Photo: North Charleston via Flickr

When shopping for your dream home you look for the following:

Spacious kitchen with solid surfaces

Usable yard space for the pets and kids to frolic in

Garage parking…because snow sucks

at least two bathrooms

Most importantly, kick ass neighbors!

It’s easy to skim over that last one, but really good neighbors are worth their weight in gold especially when you have kids.  You help each other, lean on each other, bitch to each other about the weather, husbands and whatever else standing on the property line and even if you aren’t super-besties you value them…a lot.

We have these golden humans living next door to us.  They moved into the neighborhood a few years back.  I’ll never forget the day.  It was August and we heard the next door neighbors were in and they had kids who were just about our kids age.  It was like Christmas morning I swear!  I’m sure they were terrified of us upon first glance however.  My hubs and I had been out the night before and were so hungover it was a miracle they didn’t run right back to the U Haul after taking one look at us.  Lucky for us they didn’t run away.  Five years later we are each other’s go-to’s.

When one of us leaves town, the other is there to feed the cats, watch the house (with the exception of the one year I did a crap job and they actually got robbed- but never mind that) water the plants and get the mail.  If we get into a pickle and can’t make school pick up, the neighbor mama is there to drag the herd of kids back to home base.  My neighbor’s mother who lives clear across the country is actually one of my BFF’s and I probably look forward to her coming into town just as much as they do.  We celebrate Hanukkah with them and they decorate our Christmas tree and hunt for plastic Easter eggs in the yard come spring. My Christian self has learned what snacks their kids can eat during Passover and which are no-nos.

We feed one another’s kids, drink wine on the porch and bring each other gifts from our travels.  Neither of us has family in the immediate area, so we fill in for one another and it is priceless relationship.  Here in the land of motherhood you really never know when chaos is going to slap you upside the head and all of the sudden you are dependent on you neighbor in shining armor.  I’ll give you yet one more prime example of why awesome neighbors are the bomb dot com.

Today my kids were home with the dreaded stomach flu.  I was pulling back into my driveway with soup and bread and there I see my next door neighbor getting ready to get her yard work on!  Within ten minutes the phone rings.

“Kristin, it’s me K.  I was just about to suck up some leaves in the front yard and… well…. my hair is stuck in the leaf blower.  I need you.”

She sounded so cool, calm and collected, how I have no idea.  Had the roles been switched I would have been screaming my head off ( I mean had it not been attached to a leaf blower that is.)  Out of the house I raced and over to her front porch where my cute, little, curly haired friend sat on the front stoop with glossy locks spun into the leaf blower all the way to her scalp.  Considering K is about five feet tall and one hundred pounds soaking wet you can imagine how this looked.  The leaf blower was nearly the size of her!  Sure enough she was not kidding.  Her hair was cranked up in there gnat’s arse.  There was no calling on her hubs considering he was on business across the Pacific (lucky bastard.)  So she sat ever so still as our neighbors drive on by and we worked that hair out piece by piece.  I won’t say it was a perfect job.  She definitely is missing some strands, but at least we didn’t have to call the EMT and load her and her leaf blower into the back!

So you see you need those golden neighbors over all other real estate perks.  You never know when you will accidentally get your head jammed in a leaf blower and might need your girl to run out of the house and yank it free!