Monday, June 29, 2009

Good Neighbors Are Worth Their Weight in Ice Cream

The following essay was my entry for the Edy's Slow Churned Neighborhood Salute.
I'm so excited to be a grand prize winner, which means I'm one of 1,500
people across the country who get to throw an ice cream party for their
neighbors courtesy of Edy's. Hooray for free ice cream!

August 2003, my husband and I bought our first house, located in the
Lakemont neighborhood of Raleigh, N.C. Over the next few years, we had
our first child and became good friends with our neighbors. Our
neighborhood group quickly became our community support network � the
people who brought dinner when you'd had a family illness, watched your
kids in a pinch, offered hand-me-downs and holiday treats, donated to
your causes, cheered your talents, celebrated your successes and
mourned your losses.

In July 2007, we sold our house in Lakemont
to move to Greensboro for a great job opportunity. We didn't want to
leave Raleigh, but felt like it was the right decision for our family.
Long story short, over the next 11 months, the job opportunity fell
apart, we had our second child, my husband found a new job in Raleigh,
we sold our house in Greensboro, moved in with my parents for two
months, bought a house back in Lakemont (a few streets over from our
first home) and moved back to Raleigh in June 2008. Phew.

our friends from the neighborhood showed up in the front yard of our
new house at the same time that the moving truck pulled up to the curb,
we knew we'd made the right decision to return. It was an exhausting
year � both emotionally and physically � but we felt that coming back
to Lakemont was coming home for us, returning to our "family."

neighborhood isn't fancy, the houses aren't glamorous, the residents
aren't making millions. But we have a wealth of community that I think
is rare in a time when people are so transient and keeping up with the
Joneses is more about the car you drive than about what sort of help
the Joneses might need.

We�d love to host an Edy�s party to say
thank you to all our friends and neighbors, new and old, and to
celebrate how wonderful they are � they�re what makes Lakemont home for

Crossposted at Junius & Pippi Take the Cake. When she's not blogging, Cyndi can be found clearing out space in her freezer for 15 quarts of ice cream. And thanks to Spry on the Wall for her comment, which led to the title of this post.

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