I always wanted to have neighbors near by. I grew up on a cul-de-sac in a small suburb.
Now doesn’t that sound like the beginning of a Lifetime movie.
We knew all our neighbors. They were the type who you would run across the street to a borrow a cup of sugar. They were the type were my mom could say, “will you quick watch my kids?” and then run out for an errand. They were the type were us kids would play endlessly with each other concocting elaborate stories of mermaids, princes and evil sea witches. . .
Wait, isn’t that the plot of the Little Mermaid?
We lived close enough with these people to know when they were having a marital fight, when they were really, really happy and when they were in the throws of passion.
It was awesome.
So naturally when Jeff and I were choosing the location of our home, I wanted it to be in a neighborhood. I wanted everything that I had in my childhood neighborhood and more.
But Jeff wanted land. He wanted woods. He wanted to be out in nature.
Why? I am not really sure since he is by claim a ‘woosie computer boy’ with soft sensitive hands that as far as I know, have never done anything manly in the woods.
So we compromised.
We found a neighborhood set out in the woods with a rule that each land owner must own at least 3 acres of land on which to build a house.
This means that we have neighbors but they are not really the kind that you can bound across the street to to borrow a cup of sugar. Which I guess is maybe a good thing because maybe its not the smartest idea to borrow sugar from people you don’t really know. I mean, what if they have some kind of sugar fetish and do things with their sugar that, well, should just stay between them and the privacy of their own home.
Anyway, we chose this neighborhood because it was the perfect compromise. It seemed like there were people there with kids and the lots were wooded.
But after we moved in something happened. I don’t know if the day that we drove around and saw all the people outside playing with their young kids was the day everyone had friends over or what but after we moved in, I discovered that people who lived in this neighborhood lived their for a reason.
They wanted privacy and quiet.
Well, we don’t exactly know what privacy and quiet mean. I mean, I do but my kids don’t.
Our neighbors have not only been accosted by me running bra-less down the street to chase after a naughty kid but also by my kids themselves who have no filter and ask things like, “why is your belly so fat?” or “do you wanna see the freckle on my penis?”
Our neighbors have always been gracious and stopped when my children run out into the run chasing after a toy and they have also tolerated our loudness but none of them have really become the type of neighbors that I remember from my past.
Recently, we noticed moving trucks in the driveway across the street from us.
This house has been for sale for a while and I prayed that maybe someone would buy it who had young children and would be genuinely awesome. The people that used to own the house were pretty cool but they just had dogs for kids, like literally their dogs were their kids, and they were both doctors who basically worked all the time.
Although, they did have a nice cleaning lady/dog walker. I got to know her pretty well.
I was excited about the prospects of these new neighbors and I was over joyed when I saw young children in their yard. I hoped that this was my chance, that finally someone cool would move into the neighborhood with kids who we could hang out with.
I knew that introductions would have to be done carefully.
The process of making a new mom friend is not one to be taken lightly had has to be done with a certain amount of finesse. I learned from all the preschool moms that one wrong step and ‘BAM!’ you are now out of the mommy group.
I had to work during the weekend when they were moving in.
“Perfect” I thought to myself. “During the week, I can find some wonderful Pinterest recipe that will totally impress them, make it and then next weekend, we can go and introduce ourselves.”
So imagine my surprise when my phone beeped with a text message.
“Babe. I just went and met the new neighbors.”
“What?” I said a loud to my empty office and then typed that into my phone.
“Yeah, they were out so I went over and said hi. I met him but the wife and their kids weren’t home right now.”
I shook my head as my phone beeped again.
“I was thinking of going over there again to ask if I could take their kids off their hands for the afternoon, you know so they could unpack without them milling around.”
Oh sweet pickles!
I just about dropped my phone. This was all wrong. Not at all the process is making new mom friends. It was just too forward and fast. A new mom friend has to be wooed, slowly, sweetly and with just a bit of snark.
Jeff’s intentions were in the right place but the last impression I wanted to make on our new neighbors was that we were trying to steal their children. It was going to be hard enough to convince them that we have indoor plumbing since my boy’s favorite thing to do it stand on the front walk and pee.
“That’s a sweet idea,” I typed “But how about I just buy them a bottle of wine and make them some cookies?”
“Fine” my phone beeped and then again with, “But wouldn’t it be nice to buy their kids gifts too?”
I sighed, oh my ‘anti-social come on too strong computer geek’ of a husband. . . you just gotta love his heart of gold.