I can't say that I am too upset that my two boys missed their Valentine's parties last week. Because there is no such thing as "making valentines" here in Fullerland. The idea of mass producing 25 of anything except cookies looks like too much work for them. And I get it, I do, creativity can only be stretched so far with 4 and 6 year olds with the attention spans of one Mario Kart race. And my oldest has always been prone to give the kind of card that has some type of vicious animated robot who looks like he's going to jump out of the card and maul you (and that you simply can't draw 25 times, people). I just smile when I open his valentine box and inside the princess cards are co-mingling with these bad boys that say things like "Happy Valentine's Day-You're HIGH Voltage! .
On another note, I've found another funky house....but it is in the middle of nowhere. It was built in 1956 on 10 acres, looks like a red barn with huge windows, wide open rooms with wood beams on the ceiling, and a separate studio (see below)-in our price range but I never thought I'd say it, but no neighbors? Hmmm.....now, we aren't looking to move right now not at all, I just like to look at houses (always have). I get emails from a desperate real estate agent every week or so about another "quaint and original" property here in our county. I like to look at them. I imagine my kids running around in them, how much damage they could do but then wonder....How I could possibly give up the ability to walk down the middle of my road with cell phone in one hand and empty bottle in the other looking for milk so as to get through our bedtime ritual with little miss (I know, she's 2, no more bottles, oops)....There are plenty of neighbors/friends here who will gladly top it off, non-judgmentally smile, laugh and then ask if I've got some eggs for a last minute cookie craving they have. Here there are neighbors who dig each other out of huge snowstorms , have snow parties, scrounging up their last morsels of food to share. They don't mind if my kid is the culprit with the pink eye (oops), we keep an eye out for each other's kids (my neighbor directly across from me once caught my son trying to climb out of his bedroom window to get some toy off the roof-thank you Elena).
Yes, I really never planned on this. I've always been a fences make good neighbors policy person. And unfortunately as I look back through the years it has probably was not a great policy....as I missed getting to know Helen who was in her 90's and lived in the Cleveland Park apartment building with us for two years, she having been there for over 25. I missed getting to know neighbors who cooked the curry in one building (actually-scratch that), I missed getting to know my roommate, Emily better when I lived in Boulder only getting to be great friends right before I moved....I never wanted to get too close as I knew I would be moving soon even if I wasn't....moving soon. It's fun to look though. On this kind of property, we practically could have a cow for the milk for my empty bottle but I don't think they would be as much fun as neighbors in a snowstorm.
(The studio-yeah, it's cool.)