Did You Notice…?

By on 14 December, 2016 in Carole King, Holidays with 1 Comment

20161210_095009This is that time of year for review and reflection! I just wanted to acknowledge some of small things that make such a large impact on my/our quality of life. Sometimes we just don’t recognize them until we slow down or someone else points them out to us.

I received this note recently from a neighbor and it made me do just that—slow down and reflect on what’s all around me every day. My neighbor left a note in my mailbox saying:

I wanted to drop you a quick note to say thank you for taking the time to talk and stroll around your home yesterday evening… I would like to simply say thank you for preserving and caring for your home…more importantly I have found that a genuine word of appreciation for your stewardship of your home can be of great encouragement to those of us who have labored on them. So as your neighbor, I say thank you for caring. Thank you for seeing your home as not only yours but as a piece in this community that is worth preserving. And on an issue of personal taste, thank you for keeping the white paint off of that breath-taking trim work. If it was painted when you became the owner then you truly deserve the praise as a saint for seeing that project through to such admirable completion.

We had had a nice visit and chatted about paint color schemes, bungalows, old house living, neighborhood happenings, etc. I thought that was a really lovely and gracious gesture.

Every year volunteers wrap the crepe myrtles on South Capitol Parkway with lights to celebrate the holiday season. A parkway neighbor stores the lights and then the next year unpacks the lights and cords. Installing the lights is not really physically hard but it is time consuming. For those of us who live on the parkway, it actually “lights up our world” and is the signal for the holiday season celebrations to begin. Since it gets dark so early this time of year, the 5:00 traffic that cuts through the neighborhood on their way home to other neighborhoods gets to enjoy the lights. This week as the lights went on, the traffic immediately slowed down. Now, even carloads of folks cruise by at night especially to look at the lights. Even the “Tacky Lights” bus tour comes down the parkway, but I consider that a compliment.

For 30 years, Capitol Heights has sponsored a decorating contest. It’s very casual, with no rules, except to have your home decorated by a certain date and time. A certain neighborhood individual, we’ll call him Mr. K., has been coordinating this for years. He enlists several judges outside the neighborhood and on the designated evening, Mr. K. entertains them in his home. The judges drive through the neighborhood and return to Mr. K.’s home to discuss their choices and to enjoy food, drink and camaraderie.

And one of my absolute favorites is the Capitol Heights lions on Madison Avenue decorated in Christmas regalia! The lions have reigned on that spot for over a century – even before Madison Avenue was paved or Capitol Heights was incorporated into the city of Montgomery. Every day thousands of commuters travel Madison Avenue, and each year the lions magically appear decked out in holiday finery to publicly declare that the holiday season has begun. This means that it’s time to celebrate.

These are just a few happenings that are special to me and this year I wanted to take the time to acknowledge that they happen, that they are noticed and, mostly, that so many people enjoy them. So, during this holiday season if you’re in our Midtown area, these are a few things that may make your Christmas merry and bright!

Carole King (not the singer, just the hummer) enjoys midtown living from South Capitol Parkway in Capitol Heights where she has lived for 25+years. Carole has been the historic properties curator for the Landmarks Foundation that manages Old Alabama Town for 28 years and is passionate about neighborhoods, their architectural character, their people, and their preservation!

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  1. Capitol Heights is one of Montgomery’s most wonderful neighborhoods and its residents are real stallwarts. I add my thanks to that of the people quoted herein.

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