According to Webster’s Dictionary, neighbor, is defined as:
1. a person who lives near another
2. a person or thing that is near another
3. one’s fellow human being
4. a person who shows kindliness or helpfulness toward his or her fellow humans
During my early childhood I grew up in a small town. I remember my parents being friends with several of our neighbors and we probably had about 10ish families who lived on our street. Living in that small town for 10+ years, my parents also had many good friends/neighbors whom they played Rook with, were in the Garden Club together, camped with and did home remodeling with. These neighbors were kind and helpful, as were my parents.
We moved to Florida when I was 15 and this new town had a much larger population. We also lived in a rather new concept, as least to me, a subdivision. This subdivision had hundreds of houses, but my parents still became acquainted with the neighbors around our house. They helped them out, cooked for them and always smiled, waved and talked to them if they were out in the yard. To this day, no matter where they have lived, my parents are still acquainted with most of their neighbors and continue to be kind and helpful to them.
Back in the mid-80’s, my own young family lived in a small, new subdivision and I became acquainted with all of my neighbors (about 5 families). We socialized, shared recipes and three of us even had daughters that were all born within 2-4 weeks of each another. We were only there for about 5 years, but I loved my neighbors and my neighborhood. After leaving this neighborhood I haven’t really been a very neighborly person. I have lived in apartments, rental houses and now a house that is situated on a rather busy road. I did make a point to meet the neighbors to the left and right of me, but they have both since moved away. We know one of the new ones, but haven’t seen anyone on the other side.
Recently though, I have had the privilege of meeting the neighbors across the road. We first met right after they moved in, then things got busy, winter set in, etc., etc. When things warmed up, I made a point to reacquaint myself with them. They are such a sweet family and have 3 beautiful daughters. I also had the privilege of taking their pictures this past weekend and I can’t thank them enough for allowing me to “practice” on them.
I know that we are going to be friends with our “across the road” neighbors. We just seem to hit it off and have a lot in common (War Eagle).
This past Friday evening, I heard a knock at the door and there she was. And she had a little gift in hand. It was a small carrot cake with cream cheese icing!
My across-the-road-neighbor also decorates her house seasonally. I love that. It is such a joy to look at their front door/stoup as I leave my house. They currently have flowers and pumpkins decorating it. It really makes me smile!
I haven’t had this “neighbor” feeling since I moved from that little subdivision 18 years ago. Although it may only be 1 across-the-road-neighbor, it makes be feel good. I look forward to swapping recipes and stories and watching their beautiful girls grow up. Thank you Jennifer, thank you for sharing yourself and your family with us and thank you for the DELICIOUS carrot cake!