When we moved to our new house I was eager to meet our neighbors and very much hoped that there were some other children on the street similar in age to my own.
We left a wonderful cul-de-sac full of great neighbors at the old house. We still see a few of them somewhat regularly, which is a perk to not moving terribly far away! I’m grateful that we lived at the old house for the time that we did to really be able to see the gift that is having great neighbors.
It took a few weeks but we’ve met a handful of our neighbors, invited them all over to swim on Labor Day, and also ate dinner at one of their homes.
There are more kids than I had even imagined and I’m so glad.
I’ve gotten a few questions from readers and IG followers about how we made friends with our neighbors so quickly. I understand that it can be tough to make friends as an adult, and depending on the community you live in it can also be difficult to simply MEET your neighbors. So here are a few tips to help you meet or engage with your neighbors.
First, be the first to invite to a casual hang out! Most of the time I think people are nervous to be the ones to host due to fear that no one else will show up. Or they aren’t sure what the other family or neighbor likes to do. It really can be a shot in the dark but oftentimes taking the first step of hosting can get the ball rolling on bringing people out of their shell. If you have kids, a safe, low-commitment activity could be as simple as planning something that takes place in your driveway. It could be just inviting a few neighbors over for popsicles or popcorn in order to let the kids play. Have some sidewalk chalk or balls out for the kids, and that should set you up for an easy way to engage with your neighbors. If you don’t have kids, you could invite your neighbors over to play cards, help you finish off a dessert you made too much of (wink wink) or simply for a glass of wine.
Second, offer to help out if they need it. Justin is so good about telling new neighbors that has has a bunch of tools and a riding lawn mower that he is happy to lend out should anyone need it. I usually share that we have two cats and sometimes need cat sitters when we go out of town, and that’d I’d be happy to help them with anything they need if they travel.
Third, invite them over for a meal. This is when you really get to know a person or family. We love doing this and are always grateful when we are invited to another family’s home for a meal. I usually try to make something easy and crowd-pleasing for that first visit. And if they offer to bring something, let them!