Neighbor Stories

I’m sure everyone has their stories about neighbors. I know we have our fair share – I think one day I’ll have to publish my book “Diary of a Mad White Woman,”€ haha. Anyway, the other morning we woke up and opened the blinds only to find our neighbor’€™s boy had tagged his grandparents house, shed, lawnmower, herbie curbie – the list goes on. We were like “Ohhhhh shit, someone’€™s going to get in sooooo much trouble!” There was no denying it either since he wrote his name. Patrick joked that even he was smart enough to write his sister’€™s name on the wall when he was doing this stuff as a kid. ;-) (He said the handwriting still gave him away, oops.) Since the neighbors don’€™t always come walk on that side of the house we gave them a warning when we saw them (hey, they were going to see it sooner or later anyway, right?). Needless to say, once he got home from school that afternoon he spent the rest of the day scrubbing away his ““art work.”” Hey, maybe he’€™ll be the next big graffiti artist, right?

Graffiti tagged house

Speaking of neighbors. Some nights ago Patrick and I had just gone to bed. Patrick was already more asleep than me, but I was also half dozed off when I heard a noise that woke me up. Then I heard another noise – kind of like a ““crack””. I asked Patrick “€œDid you year that?”€ He hadn’€™t because he was asleep, but now I had woken him up. It wasn’t that old house shifting kind of creaking that I’€™m used to. This was different. We both listened if there’€™d be another noise. Next thing we know we hear this giant crashing sound. I think we both just about leapt out of bed! We had no idea what it was – did our neighbor’€™s house just collapse?! We peaked out the window. Nothing. Patrick put on some shoes and walked outside around the side of the house. Nothing. So we went back to bed joking that maybe we were hallucinating. (Sniffing too much of that chemical paint remover? Haha.) The next morning we woke up and saw our “hallucination” – a tree had fallen on our neighbors shed! Eek! There are two trees (one of them made up of two large limbs) that were leaning towards ours/our neighbor’s sheds. We had been fearing that one of them could possibly fall on our shed (especially since a rather large limb had fallen from it when we first bought the house), but interestingly enough this was the other tree that had lost its twin limb. A good portion had even made it to our side and was leaning on our shed, though thankfully (for us) the neighbor’€™s shed had broken the fall. We’€™ve been so busy we weren’t sure when we were going to get to removing it from our shed, so we were excited when the neighbors knocked on the door this morning to ask if they could come in our yard to remove it. *phew* Relief!

Tree on fence

Not sure how well you can tell from the photo where the tree fell…hopefully you get the picture. Oh, and those other piles are not related to this case. We’re just stock piling our wood droppings, haha.

Posted in Our Neighborhood, Photos | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Neighbor Stories

More Gardening

Today we got busy planting those plants we bought from Lowe’s yesterday and received in the mail a few days ago…

On the left is the Spring Hill Nursery catalog “JFK” rose, on the right is the Lowe’s yellow rose whose name I can’t tell you because Patrick threw away the tag. On the left is the $7.50 rose (after 50% rebate), on the right is the $6.98 rose. I think I’m starting to feel a little bit ripped off with this catalog order. I’ve heard bad things, but I thought it would be good to give it a try nonetheless. Maybe I should have listened. All I know is that rose better make a hell of a recovery and have a hell of an amazing bloom to make up for things.


Our little garden buddy. This is the little shy boy from next door. He comes and plays in our yard while we do work, but he usually runs away when you try to have a conversation with him.

Confederate Jasmine

Our attempt at starting a vegetable garden. In the far back is the grape vine. We’ve had it sitting in our dining room bay window in the plastic container it came in for probably 2 months now. When we bought it there was one tiny leaf. Before we knew it the thing started growing and getting bigger. Now that we put it in the ground the leaves started turning white, so we’re not quite sure what that’s all about. In the middle is a zucchini plant, and in the front a tomato. My parents brought those back for us…hopefully they’ll do better adjusting than the grape has.


One of our wishes has been to get two big ol’ flower pots to put by the front steps. We’ve seen so many bungalow’s with them that we wanted some of our own. On our past searches we’ve only come across concrete or plastic containers – neither of which felt very attractive or otherwise pleasing to us. Yesterday we finally found two glazed clay pots that we liked. It’s funny how such big pots can become so small once you put them next to the big house. I’ve always been fond of my parent’s jasmine, so when we came across some at Lowe’s I decided that I wanted to put it in the big pots. We bought some little ground covers to go along with it.


Posted in Gardening, Our Bungalow, Photos | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on More Gardening

The Neighborhood and New Neighbors

The Westview neighborhood has been through a rough patch…but I truly believe that it is experiencing a renaissance. Patrick and I have noticed simply in the two months we’ve lived here/six month’s we’ve owned the house. A lot of houses remain on the market, but there’s change nonetheless. We’ll drive through the streets every so often to see what has changed, and there are still tons of houses for sale. This is such a beautiful neighborhood – it makes my heart cry ever time I drive by one of these 90-year old bungalows that has been so neglected. This neighborhood is such a gem, it just needs the right bungalow lovers to move in and provide the love and care that these historic houses need. Unfortunately the area has been ravaged by mortgage fraud and is leaving many houses empty. Our street has approximately 30 houses on it, and I wouldn’t be surprised if at least 10 of them are empty. Or at least were. Diagonally across the street from us people moved in about a month ago. Then they started renovating the house next to them (and still are). Hopefully that means someone will move in soon. The last thing we need is more mortgage fraud. Then further up the street they’re doing extensive renovations to a house as well. And just a couple of days ago we’ve had neighbors move in next door to us!

The house has been empty for as long as we know. On one hand it’s been depressing having an empty house next to us, on the other hand we’ve enjoyed the privacy it provided. A contractor started some work on it about a month and a half ago, telling us a widow and 6 (!) kids were to start renting March 1st (a little to our shock). March 1st came and went and no one moved in. The contractor informed us that they were having problems getting the power hooked back up. He told us some crazy story about the previous homeowner owing some $3,500.00 electric bill and the electric company came out and cut off the wires to the house. Supposedly they need to pay the bill before the power will get hooked back up. Why a new homeowner would have to pay a previous homeowners electric bill I don’t know, but then again I didn’t talk to the power people. In any case, the power was supposed to be turned on any day – and that was the response we received for the next month and a half. So a few days ago the neighbors moved in (to our joy a husband, wife, 88-year old g’pa and 22-year old son – not a widow with 6 kids!)…no power, no gas, no water. It’s been 4 days now, and we’ve helped them out by letting them plug an extension cord into an outlet on our porch, and by letting them fill big buckets of water from our garden faucet. I know what trouble we had getting some things hooked up here and there and how we were sweating things on moving day (like the gas), but I can at least say we had everything hooked up by the end of the night! I hope they get things sorted out soon. I’m not even quite sure how the landlord can legally let them live there under these conditions.

So it’s good to see all this action on simply our street. Interestingly enough an acquaintance recently told us his friend has been looking at buying a house in our neighborhood. Apparently he has made offers on several houses and has been out-bid each time. In a couple of instances he even offered more than the asking price. I hope he will eventually get a deal somewhere because I think it’s the kind of people we need in the neighborhood…young, ambitious individuals.

And last but not least they have also been working on some of the spaces in the little village center at the end of our street. That was very refreshing because it is such a cool, old looking building that needed a face lift. No one seems to be moving in yet, but at least they renovated it to a point where it’s not just a pathetic looking building anymore. I would absolutely love a cool little eatery to go in there, because that’s one thing we’re missing around here – places to eat.

So here’s to more improvements in our cute little gem of a neighborhood – may it continue to prosper and become the treasure that I know it is!

Posted in Our Neighborhood | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on The Neighborhood and New Neighbors