, I'll let you know. I am so happy I live here and I am so glad we built this place.
I found Woodard Lane Co-Housing in 2014 when I was preparing for a move from Nevada to Olympia and was seeking out affiliations here that might support my values.
Co-housing has been a fabulous place for me to develop rich relationships and learn how to work well within a large collaborative group. I live in the smallest home here and enjoy my privacy, while also appreciating the opportunities to regularly occupy shared space, indoors and out, with my co-ho family-friends-neighbors.
A former English teacher and paralegal, I am now on staff at the local community mediation center. I love to hike, bike, run, kayak, paddle-board, read, and have rich conversations at community meals, over coffee as I sit out in the community green space, or while participating in co-ho projects.
I am fortunate to be the mother of a wonderful adult son and a terrific adult daughter who sometimes stay in one our guest rooms or participate in community meals. As a native of Vancouver, B.C., I enjoy going up to visit family there as well. I'm also our resident "Chicken Goddess," with primary responsibilities for caring for our flock of laying hens. I feel so grateful for the beauty and peace and health-giving qualities of living in this evolving community of delightful humans.