Tuesday, January 3, 2012

My Own Front Yard

9 months ago, my family and I left the only home we ever knew, and moved literally a thousand miles away to a new city and a new state. In the grand scheme of things our transition was much smoother and our journey much shorter than some (thank you, military families). But, for us it was a big change.

It was gloomy and gray, and by our CA standards, bitterly cold (even though it was spring here.) And I had already started to think what have I done?

Each day, I sat by the big window at the front of our house and watched as my neighbors left their homes for the day. It was, I must say, a remarkably quiet street.

Until one day my neighbor from across the street was out for a walk with her two small boys, each on trikes at her side. I jumped up from the couch and bolted to the door. I called out from my front door (still in sweats and house slippers) and introduced myself. I was so desperate to meet someone new that I practically tackled her. We talked briefly, and then said goodbye as she continued on her walk.

But, later that day there was a note taped to my door. On it, she had listed parks and indoor centers and a playgroup I could attend. At the bottom she'd signed her name after, "if you need anything..." and she'd listed her phone number and email address.

Since then, she's invited me to countless gatherings with her friends, play dates, and various adventures in the city.   We've become friends.   I joined her weekly playgroup and made more friends.  I learned about all kinds of insider things to do in the city.

Her small act of kindness, transformed my experience here.

And, it inspired me, because the girl who moved here 9 months ago would likely not have taken a chance on a neighbor I barely knew if the roles had been reversed.  But, she did, and THAT has made all the difference.

So...it's a New Year, and with the New Year, I've got a resolution:  to connect with my neighbors. To build community in my neighborhood.  On this site, I'll record my "successes"  and my failures.  I'll brainstorm ideas, and ask others for advice.  

This is the Front Yard Frontier.  I'm braving the uncharted territory of my own front yard!  Won't you join me?


  1. Hi Diana! Erin told me you were working on this and I absolutely love the theme. Even though we moved only 100 miles (not 1,000!) away from my family, at times it still seems like much more. One of my goals for 2012, and maybe for the month of January, is to actually participate in the local mom's group that I signed up for in October and have been too scared to attend! Looking forward to reading more from you :)

  2. Jessica, I totally relate. Sometimes it doesn't even matter if you're in the community you grew up in, it's just about whether or not you're feeling connected and in the loop. That can be hard as a mama with small kids. I hope you enjoy the blog. We'll see what resources I can dig up : )

  3. We are all so glad you had R across your street to welcome you to Seattle. But how lucky are we that you and your family and now part of our extend friend group?! Looking forward to more fun and laughter in the new year with all of you.

    ~melanie norris

  4. So, so grateful that I happen to live across from someone who is not only amazing but who has amazing friends. Thanks for welcoming me! We should do a playdate sometime with our littles. :)