When I was a kid we used to have a block party every summer on my dad's old street in west Akron. I remember waiting with crazy anticipation for the city to drop off the road barricades early on Saturday morning every year. Once they finally arrived we would grab our next door neighbors and take to the street. We used to set up our own little face painting table and ride bikes up and down the road while the adults grilled up good food and music filled the neighborhood.
So you can imagine my delight when we got a flier in our new mailbox the week we moved in inviting us to our neighborhood "brick" party. And let me tell you, not much has changed since my days. There were even two little girls doing face painting (!!!) I can't tell you how happy it makes me to know Wes and Oren get to make this a part of their childhood and will carry these memories around with them for the rest of their lives.
Our next door neighbors are the sweetest little older couple whose kids are now grown and moved away. But even they still come home (bringing their own children with them now) for the brick party every year. I love that this is such a long standing tradition and that the neighborhood is so dedicated to making it happen year after year. They even do a group photo every year and keep records of all the families in attendance... I think we may have moved to Mayberry and I kind of love it.
Oren fell head over heels for the neighbor's little dog and my baby brain was on complete overload watching two of our neighbors compare their two and three month old baby girls, Juliet and Josephine. Wes made friends with a neighbor's swing set and blueberry bushes and I played in my first ever cornhole tournament. What?! I know, weird right? For a newbie I advanced three rounds! New secret hidden talent? Probably not.
I made Abby's recipe for salted, brown butter rice krispie treats as my humble offering for the day. And I think I did Abby proud because they were completely wiped out by the end of the night. Thanks, Ab!
As the evening wound down and night started to creep up around us, everyone pulled out mounds of blankets and pillows for the kids and they all piled up together in a big heap and watched a movie projected onto a neighbor's garage. The adults gathered around a bonfire nearby and passed around beer and popcorn and lots of bug spray. It was a pretty perfect night and probably the best introduction to our new neighborhood that we could have asked for. We feel so lucky to be here.