On Halloween night, during a lull in the action at our current home, I loaded Milo into the car. We were just going to drive by our new home (yes, this home!) to see how many trick-or-treaters that neighborhood gets. Then I noticed several future neighbors’ lights on. My stomach felt a little nervous… Introvertedness and a feeling that I’m always awkward in conversations I haven’t had the opportunity to rehearse… I wasn’t going to let that win.
With Cookie Monster on my hip, we knocked on two doors and met two very kind neighbors. Mary and Tori. I was glad to have introduced myself to these neighbors. But I regret to tell you I’m not sure I know many names of the neighbors besides us and across from us at our current home.
It’s a pretty big regret, honestly. By not being more intentional about getting to know our neighbors, we’ve missed opportunities for friendship. We’ve lost out on conversations we could have had about Safe Families and adoption and the kids who have come into our home. We’ve diluted many of our relationships down to a “Hey, how’s it going?” and “Chilly out today, huh?”
It is quite convenient that we will be moving to our new home right before the holidays. We are excited to be intentional about quickly and directly introducing ourselves to our neighbors and new mail carrier. (It’s important to be friends with the mail carrier when he or she is the person your dog dislikes most.) My mind is already reeling with the ways we can do this in the least awkward way possible. Homemade cookies, boxed treats, coffee gift cards, candles, handwritten notes in greeting cards? But I don’t think it’s worth it to analyze all the options. We’re just going to do it.
I had the fun opportunity to check out Hallmark’s holiday offerings, and I was quickly drawn to the greeting cards, gift wrap, and gift trim. I bought several, because I like sprucing up the little things we give to our neighbors and community service people around the holidays. I have always wrapped a greeting card with cash or a gift card inside to give to our mail carrier. I think (hope!) it helps the card stick out and not get lost in the shuffle of other mail.
I was truly impressed by the variety of cute, contemporary gifts and holiday decor at our nearby Hallmark. And I was this close to buying a stuffed nativity set for Milo’s first Christmas. But I think he and the neighbor babies would just gnaw on them this year.
I made a little video of our experience… Though Milo doesn’t make it in any of the shots, he visited Hallmark with me and later “helped” wrap up a box of cookies and a little greeting card. I can’t wait to celebrate Christmas with him in our family this year!
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Hallmark Gold Crown, but experiences expressed here are my own.