may, I love you.

{OBoy walking home from the park with our across-the-street neighbor.}

We’ve been outside a lot lately. I have taken a solemn oath with myself to never once complain about the heat or humidity this summer, given the winter we endured. Nothing makes you appreciate muggy weather like snow storms in late April.

I’ve seen clearly that the boys do so much better when they’ve been outside for extended periods of time. They nap better, they play better, they eat better, their hygiene is better (because Mommy can’t stomach the thought of those feet rubbing around in their sheets all night), life just goes better.

We spend our mornings and sometimes our evenings (thunderstorms permitting) wandering the block playing with friends. Apparently there is something in the water here in our neighborhood because there are 13 children in Kindergarten or younger on our block. JUST our block. OBoy and OBrother will bike/run/scoot/wagon-ride down to friends’ houses and play in their yard for a bit, then they will head back this way as a pack and check out our front yard toys. It makes time fly and often leads to hours spent chatting with other mamas. We have spontaneously done dinner together with other families twice now, simply because it flowed naturally from our afternoon.

I think this is what communal living is supposed to be like. One afternoon in early May when we realized we would pretty much be sharing children all summer, a few of us parents had a conversation to the effect of “Feel free to send my kids home whenever you need to, or to tell them not to do something if they are making bad choices”. And so we do. We borrow kids and hang out, we remind everyone to share (whether you’re our child or our neighbor), we bring out cold Diet Cokes for other moms, we tell entire groups of rowdy boys not to throw sand, and sometimes we end up eating burgers together and playing until bedtime. Even when we head down to the park a few blocks away, we tell the other families and a few join us.

This. This is what I was missing all winter. Human interaction. Friends for my boys. Grilling. Barefoot toddlers. Daily kid showers where the drain water runs brown from dirt. Coffee on the front steps while kids squeal and bike up and down the sidewalk.


12 Responses to “may, I love you.”

  1. Jennifer

    AMEN! We were lucky enough to sell our townhome last fall and move in to a house…with a backyard, and rockin’ neighbors with awesome kids. Seriously. NOT having this the past few years of my kids’ lives has made me so incredibly grateful for it; rowdy boys and all.

  2. melissa

    this is beautiful! this is the kind of neighborhood i long for. in the mean time we make this happen among friends around town. it just takes a bit more planning and driving! i totally agree- this is what community is all about!

    enjoy your summer!

  3. Laura June

    We love that too! We are so lucky to have our neighborhood turn out like that. There are about 8 kids in elementary school in the houses around ours that play together. We have random dinners and bonfires all the time! Crazy how we just happened to stumble into that spot without knowing it.

  4. Brittany

    I so want this! We live in a neighborhood with kids of all ages, but no young ones in our “block” so to speak. And my introverted nature makes making friends with anyone, neighbors included, a major challenge. I’m envious of your neighborhood!

  5. Elaine A.

    It is SO wonderful to have friends like that in your neighborhood, for many reasons. Glad you all are able to get out and ENJOY the weather and others. :)

  6. Ashley

    I hear you, it’s been a LONG winter! Such a cute picture of your little guy by the way, he’s getting so big!

  7. Katie

    This is my dream- glad you have such a great neighborhood! Also, LOVE the new (maybe not new, I’m behind in my blog reading lately) blog look!

  8. Annie

    Yes! That is living in my opinion. I am finding the same to be true (and cannot believe how cold it is today here in the twin cities!!). Looking forward to hot & muggy ; )


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