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Become #locallegends in Your Neighborhood This Summer

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I am embarrassed to admit that I recently realized that after 5 years of living in the same house, I still don't know the names of the family living across the street.  A firetruck pulled up in front of their house while they were at work and, even though I wanted to be, I was no help.  New neighbors just moved in to our neighborhood, and even though they came over to help my husband move some things in the yard, I don't know their names either!

This is very different than the greeting my brother's family received when moving into their neighborhood.  They have amazing neighbors who welcomed them into the neighborhood with a list of local contacts, important things they needed to know (like when is trash day), and an open invitation to come over and make use of their play equipment.  On Easter, they secretly left an Easter basket full of goodies on their front porch!

I would like to say I welcomed our new neighbors in this same way, but I didn't.  And that's a problem!  I want to be friendly with my neighbors, but I get busy and forget to make time to talk with people who are literally steps away from my front door.

So this summer, my goal is to get better acquainted with the families living in my neighborhood.  Here are some of my ideas on how to get everyone in the neighborhood hanging out together like #locallegends!

1.  Make Homemade Ice Cream.  I remember as a kid that summer visits to my grandparents nearly always included homemade ice cream.  My grandparents had a hand-crank machine and if you wanted ice cream you had to take a turn.  While I was on Pinterest I found a simple recipe for making ice cream in a mason jar.  It would be so fun to have everyone shake up their own and then send it home with them in a mason jar!

"Treat Day" Tee from Gymboree"Treat Day" from Gymboree (Affiliate Link)

2.  Neighborhood Picnic.  We have a large yard so there is plenty of room for us to set out tables, spread out some blankets and host a neighborhood picnic.  It's also a great time for neighbors to make up some new recipes they've been wanting to try or share some of their trusted favorites.  Ice down a few watermelons for dessert and everyone should go home with a happy tummy!

"Romper Around" from Gymboree
"Romper Around" from Gymboree (Affiliate Link)

3.  Swim Party.  One the girls in our neighborhood has discovered that we have a kiddie pool in our backyard.  She and my daughter have both enjoyed splashing around and sliding into the water.  But there's no reason we couldn't get more kids involved!  I bought a Banazai Wigglin' Water Sprinkler to lay out in the yard so there's plenty of room for all the kids in our neighborhood to run around and get wet!

"Sunset Trip" swimwear from Gymboree"Sunset Trip" from Gymboree (Affiliate Link)

4.  Sports Games.  The summer is made for being active and outdoors.  Whether it's volleyball, basketball, or baseball, this is a great time for kids and adults to get together to show off their skills--or maybe even learn some new ones!

"Sunset Stripe" outfit from Gymboree

"Sunset Stripe" from Gymboree (Affiliate Link)

5.  Neighborhood Bike Ride.  Get a group together to ride to the park or take advantage of local bike trails.  Just be sure to take into account everyone's skill level before you leave so no one gets left behind!

"Love Your Ride" tee from Gymboree
"Ride Tee" from Gymboree (Affiliate Link)

6.  Outdoor Movie.  A few years ago my husband and I (with the help of our local CMA chapter), showed the Jesus Film on the side of our house.  We invited over friends and neighbors, popped up some popcorn and watch the movie.  Not only did this encourage our neighbors to come over, it also gave us a chance to share our faith with our neighbors and answer some of the questions they had about God!

"Popcorn Tee" from Gymboree
"Popcorn Tee" from Gymboree (Affiliate Link)

7.  Share Some Lemonade.  This is probably the simplest idea of all--make lemonade and share it with your neighbors.  Try making up a big batch of lemonade and then handing it out to anyone who comes by.  Or keep a lookout for thirsty neighbors mowing their lawn or pulling weeds and make a glass up special for them.  Either way, your neighbors are sure to enjoy a refreshing drink!

"Frenchie Fan" outfit from Gymboree"Frenchie Fan" from Gymboree (Affiliate Link)

What have your #locallegends done in your neighborhood to get to know everyone?

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