Upon graduating from college, you can choose your own adventure: get a job, get more education, or get a life. Unsure of which option to choose, I began to piece together my own style of adventure. Two years and six jobs later, I am happily married and content with learning outside of the classroom while my husband, Thad, makes his way through the next level of education. Although I have gotten a job, my interest in learning to live and love well has brought me to a place where conventional career choices bear less importance.
Thus, weary of the pursuit of “getting,” we have begun to seek ways of giving–to friends, foes, colleagues, classmates, men, women, and children. We began by opening our home to others, planting a garden and sharing its wealth, reducing our impact on the planet, and reaching out to those around us. Through giving, we gained meaning, insight, inspiration, and a connection to unexpected people and places, yet there was still something missing. We were far from having a place to call home. We began to search for a place where we could give and live–a neighborly place–and in July of 2010 we moved into our new neighborhood.
I believe a neighborhood is a place where people can work, play, and love as part of a community. It is not always easy to find this–sometimes it’s nearly impossible. For some, finding this place may even involve thinking creatively and becoming a neighbor before the place where they live becomes a neighborhood. For others, finding a neighborhood may be a matter of gaining new perspectives of old places. There is much to learn about the art of loving locally and as I continue on the journey of becoming a good neighbor, I am eager to share the discoveries, challenges, and surprises of the neighborly way of life.