Published: 15th December 2008
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Moving to a new neighborhood can be both an exciting and intimidating time in a person's life. It is exciting because relocating to a new place brings to mind a fresh start with different surroundings, new friends, and hopefully a better life. It is intimidating precisely because everything will be new and hence, different. It can also be a very stressful and tiring time. If you have new neighbors moving into your neighborhood, it would be a great idea to help make them feel welcome and at home. A really convenient way to welcome a new family is through a gift basket from

Before you actually walk into your neighbor's new home, you must have your "Welcome to the Neighborhood" gift basket. This specific type of basket should contain items that would help your new neighbors settle into their new home at the soonest possible time.

It usually takes a while for people moving to unpack and have everything in order. Their kitchen appliances and utensils might be in disarray for a while and they might have to resort to the more expensive option of ordering take-out or even eating at restaurants for a few days. One of the most helpful and useful types of gift baskets that you can give them would be picnic-style gift basket that would allow them to still eat home-cooked meals. Items to include in this type of gift basket would be paper plates, tissue paper, plastic utensils, cups, mugs, bowls, fruits, snacks, vegetables, bread, muffins, pastries, and ready-to-cook meals.

If your new neighbors are from out of town, they would definitely appreciate a gift basket that would help them become more familiar with the area. Possible items to include in this gift basket would be a travel guide that highlights places of interest and importance, a map of the city or the area, a list of emergency numbers (hospital, police, fire station, and churches), food or products native to the area, snacks, pastries and restaurant locations.

If your new neighbors have children, make sure to include items in the gift basket that are especially for them. Add in some toys, crayons, books or videos about the area, gift certificates to the theater or the local skating rink, burgers and fries, chocolates, candies, potato chips and other snack items.

Welcoming your new neighbors by giving them a 'Welcome to the Neighborhood' gift basket is a wonderful way to establish a friendship with them. By doing so, you are implicitly saying that you are happy that they are a part of your neighborhood and that they can count on you for help they might need. Building good relationships in your neighborhood guarantees a healthy and happy place for you and your family to reside for many years to come.

The author, Charlie Mann, Time Magazine 2006 Man of Year, is a reporter for CNN and Fox news. He is the author of the NYT Bestsellers Built Hard, and Polar Cap Five. His latest book is How to Win Your Case In Small Claims Court Without a Lawyer from Atlantic Books.

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