It’s Not All Mary Poppins

Neighbourliness

I know I’ve talked before about how much I appreciate my neighbourhood, and how nice my neighbours are. People are happy to interact with the children, very complimentary about my skills (and patience, ha!), the chidren’s behaviour and all-round adorability. I have a teacher neighbour who’s been known to give me entire BAGS of stuff when she changes grades and won’t be needing things. (Though these things have included a heap of glue-sticks, boxes of crayons, a stack of construction paper. When don’t you need those in elementary school?? Not that I object! I am very grateful!)

I’ve had neighbours I don’t really know at all wander up the street. “Do you run a daycare? I see a lot of children here, and then there’s that stroller…” When I confess that I do indeed, this has been followed up with a donation, and not just little things: a ride-on car, a storage unit, a double stroller.

Once, I walked out onto my porch to discover a bag of stuff there. Nice, fun craft stuff and small toys. Never did find out who gave me that!

A day or two ago, a neighbour headed out her door lugging what I took to be an end table, all set to put it in the back of her truck. It looked nice, so I called across the street and said so.

“I’m taking it to the consignment shop!”

I laughed. “Not nice enough, then!” Well, no, it turned out that it wasn’t an end table, it was a toddler table with two little chairs. Her boys had outgrown it, and they were clearing out space in the basement. She pauses.

“Would you like it?”

Ha! I already knew I thought it was pretty. The chairs were adorable. The only challenge is figuring out where to put it in my small home, but for this? We’ll make it work! I said heartfelt thanks. I offered to pay for it. She declined. I offered again. Nope, no, she wouldn’t hear of it.

The kids loooove it. It’s had hours of use already.

The next day, the kids and I made a batch of cookies, decorated a paper bag, and took it over as our thank-you gift. I coached the children in their thank-yous, and Grace actually managed to speak the words, speak them audibly, AND make eye contact while doing so. I was very proud. My neighbour — how could she not?? — melted with all the cuteness. I’d call it a satisfactory transaction.

I really like this neighbourhood.

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October 5, 2012 - Posted by | Ottawa, our adoring public |

2 Comments »

  1. Man, I wish my neighbours would take the hint and bring me free stuff. I’m constantly hearing “oh, I recognize you! I see you out walking with all those kids!” and then I hear something about how I must be really patient and/or crazy. But no one ever gives me anything.

    You are indeed blessed to have such kind neighbours.

    I am, and I know it. It’s great.

    Comment by Hannah | October 5, 2012 | Reply

  2. I have a street like that! Not a fancy street by any means, but it sometimes takes a very long time to walk the dog because I get caught up talking with so many neighbours along the way.

    Your description of the cookie thank you made me tear up – either that was incredibly cute or I’m over tired. Perhaps both!

    Comment by Ali | October 5, 2012 | Reply


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