I Love My (New)Town

What I've learned in the first few weeks of living in our new home in Sandy Hook.

My family decorated our new house in Sandy Hook to welcome us home. That's my wife Callie and our son Emmett, 20 months. We've got a baby girl on the way, too!
My family decorated our new house in Sandy Hook to welcome us home. That's my wife Callie and our son Emmett, 20 months. We've got a baby girl on the way, too!
I was driving home along Queen Street the other night when something spectacular caught my eye. It was just so great that I had to turn around and get a closer look, to see if this was for real.

It was a wooden play house, complete with a front porch, placed at the end of a driveway. It even had a mailbox and, inside, shelves and a sink.

Best of all, it was available for free!

I knocked on the front door of the home and was greeted by an older gentleman who smiled as he opened the door. The tiny house with tons of character had brought his grandchildren many years of fond memories, but they have outgrown it, he said.

I told him how my 20-month-old son would absolutely love the house, and that it would be a perfect addition to the backyard of our new home in Sandy Hook.

Only one problem: it was too big to fit in my car. So I asked if he could hold it for me until I came back with a truck in about an hour. He obliged, and so I headed out in search of a truck.

I called my step-dad who drives a pick-up and lives on South Main Street. No luck. My uncle in Shady Rest has a truck. No answer.

Oh no, I thought. I need a truck now!

So there I was walking out of the People's Bank branch in the Big Y parking lot when I saw a guy in a pick-up truck. A total stranger, and his dog in the front passenger seat.

"Hey, I'll give you $20 if you help me move something to my house," I said.

He looked at me, a little taken aback at first, and then said, "Sure."

We drove to Queen Street, loaded the play house into his truck and brought it to my place. I gave him the cash and said I'll see you around town. (He lives up the road near Cherry Street, in a house that his father was born in.)

Seeing my son's excitement when he saw the house for the first time was something money can't buy.

A day earlier I was playing dodgeball at Newtown Youth Academy with about 20 residents ranging in age from about 16 to 50. We played for more than an hour and it was a blast.

Good, clean fun and great exercise, too (I was sore for nearly three days!). I'll be back this coming week.

It's been less than two weeks since my wife and I and our son moved into our first home, about a mile from the heart of Sandy Hook Village. As we were unpacking the truck, a few neighbors stopped to welcome us and extend an open invite to come by if we need a tool or anything else.

Those gestures made me feel even better about the town that I have always loved but now can call home.

While I grew up in nearby Fairfield, my family has lived in Sandy Hook for more than 40 years and I've been coming here for as long as I've been alive (31 years next month). 

So what have I learned in these first few weeks as a resident of this town?

What you likely already know — that this town, and the people that bring it to life, are special. That I am proud to call Sandy Hook my home. And that I look forward to seeing you around town!
Gary Jeanfaivre July 29, 2013 at 02:49 PM
Thanks, all. I'm working from Village Perk most days so stop by and say hi if you're around. I'm there right now!
Claudia Cooper July 29, 2013 at 07:50 PM
What a sweet story.... Welcome to Newtown, friend.
Tony July 29, 2013 at 11:21 PM
Paid advertisement....LOL.
Jessica July 30, 2013 at 07:59 AM
Tony it must be tiring being so negative about EVERYTHING! This was a heartwarming story. Not everyone dislikes Newtown as it seems you do from all the comments you make on practically every Patch story.
Jackie August 01, 2013 at 11:57 PM
We just moved to Sandy Hook too! Everyone we have met has been so kind! Several of our neighbors came by to welcome us to the neighborhood shortly after we moved in. We love it here so far! I told someone recently that it's like being in the South only with a different accent. I'm sure the winters will be colder too!


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