“Ahhh mom, why do we have to walk to get lunch?”

June 8, 2009 at 1:30 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , )

It is the first week since school let out and let the whining begin!  “I’m hungry.” “Can I have a friend over to hang out? ” “When can we go to the pool?” I know children are inquisitive but its amazing how they only hear the answers they want to hear and otherwise they just keep asking, hoping they will get a different answer!  Or is it just my two boys who are so persistant?

We are blessed to live in one of Denver’s best family neighborhoods.  Some call it Observatory Park or University Park ,but technically, my street, south Jackson Street between Iliff and Yale, is part of University Gardens and is, in my mind, a little piece of paradise in the city. It is a tree-lined stretch of street with no cut through side strees covered with homes on large lots.  There are no sidewalks, but in the early summer we have rows of orange poppies and in the heat of August, the huge trees give a welcome respite from the heat. So it is a popular street for walkers, runners and bikers. The weather always seems better here than anywhere else in the metro area. We are just 10 minutes from Downtown Denver, 10 minutes to the Denver Tech Center and right near the University of Denver. I truly believe it is a slice of heavan on earth!

I was working from home  with my sons, who are now out of school for the summer, hanging out with me. I thought it would do us all good to take a break at lunch and go for a walk.  Pulling an eleven year old away from video games and a 13 year old away from whatever project he was building in the garage is not an easy task to start with, but to go for a walk to a new local restaurant was really a challenge!  They couldn’t understand why I wouldn’t just drive ‘thru’ and bring it home!

We left the suburbs because everything was all about driving- even though we didn’t have to drive far in my old Littleton neighborhood of Southbridge, there really wasn’t a ‘walk to’ restaurant near us so we always drove, everywhere, to everything. I love living where you can walk to things.  The University neighborhood Walk Score is 75,. From my house on S. Jackson St. it is 86!  Have you checked out your Walk Score.  It is a great tool to see where things are located near an address.  Type in the address and it lets you know how close important things are like restaurants, grocery stores, schools, parks, bars, the library etc.  The scoring goes to 100.  Enter your address and see how your home scores. 

Does the 86 impress my sons?  No, but their Grandma happened to come by so she joined us on our 6 block walk to the new Pei Wei Asian Diner  off of Colorado and Buchtel Boulevard and all were impressed with the food!  One way to speak to adolescent boys is through their stomachs!  The quick stroll allowed us to enjoy one of Denver’s fabulous sunny days.  It also gave my oldest a chance to once AGAIN make an argument about why he should be allowed to adopt snakes and for me to see it had been too long since breakfast for my youngest!  That is where the whining came in! 

Full after eating Pei Wei

Full after eating Pei Wei

 It was a tasty lunch.  My boys wolfed that food down so fast there was hardly time for the steam to dissipate from the dish.  Even better, Grandma picked up the check!  It was a nice inter-generational activity for all of us.  Pei Wei opened quietly in April  at this location, but seems busy everytime I have driven by. Its always good to have new development in a neighborhood and we wish them well.

On the walk home, everyone was in a much better mood, (amazing what a full stomach will do for your attitude.) Not one of us whined! I was thrilled, not just because I loved my sesame chicken, but because, for me that is what life is about,  living in a neighborhood where you can walk to what you need, on a block with fabulous neighbors surrounded by the beauty of nature. It was fun to catch up with Grandma and even more fun to spend the time with my boys. So  a short walk, a little lunch and the whining was gone!  I couldn’t have done that in my old home in the suburbs, that’s for sure. Your home needs to function to fit your life, the neighborhood needs to meet your needs.  If it doesn’t, now is a great time to find one that does!  Rates are incredilby low. Denver is touted as having made the turn around.  I provide the 5 Star Advantage  you need to help you find the area that fits your lifestyle as well as one that is most likely to improve in value! Who knows, it maybe just a short walk away!I promise to keep the whining to a minium.

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