Friday, June 10, 2011
N is for Neighbors
is for Neighbors
It helps if they are good ones.
It also helps if we are good ones.
Growing up there were some very special people next door: Mr. and Mrs. Adolfs. They were older and were like a second set of Grandparents to me.
I remember Mother telling me that when we moved in beside them that Mrs. Adolfs was really worried about a family with "all those children". She told Mother that the first day she saw the laundry on the line and "all those nice white shirts" that it must be a good family. She loved all of us ever since.
MY sister and I would go to her house to have tea parties. Well, we thought they were tea parties, she would give us something to drink and she always had almond windmill cookies. (I still think of her every time I eat one.)
One day in particular we were at their house and I asked if she had any candy. She had a "milk glass" candy dish with a lid on her coffee table and she usually had it filled. Thing is, I had sneaked a peak before asking so I knew it was full. She figured that out quickly and told me that yes, she had candy, but since I had lifted the lid to check without asking first, that Icould not have any. She gave my sister a piece to eat right in front of me. I was crushed for a while, but soon I realized that she was almost a real grandma to do something like that and I loved her even more.
Her husband passed away later on, and she moved north to live with family. I wrote to her for a few years, but then lost touch. I miss those days of childhood.
You never know what influence you can have on a child. She was just a next door neighbor who opened her home and made children feel welcome.
When Steve and I moved into this neighborhood we were surrounded by elderly people. Widows and widowers were our neighbors. Our boys were the only children in our cluster of houses and they were loved.
Mr. Lindley lived next door and of all things, he had a trapeeze type swing in his garage. It was left over from his days of raising children and our boys loved it. The boys also loved his little dog Pal, and would spend much time in his yard.
Mrs. Nicholas lived across the street and she loved visits from the two little Walter boys. She would get rides to the mall and she often brought back special cookies for the boys. I remember one time the cookies were huge teddy bear cookies that were dipped in chocolate. The boys loved them.
Then there was Wilma.
Wilma moved across the street when the boys were young. Joel was still taking two naps a day. She became a part of our family immediately. She loved flowers, and some of the plants in my yard came from her, although I was told you can't say thank you for plants or they won't grow. She taught me how to make peanut brittle, although I never mastered it. She also told many stories of the years she spent with her husband and of her teaching career. She was a great friend.
Her heart and health deteriorated and she is no longer with us.
The family invited me over the night after she passed so I could pick out treasures from her home. We are blessed with many precious items that were special to her and now are special to us.
Think about your neighbors. They are a part of your lives, and can bless you tremendously. I also need to think about us. Are we the same type of neighbors?