We moved next to Jennine and her family almost fifteen years ago. While I don't really remember our first introductions, I do know that we hit it off, and it wasn't long before we were spending time together as neighbors and friends.
Jennine had spoken with our other neighbors, small talk here and there, but no one really hung out together on a regular basis. Jennine and I started doing more and more together, and we had the idea of bringing the whole cul-de-sac together.
It was Memorial Day weekend, 2007, that I think really started bringing our neighborhood together. Jennine was almost a year out from her original breast cancer diagnosis. Little E was eight months old. Our other neighbor had an almost two year old and another neighbor had a four month old and an almost two year old. It was time to bring these younguns and adults together.
So between our two houses, Jennine and I planned a cookout, set up tables and chairs, and invited our neighbors to join us that Memorial Day. Ten years later we've had lots of neighborly gatherings: too many game nights to count, holiday potlucks, New Year's Eve parties, girls' nights out with the moms, holiday cookie decorating, and "just because" cookouts.
Memorial Day Cookout, May 2007
Jennine, the neighbors, and Little E