We recently moved to a new neighborhood where we know pretty much everyone on the street. But, it hasn’t always been this way. The last house we lived in, we only knew one of our next-door neighbors. After they moved, we didn’t get to know the new family that moved in. I’m sad to say I don’t even remember their names.
After thinking a bit about the differences between the two, I came up with some convincing reasons on why you should get to know your neighbors, too.
1. You can borrow sugar. Or milk. Or whatever it is you just ran out of that prevents you from making Kraft Dinner. If you’ve ever been in this predicament before then you know you’ve spent at least five minutes contemplating whether you can substitute water instead of milk. And no, it doesn’t taste the same with water.
2. They keep you in the know. On the serious side, they will let you know if there’s been a rash of car break-ins. You know because suburban teenagers are jacking things like your kids’ Little Mermaid DVD and your spare change. On the not-so-serious side, they can let you know the scoop on Jackie’s MIA husband and her new ‘friend’. You know, if you’re into that sort of thing. (I’m not, of course…)
3. You’ll have easy access to babysitters. Finding a reliable babysitter is
impossible in high demand these days. Finding a good babysitter that lives in your neighborhood? Priceless. Now you can finally drag your husband to see that new Channing Tatum movie… Life. Is. Good.
4. You can finally get the house to yourself. That neighbor that’s always sitting in his garage having a beer? He can shoot the shit with your husband for a good hour talking football and fantasy leagues. Lots of neighbors also means lots of neighbor kids. And neighbor kids can have your kids over to play. The tough part? Deciding whether to take a bath, or watch TV during that solitary hour. Or take a nap. Yes, nap wins.
5. You’ll get invited to parties. Even though you don’t need any more Tupperware you’ll still buy something because everyone else is drooling over the new lunch packs. Ok, maybe you just feel obligated to buy something. Dammit. But at least there’s wine, snacks, and no kids.
6. You can actually say “Hello Bob!” when you’re walking down the street. Instead of that awkward “Hi” and then having to look away as quickly as you can and while you pretend to say something to your kid.
7. You can ask for help moving shit. Did your new mission to lose the baby weight spur an impulse purchase of a treadmill? But you didn’t quite think through how you’d get that monster-of-a-beast machine into your basement, did you? No worries, just round up 3 of the neighbor guys to help and volunteer your husband to assist with their basement remodel.
8. You can pool your fireworks together. Enjoying fireworks as a neighborhood is really smart. For one, fireworks are ridiculously expensive. I’ve never spent more money on anything else that only lasts for several minutes. And two, listening to other peoples’ fireworks when the kids are asleep is like listening to scratching nails on a chalkboard.
9. They’ll take care of business. Like shovel the snow. or mow your side of the lawn so it’s even. So next time your husband is being lazy and doesn’t want to cut the grass, at least half of the front lawn will be done.
10. They’ll bring you food. You know, like when you just popped out a baby. You’ll cry tears of joy when a neighbor drops off homemade mac and cheese two days after you have given birth.
Related post: 15 Tips on Surviving as a Mom in the Suburbs