What’s New in the Neighborhood?

We have lived in the same house for 30 years. When we moved in, there were only a few young families, and the elderly couple across the street was so excited to have “nice, young family” move in. The elderly couple have both died, and until a year or so age, the neighborhood was mainly full of middle aged couples whose children had grown and moved away.

Many houses have changed hands lately, and this week I counted seven new families on our block, each having or about to have a new baby. There are many more older children as well. Now we are the older couple welcoming “nice, young families” to the neighborhood.  It is good to see and hear children again. We have to be hypervigilant backing out of the driveway so no one gets run over. It is the price we pay for progress, I guess.

The cultural  makeup has changed, too. When we moved in, most of our neighbors were Roman Catholics, and many were of Czech heritage.  Most were people whose families had lives in the area for several generations. Three families were even related to one another.  That is completely different now, and our neighbors are a mix of locals and new people, and they are far less public about their religious views.

How has your neighborhood changed since you moved in? If you have recently moved, how is your new neighborhood different than your old one?

27 thoughts on “What’s New in the Neighborhood?”

  1. We moved into our house in 2002, we were part of a wave of new residents, some with small children, some (like us) to have them in the next couple of years. Two of those families have since moved away (one due to the economics of the 2008-09 downturn, one because they needed more space for their growing family). One house just south of us has turned over a couple of times since we moved in and now has a lovely family of three (the two owners before were both single people who traveled a lot). Next door neighbors also moved out with changing family circumstances (which was a bummer because their daughter was one of the only other girls on the block, and a good friend of my daughter’s) – new neighbors have been there I think five years. A couple other houses have turned over from one family with kids to a different family with slightly younger kids. Somehow we have become the “established” neighbors…we are not the sort of block that has regular parties or spends a lot of time socializing (except for a few families with kids of more similar age) – but folks are friendly and we look out for each other.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    My neighborhood is seeing a change similar to Renee’s neighborhood. We have now lived here 22 years. The first 17 years only one house changed owners, a record of extraordinary stability. The last 5 years I can count 10-12 homes which brought new owners, one of them two houses down. Some of the homes are going to young families. These houses were built in the mid-70s, that black hole of bad building practices. There are several original owners still in their homes.

    We now hear young children playing in the neighboring yards which is wonderful to my ears. However, yesterday Difficult New Neighbor to the South completed the large and unsightly fence I complained about a week or so ago. Acceptance is now my goal.

    Remember, Steve, soon to be from St Paul, is changing neighborhoods today or tomorrow. I think he said tomorrow is his first official day back in St. Paul

    Liked by 3 people

      1. ill bet you are both a little anxious about the move.
        hope it all goes smoothly ljb.
        he will be all steelesd in 100 days form now whn you are headuing back up.
        thoughts with you both

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Don’t blame you, ljb. Be as gentle with yourself as you possibly can, try to stay in the moment, and don’t forget to breathe.

          Liked by 2 people

  3. Up in Robbinsdale around the time we moved to Winona (3 years ago this month), there was a major shift in the houses closest to us, and we didn’t get to know the new neighbors before we moved. Here, over half the people on our block have been here a long time – there was an alley party last summer and we got to meet most of the current neighbors, which was really nice. For this reason, it’s nice to have an alley again – hope it happens again, as there is at least one new family this summer.

    I relate to those of you who are welcoming the sound of kids playing out in your neighborhood. There is one family kitty corner from our corner with three kids from maybe 7-14 yrs old, and I love to hear them.

    Renee – in R’dale we got in the habit of backing into our garage (a double so it was easy) – at least when there was no traffic or kids around, so that I wouldn’t have to blindly back out. This was also because of a fairly steep driveway (garage at basement level), so it helped in winter.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. When we moved into the house we currently live in in 1979, most of the other homes on our block were owner occupied, and all but one the houses were older homes. Some were families with school aged children, some were older couples whose adult children had flown the coop, but all had lived here for years. Though our house was built in 1889, we are only the third owners of it.

    When the old folks started dying off on the opposite side of the street, younger families moved in, but surprisingly few kids on the block (with the notable exception of the next door clan, which currently includes the great grand kids of the original owners. We’re told that they have been served with an eviction notice effective 7/31/2019.)

    The couple in the house east of us will be closing on their house this week, they are moving to a townhouse in Colombia Heights after ten years as our neighbors; we’ll miss them. The new owners are a young couple, first time buyers; we’re keeping our fingers crossed.

    Lois and Warren, two doors down to the west are 87 and 90 years old, respectively; they have lived there more than fifty years. Realistically, it’s only a matter of time before we’ll see some major changes in our immediate vicinity. Being no young whippersnapper myself, I don’t anticipate seeing much change here in my lifetime.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Hi-
    Out here in the countryside the term “neighborhood” is kinda flexible.
    We live on a dead-end road. There are 3 mailboxes out on the highway that we use as reference points.
    There used to be just two of us on this road. And a tower site that has changed hands multiple times. Now there are two tower sites. They’re part of the neighborhood.
    Back in the 1960’s my parents sold off some land to a doctor who built a house. Randy and Joanne Rovelstad built their house and made the third mailbox.
    I was dating Kelly in 1987 and one winter night with the roads slick with freezing drizzle, I was coming home (slowly) from a date and there were flashing lights way behind me. Also traveling slowly.
    Flashing lights ahead of me revealed one of the original homes had burned down. Water heater explosion. The one remaining bachelor farmer living there was not hurt but he moved into town. We left the third mailbox really, “just because”.
    In the early ’90’s Rovelstads moved into a retirement home and our new neighbors Rick and Betty moved into their house with their kids. And, of course, for them, when Kelly and I got married, we became their new neighbors with our kids soon enough. Their daughter babysat for us.
    A few of the farm neighbors have passed away. Not many in a 6 mile radius of our farm but a few. A few more ‘city people’ have moved into the area but we’ve been pretty lucky that there hasn’t been major development this direction. Homes here and there.
    I guess I’d consider anyone with in our township a neighbor. And the whole township, plus a mile or two into neighboring townships (but not including the city of Rochester) would be our ‘Neighborhood’.
    There are housing developments I may consider in the neighborhood but I wouldn’t consider any of the people my neighbors. Seems to me, I have too have had some interaction with them in order to make them my neighbors.
    I know people in a development next door and consider *them* neighbors. But as I think about it now, the people in the next development I wouldn’t call neighbors, at least until I meet them at elections and then I can tell them ‘Oh, we’re neighbors!’
    Isn’t that interesting.

    And people that are closer to us as the crow flies, but not by road, feel less like neighbors than those who’s homes I drive by regularly. Huh.

    There’s a link to a map of Haverhill Twp 1928. We’re still in Section 28. (right under the “99”- which I don’t know what that is reference too, but it’s not an actual geological reference to anything).

    Fun post today Renee!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Forgot to add, (but I think I’ve said before) now that there are just two families living back here, we only NEED two mailboxes. But the third has always been there.
      It’s the first one you come too and it takes the brunt of the snowplow action. Neighbor Rick has kept it clean and updated and added the name “S. Lamb” to that one.
      Get it??

      Liked by 2 people

      1. There never was any actual hospital, they were just property owners. Those parcels changed hands frequently.
        Down in the SW corner was the State Hospital. That had some really beautiful buildings and was in operation until the late 1980’s.
        All have been torn down now and the site is the Federal Medical Center (prison) and a lot of public health department buildings.


  6. I’ve been in my house since 1991, so that makes me one of the old-timers now. Lots of kids have grown up that I’ve seen in this neighborhood and some of the newer families have younger kids. For many years I was the neighborhood Welcome Wagon and had parties for new families so everybody could get to know everyone else. But the last three families that moved in over the last 4 years declined having the party to meet the neighbors so I’ve kind of let that go; guess that’s not what the younger generation values. But it seems sad to me.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’m curious, VS, living on a busy street as you do, do you consider people on the opposite side of the road as neighbors, or do you think only of the people on your side of the street that way?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Very insightful PJ. Lyndale is indeed quite a barrier. In earlier years I did know some of the people across the street and we did a few things together now and then but it does seem a little bit like a different neighborhood over there.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. I don’t know that I would be comfortable meeting all of my new neighbors at a party thrown by someone I don’t know, so I think I’d decline too. When we have new neighbors move in, I introduce myself and welcome them to the neighborhood. I give them a card with Hans’ and my name, house and phone numbers, and encourage them to call if they have questions or need help in any way. Hans is far more social than I am, so he goes out of his way to go outside and visit when he sees someone outside doing yard work or whatever. I would feel really weird doing that.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Actually for 20 of these years the parties have worked out great. A casual potluck affair — people come over, we all have name tags and then the new neighbors leave with a list of everybody’s name and address and phone number and email. I will say that my new neighbors to the north (who also declined a party) have been to a couple of my social functions and they are very nice and we’re doing just fine.

        Liked by 3 people

  7. When I first bought my house the family across the street to the north had a twelve-year-old girl and a nine-year-old boy, and two older girls. The parents had been in the neighborhood since the 60’s. Eventually the parents divorced, the wife moved away, the boy who had been nine when I moved in died by suicide, the husband remarried, the girls all married and moved out. Not necessarily in that order. Last year the house was sold to a young couple with a little girl.

    I sometimes think of what it was like thirty years ago and have a reflexive thought that those were happier times. But for the couple in that house now, perhaps these are their happier times.

    Liked by 3 people

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