The neighbors, golden

Amie and Mr. wonderful neighbor walking the dogs

We have wonderful, interesting neighbors next-door.
-*He is very smart and funny and quiet (so quiet you forget how smart he is until he speaks up on something) He was an architect and designed his house.
-*She is a retired elementary teacher, bird watcher/cellist/tennis player/gardener/traveler- they also speak Italian and Spanish.

I want to be like Mrs. Wonderful neighbor when I grow up!

A week or two ago, the kids were running in a mob with the neighborhood kids- I was on the front porch talking to our brand-new neighbor, and I have to admit this...ignoring the herd of screaming/running children as they ran through our yard into Wonderful Neighbor's yard (which is beautifully kept with lots of native California plants).

Mr. Wonderful Neighbor came outside, and began making his shuffling way towards our house. He is so quiet and slow moving, that sometimes it is easy to imagine that he is grumpy.
I quickly walked out to meet him, feeling very guilty and in the wrong for allowing the kids to run like wild animals through his yard...

He looked me in the eyes, and the first words out of his mouth were...

"You know we have a life-time credentialed teacher living here, and we will work something out with you to help you keep the kids at home."

I realized he was referencing the recent court ruling here in California, seeming to outlaw homeschooling in our state. I can't think of many instances of me being so surprised. I can't remember my stumbling and inadequate reply, except that I thanked him from the bottom of my heart. He went on to state his opinion of it taking years for the court proceedings to run their course (the hidden smart man there again) and his hope it would all work out.

Mrs. Wonderful neighbor has always been so helpful and friendly to our kids, she has the heart of a life-long teacher and has them over all the time for sewing lessons, cooking lessons, fun, and nature walks. I've never really known what they think of our homeschooling.

Mr. Wonderful neighbor gave his approval that day, I think.