Nicki Stockdale (left), her two boys and Cassie Payne and her daughter take a walk towards Burke Park.

by Dave Warner

Niki Stockdale is relatively new to Little Falls, having only moved here five years ago from San Diego. Her husband works on the wind turbines that you see in the area, and they felt it was a lot cheaper to live here, plus there were four seasons that her family could enjoy, so they decided to stay.

She said, “I do like the snow, but probably not nine months of it.”

Stockdale is a stay-at-home mom who homeschools her children and is currently pregnant with her fourth, but she has come up with an interesting idea about how to deal with the ‘locked in the house too long’ feeling that many are starting to feel.

She’s calling it the Neighborhood Window Watch, and she is encouraging everyone to get involved. The idea is that every few days, there will be a ‘theme’ for decorating the windows in your house that face out to the sidewalks. On March 26th, it’s encouraging words, March 29th, it’s flowers, April 1st is jokes, April 4th is easter eggs, and April 7th is animals.

A friend of hers in Colorado gave her the idea. “It was the first I had heard of it, so she sent me some information and I thought, my neighborhood would benefit from this so much!”

She felt that with a lot more people indoors now, it would be fantastic. “We have so many beautiful windows here in town, we can just spruce them up and get kids excited.”

Stockdale said that the window displays will help make people feel encouraged and feel safe. “I know a lot of moms are struggling with homeschooling right now and trying to find things to do, so this kind of gives them a way to get outside and keep the kids entertained, as well as the parents.”

She wants people to get really creative with their windows. In her case, she got some dry erase markers, and is thinking of painting on the windows or making crafts to display in them.

“Make the display as big or as bold as you want, even add some lights to it,” she said.

Stockdale said that probably the best viewing time would be 9 am until 6 pm each day, but that is only a suggestion.

“I just want people to have fun and be excited about it. I know that the kids are really having a hard time being indoors more now, and I want them to see bright colors, words of encouragement, jokes, anything” she said.