Family, friends, baby showers, haircuts, banking, more friends and more hugs – that’s what this past weekend was all about! We were back in the old neighborhood for three days, and we managed to cram those days full to overflowing! I wish I could say I whipped my camera out at every opportunity, but I confess I was too busy catching up with friends to get too involved with documenting the activities! But here are a couple –
First of all – my dear Birthday Buddies –
The three of us have gathered during our birthday month (November) for the last umpteen years (we really couldn’t figure out how long it’s been!). Now that I’m on the road, any time I’m in town is a Birthday month for us – so, (not that I really want to hurry it) Happy Birthday to Connie and Bonnie and me – it was such a precious time of sharing and praying with you, dear friends!
And then there was the Baby Shower for my DIL, Abigail.
Again, being on the road has pretty much eliminated my ability to attend any showers for my grandbabies (except for Ellie who was born before we set out). Imagine my delight to be able to share in the celebration of a shower for my newest grandbaby (a boy!) due in early July. And as a bonus, Gary got to spend the afternoon with Josiah. A good afternoon for everyone! 🙂
Quick Quilt aside – here’s a close-up of this fun black and white quilt I made for Baby C.
My buddy Lynne made a couple of these for her grandsons, and I loved the idea! I found a little bit of color for the front –
and then lots of color for the back!
I sure hope the little guy likes it!
But along with the blessing of going to the baby shower and getting to see our kids, we also got to spend time with our good friends, Joe and Janet. They housed us and fed us and didn’t mind when we kept taking off to see folks and go places. They are the best! No picture, of course. But here’s one of their backyard – 🙂
They have some really beautiful gardens (not to mention a killer veggie garden that is behind that fence!), filled with all kinds of flowers –
But one thing I was reminded of especially this visit was that beautiful yards and gardens like this take a ton of work.
And a ton of mulch!
(That’s Lily heading to the patio, but the pile of mulch in the background is what was still waiting to be spread.)
I sure do love looking at that yard, but I sure am glad I have none of my own!
It really was a Five Star weekend. Besides the shower and the Birthday Buddy Bash, I got to play cards with dear friends, enjoy a Starbucks with a buddy, stop by my old job and enjoy a great lunch (and company) in downtown D-town, have my hair cut by the girl who cut my hair for twenty years before we left town (instead of a random person at Cuts-R-Us), worship at our old church and generally collect hugs. Lots and lots of hugs. Loved, loved, loved it. (Gary had fun too, but let’s face it, the weekend was more fun for me than him. He cheerfully played chauffeur and even managed to get the tires rotated. See, he had fun too!)
We’re back in Egg Harbor City for couple of days. Two more days of work and then Thursday we head to New Hampshire. We’ll be dropping the rig off at our June project – Pilgrim Pines Camp – and then heading to The Cabin for the week between projects.
I can almost smell the wood smoke now…….
Last night I joined 5 girlfriends from my graduating class of 1969. We weren’t all “best friends” in high school (though some were), but that didn’t seem to matter in the least as we gathered together to celebrate one of us turning 60. (Actually, we all will be turning (or have already turned) 60 this year, so for me it was an excuse to celebrate ALL of our milestone birthdays!) I can’t speak for all of the girls, but I know (with the possible exception of a 10 year reunion) I haven’t seen any of them since that day in June, 42 years ago.
So where are we today? Well…….
We’re married and widowed and divorced. We’re moms and grandmoms and career women. One of us is sacrificially, but joyously, raising her grandson. Several are lovingly caring for their aging parents, knowing that hard days may be ahead. We’ve fought our own personal demons and won many battles. Some we’re still fighting. We’ve made some good choices, and we’ve made some bad choices. We’ve grieved over love lost, and we’ve rejoiced over love found. We’ve worked hard, and played hard and loved well. And we’ve made our share of mistakes. We’ve lived all across this country (and some foreign ones as well) and are delighted to have found each other living close enough after all these years to gather together for times of celebration and to support each other through whatever the future will bring.
I was blessed to be part of the celebration! As one of us said – “the years just melted away”.
Now if we could just do something about those wrinkles! 🙂
Thank you, Gail, for getting the ball rolling. And thank you, dear newly-connected friends, for including this traveler as an honorary Floridian. Facebook might have been the vehicle used to start the connections, but it takes real live sweethearts like you all are to get it off the Internet and into our hearts. God Bless you all!
Girlfriends are the BEST!
And I, for reasons beyond my understanding, have been blessed with some of the BEST girlfriends EVER.
There are my Quilting BFF’s –
Before we hit the road six years ago, we met every Monday night and while our fingers were busy making quilts for our kids’ school, our hearts were melded together as we shared our lives over the quilt frame. We grew together as our kids went from elementary school to high school and then to college. We rejoiced at weddings and the birth of babies. Some nights we solved the problems of the world. We laughed, we cried, we prayed. These ladies are so very precious to me!
Seven of us met for dinner at a local restaurant, ate and talked from 6-9:30PM or so, and then hung around the parking lot finishing up our conversations for another half hour. It was a great night!
(And the picture is from our last gathering 2 years ago and is missing two dear friends – Janet & Nancy. I was too busy catching up (i.e. talking) to pull out the camera for a group shot. But I don’t think any of us have really changed!)
Then there are my Birthday Buddies.
I know I’ve mentioned these dear friends before and it was indeed wonderful to be celebrating our (non) birthdays by enjoying High Tea together and then catching up into the night. These are friends that know all my “stuff” and still love me anyway.
And then there’s Janet –
She and I met on the first day of preschool for two of our children (who are now 29). In those early years we were together so much that her youngest daughter (a babe in arms when we met) to this day calls me Mom. As the kids grew and we lost some of the connecting threads (school changes and the like), we still managed to maintain a special kindred heart friendship. We both count Janet and her sweet hubby Joe as some of our closest friends – the ones you might not talk to for a couple of month, but it doesn’t really matter. You know that they know that you know you’re there for each other! (Plus, now that we know our house fits in their driveway, they know that we’ll be back!).
I can’t even begin to list out the wonderful girlfriends I’ve made in the last six years – Jo, Rosie, Naomi, Lilly, Dolly, Nancy, Joan, Anne, Ellen…..
Or the friends that I seem to have been re-connected to as I blog around the country – like Lynne and Deb.
But these may be the most special of girlfriends –
Because when you’ve been blessed with sisters that are also best friends – well, it doesn’t really get any better than that!
Girlfriends – like I said, I have the BEST!