A hole lot of trouble to be a good neighbor

My neighbor’s son got it in his head that he needed to dig a hole over the weekend.  I have no idea why.  I do know that in the process, he found a troublesome wire. He promptly removed a four-foot section of it thus plunging my house into internet, phone and cable silence.

Trust me, I have many good ideas where to put that shovel, but I’ll suppress my anger and frustration in the effort to be a “good neighbor.”

I seem to do that a lot.  I want to ask the kid, a fourteen or fifteen year old boy to stop hanging out with his friends in his side yard, swearing and setting things aflame when my eight-year old and four-year old want to play in our adjacent back yard. (FYI – We have a corner lot.) Instead, I take the kids inside and we talk about why it might not be such a good idea to make a fire that reaches the eaves.  When the boy and his friends break out the B-B gun for target practice, the kids and I go inside, close the blinds and hope the birds and squirrels find safety.  When he takes the riding lawnmower for a daily joy-ride – his habit of the last six years – I cry for the noise and air pollution it creates.  When the kids start coughing and cover their ears we go inside.

I don’t know what to do.  The pre-kid me would have confronted the parents and the son about the repeated infringements onto my property line since their side yard is rather narrow.  The hole straddles the line and utility easement. I would be within my rights to lodge a formal complaint, but over the years, I’ve learned such confrontations rarely end well.

Besides I like our neighbors. The same kid who cut the internet line is also known to hop on the riding mower and help pick up leaves in the fall or mow the back yard when it is over 100 degrees and hubby is toiling in the front yard with the push mower.  The situation is maddening, especially when I couldn’t find solace in Pintrist, Tap Fish  or News of the Weird.  I’m glad Verizon installed a temporary line so our outage lasted only forty-eight hours.

A fence seems so…. aggressive, so final.  Besides, he could still dig a hole on the other side and unleash just as much chaos.  So I ask you, dear readers, what, if anything, would you do if these were your neighbors?

How do they get so much done?

Every day or week that goes by without my posting a new blog, my mailbox fills with announcements of a new blog post by one of the many people I follow.  Several of my favorites find the humor in parenting and the surprising reality of being a stay at home mom.  They hit home and make me smile.  They also make me green with envy. How do these women find time to blog on a regular basis?

Suburban Snapshots details Brenna’s unexpected parenthood journey. And it’s freakin’ hilarious.  Most moms will probably wet their pants (a side effect of childbirth) the rest of you can simply enjoy learning how having a toddler is like being at a frat party.  I am in awe that her parenting brain works well enough to be witty. I’m not sure what happened to my brain.  I think it slunk off in shame during an endless game of Chutes and Ladders.

I am also utterly impressed with Amber of Parenting, Illustrated with Crappy Pictures.  For one thing, her art skills are superior to mine. After hours spent at the kitchen table with paper, crayons, markers and pencils, I end up with a beautiful refrigerator (the kids’ pictures) and a bunch of paper for the recycling (my efforts). I love the mix of humor and heart, but most of all I love knowing that I’m not the only one with the “five-hour rule.”

When I read these bloggers in particular, I feel better about neglecting the housework. I’m inept at it anyway. As for the kids letting me have a chance to read, well, thank goodness for bloggers who know how to make a site look good. The kids love the pictures, but my 8 yr old thinks Amber should hire her to do the illustrations.

I would love to blog about important stuff (see the half finished blogs on tunnel tolls and ultrasounds), or even the everyday stuff (Legos) and produce something on a more regular basis.  But I don’t.  I like my sleep, my TV and playing tapfish. My kids can play nicely on their own for hours, but once the computer comes out, they hang all over me, desperate and clingy.  They are jealous of the laptop. Just as I am jealous of those parents who can write a book, or a blog or even just have clean floors.  My hat off to those superheros among us.

Oh – and if you know of anyone else I should add to my regularly scheduled blog reading list, let me know.  I could use a few more ways to waste time.