When I think back to my childhood there is one show that stands out among the rest. Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood was the show I would watch right before I headed out the door to play. I can still remember all of the characters, and most importantly, all of the values he would instill. I truly believe that part of my love for all things creative was fostered through watching Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood. I love sharing the old shows and the new Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood with my own boys and the shows continue to be inspirational.
So, when I was asked to participate in a initiative to give back and to get to know those around us better all in the name of being a better neighbor, I was on board 100%! You see, I started something this summer in order to connect the generations of our family. My grandmother, who is 91, is still around and is literally our neighbor. She lives only 3 houses away from us and I started to feel guilty about the fact that we had all of this history right in front of us and the boys never saw her. Sure, we are all busy, but life is short and what a treasure it is to have someone a short walk away that has lived through major wars and The Great Depression. She still has ration booklets and has outlived most of her siblings at this point. What a rare opportunity we have to allow our sons to be a part of her life. We are blessed.
So, I tried to commit at least 15 minutes, one day a week this summer to visit with Nanny. I didn’t want to overwhelm her. What I found is that she never wanted us to leave and the boys walked away with more knowledge than I could ever have hoped to give them. I also have realized that I laugh a lot when I am around her which is good for the soul. What a fun person she is!
After a conversation I had with Nanny about Nutella, I decided it would be fun for us to take her a special treat. Last week we surprised Nanny with Nutella and I’m pretty sure she is a new fan! I got so much joy out of watching her open the jar, peel back that gold foil and take a big sniff.
“Mmm. If this tastes as good as it smells I’m going to love it!” she told us as she dipped her finger in and scooped out a hunk.
Just this afternoon I spotted her out in the field walking. I jumped out of my car to run and see her quickly. It was extremely cold as the temperature was lurking around 28 degrees. She just told me how beautiful I looked, hugged me and then said I needed to get on heavier clothes. Man, I love her. I love her encouragement. I love how she put those plastic bags on our heads so we wouldn’t catch cold when we were little. I love her for sharing how much she loves her husband. I love her for sharing the love of God.
So, here’s my challenge to you. Go out and be neighborly! Maybe it just means taking your neighbor fresh cut flowers or maybe it is as simple as introducing yourself to the neighbors you’ve never met. Whatever it is, let’s brighten other’s days together. Join in with me on the #BeMyNeighbor movement.
Once you’ve had fun with your neighborly ways, we want you to come share them during our #BeMyNeighbor Twitter Party on Wednesday, November 19th at 2pm ET. Don’t forget to bring pictures. We LOVE pictures! See you soon 🙂