Love Your Neighbors
What’s your neighbor’s name? How about on the other side? When did you last invite them over or drop off the extra cookies you made? No matter your religion, loving your neighbors means being part of a community – and world – that cares.
I love baking, but between Tim and I, we cannot eat the large batches of desserts I occasionally make, so we give half the batch of any dessert to Tim’s colleagues (who live in the same RV park). We only expect a clean tupperware container back from them and we simply enjoy brightening their days. It feels good to be kind whether through random acts of kindness or simple gestures to friends.
Living in an RV park means our neighbors – all around – frequently come and go. Some are here to stay and others hang around for a mere day or two. Tim and I are set up in a nice, secluded area of the park. We have a beautiful view, in part thanks to having no neighbors on one side. The privacy is awesome!
Recently, a big RV pulled up and set up camp (literally) next door. The truck hauling it was huge and parked itself liberally in the middle of the two lots, about 5 feet away from our front door. I was like, “Nice, jerk! Thanks a lot!” in my head, “Leave soon cause we don’t want you here!” I hoped our dog would pee on their truck tire and figured I should park too close to their truck since they were taking up more than their share of space. I avoided our new neighbors and was “not a happy camper.” (I know this makes me sound like a horrible person.)
The next day, Tim mentioned he had met one of the new neighbors that morning on his way out. She was in her early 60s, was very friendly and liked the tiny house. I felt slightly bad for my ill wishes, but carried on.
While taking our pup out for a walk the next day, our new neighbor approached me and struck up a conversation. She and her partner, a three time cancer survivor whose health was failing, were traveling the country while they still could. To my surprise, this woman was utterly lovely and adventurous. A dog mom herself, she gave me advice on puppy rearing, since I mentioned this was a new experience for me. She even gave me dog treats for our pup!
We talked about Tim’s and my upcoming mini moon. We would be making our way through her home state, so I asked for recommendations on specific places to go. I was pleasantly surprised to feel a bit bummed that they would be staying for only one more day. It would have been nice to have such pleasant neighbors for a little longer after all. My previously negative and uncaring thoughts made me feel doubly ashamed.
The next morning, upon taking our dog out, I discovered a note taped to our door with a list of sites to see on our mini moon and wishing us a very happy life together. How sweet! Our neighbors would be taking off shortly, so I whipped up a batch of homemade muffins and offered them as a parting gift and “thank you.” It felt wonderful to convey that the exchange was mutual.
This simple interaction was a sincere reminder to me of what being a kind human means. We always think we are striving to be better people, yet we occasionally flip off the bad driver passing us, are overly annoyed and curt when we have to wait “too long” in the grocery line, and we forget the smallest acts mean the most, whether they are directed at old friends, family, or a strangely wonderful new neighbor.
My challenge to you is this: If you don’t know your neighbors, knock on their doors and introduce yourself. If you need to offer them cookies to feel less awkward about it, make some. If you already know your neighbors (even if you haven’t had great interactions in the past), bake them something, shovel their driveway if you live somewhere cold, or bring their newspaper to their door.
Do something kind. Love your neighbors and make your home and our world a little bit better.
Follow Our Journey At
We use Personal Capital to track our net worth. We simply connect our assets and it tracks everything for us! Our net worth, cash flow, budget, investment fees, retirement planner, and more are tracked through this site. It’s completely free too! Sign up for free and receive $20 when you open an account!