celebrating a best friend

kim

I’ve made a lot of friends over the years– in high school, in college, in the working world, and now at seminary. In every stage of life we meet new friends who are in similar situations that we are, and it’s always fun when new people enter our lives.

But there’s something irreplaceable about a friend you have known since you were in braces, since before you cared about boys, since you wore calf-length tube socks and weekend activities entailed nothing more than a raucous sleepover at a friend’s house.

I’ve known my friend Kim since seventh grade, when I moved from elementary school to the all girls middle school Harpeth Hall, which to me seemed like an all-day sleepover when I first arrived. It pretty much stayed like that until we graduated from high school.

girls

Kim and I were possibly the most annoying girls to ever walk the halls of our school. This weekend, while we were in New Orleans celebrating her bachelorette party, we spent some time going over all of the antics we used to perform in the hallways of our school, and I have to admit that if I were a teacher there I probably would have hated us.

cafe du monde

Just a brief sampling of some of our “jokes”: We played “narcolepsy” (pretty self-explanatory, right?), repeatedly screamed “happy birthday” to one another in extremely loud, annoying voices, usually until someone stopped us because we would never stop ourselves; had fits in the middle of Latin class where we jumbled up everything on our desk as loudly as possible until our teacher gave us the eye; openly mocked our semi-masculine P.E. teacher by putting our hands on our hips like she did and speaking in deep voices like we were in charge of the class; numerous other activities that cannot be mentioned on this blog…the list could go on and on but I know my husband is rolling his eyes right now so I’ll stop.

sally

(despite the glasses, this is not Kim, but one of her college friends, Sally.)

So to see Kim get married and to get to be a part of this time in her life is such a privilege, and I know that no matter whom I meet, no matter who my friends are wherever I am, no one can ever replace the friends who have seen me grow up, who have lived more of life with me than they have without me. I’m lucky to have a few of those friends still, and they are priceless.

abby

I wasn’t the most fun participant in the weekend because I was a bit under the weather (“haven’t you been under the weather for like a month?” “why yes, reader, you are correct! it’s quite fun, i might add.”), but New Orleans is always a good time, as you can tell from the pictures.

It’s such an interesting city to me, it’s full of character and great food and entertainment, but it’s also poor and dirty and full of debauchery. Some of it is the fun debauchery, but some of it is that debauchery that leaves you feeling a little bit sick, and a little bit sad, and it makes you want to take some people aside and ask them if they are really having any fun, if this is really what they want to be doing with their lives. It’s definitely a place that warrants short visits, so as not to get dragged down by what really goes on behind closed doors.

Luckily for us, we had a fabulous time, ate some good food, got some huge daiquiris, and enjoyed time with good friends. It was a great preview for the weekends to come that we get to celebrate Kim and her soon-to-be husband Travis. My little Kimi is growing up!

Kim, I love you, I’m honored to be a part of your wedding and a part of your life, and I can’t wait to see you walk down the aisle!

-me

here comes the bride

I’m sitting in my parents’ kitchen with my dad before he leaves for work. The time change between Boston and Nashville works in our favor this morning, 6:30 am felt like 7:30 am when I woke up “late.”

Marshall is back in Hamilton, and I fly back this afternoon, after what couldn’t have been a more perfect weekend.

We were in town for the wedding of one of Marshall’s lifelong best friends, Sam. He married his high school sweetheart of more than ten years in one of the most beautiful and most fun weddings I’ve ever attended.

There’s something about a girl on her wedding day that is undeniably beautiful. I was telling one of my friends on Saturday night that I don’t believe I’ve been to a wedding where the bride didn’t look absolutely stunning. I know brides spend all day getting ready for their big day, and many spend months making sure they will look their best, but there’s something more to the radiance that glows from a bride on her big day.

For me, my wedding day was far and away one of the happiest and best days of my life. I was marrying the man of my dreams, I was surrounded by the people I loved most, and I was wearing the prettiest dress I’ll ever wear, ever. It was hanging in my old closet this weekend and I have to admit I went in to stare at it twice. I told my mom I wanted to put it on. I resisted.

That’s me, almost ten months ago! It’s hard to believe we’ve been married for almost a year.

It was so refreshing to see all of our old friends from home, and we even got to spend some time with our families (including Itty. He was so excited).

But I’m also glad to be headed back up to Massachusetts. We’ve made a good little home for ourselves up there, and it’s definitely where we are meant to be right now.

See you on the flip side.

-me

p.s. I wrote most of this post yesterday, we are back in Mass now. I know you were wondering.

on the road again

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Two hours from Charlottesville, VA, the ole stomping grounds!
Visited our friends Emily and Hudson in Columbia, SC last night. And their adorable son Jack!

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Eating at one of my favorite C’ville restaurants, Zocalo, tonight…can’t wait. I plan on eating eight or nine meals tomorrow to get all of my favorite restaurants in.
Hope y’all are having a happy Friday. Just wanted to say hi from the road!
me

the weekend in food

Some people just know how to feed you. My friend Liza, who hosted us at her lake house this weekend, is most definitely one of those people.

She’s also one of those people who can make the pumpkin pie recipe from the pumpkin can taste better than any other pumpkin pie you’ve ever tasted. I know, you would think it was impossible. Well, it’s not.

Not only did I laugh more this weekend than I have in way too long, I also ate more than I have in a long time. Sometimes those two don’t combine very well, but this weekend we did alright.

Right when we arrived, she started in on the fudge pie. She wasn’t pulling any punches this weekend.

She let me lick the bowl. Walter was on a hypoallergenic diet so he didn’t get any.

He still remained faithfully at her side as she baked.


Imperfect perfection.

The next morning she was up before all of us making breakfast for 15. I’ve never seen such perfect pancakes. And you know how I feel about a good breakfast.

Dessert that night was blueberry cobbler, which included, as seen above and below, a lot of blueberries. And a very happy camper watching Liza bake (that’s Christine. Say hi Christine!)

Let’s see that again.

That should speak for itself.

The main course was fried chicken from a place called Chicken Chef, sides prepared by Liza. I could have just eaten a huge plate full of cheese grits, but I am a polite house guest.

We were all pretty satisfied by the end of that meal. Took about an hour break before diving into the cobbler. Worth the wait, I’d say.

And we got to eat it in this beautiful setting, surrounded by trees, water, bugs, and these guys:

A perfect way to spend one of my last weekends in Tennessee. Thanks, Liza!

-me

change is good

Before I start this post, I would like to correct a previous error and formally apologize to Justin for misspelling his last name. It’s spelled Bieber, not Beiber.

On to the weekend. I baked a delightful treat for you, but before I show the recipe to you, I’m going to show you what I made it for!

who am i? i’ll never tell.

We went to a cookout on Saturday with our church home group (basically a small group of people from our church who get together every other week to talk about super deep stuff, or just chat about completely random things that have no bearing on our spiritual lives whatsoever…), and it was fun, but also bittersweet. Marshall and I have been a part of this home group for over two years, and it has been such a blessing in our life. I remember leaving our first home group a couple of years ago and just being amazed at how perfect the group was for us, and while the group has changed a lot over the years, it has only gotten better.

Well, all good things must come to an end, and I believe that is what’s happening with our home group. Our faithful leaders have started a ministry of their own, and they have decided to step down as leaders. It may continue meeting if someone else decides to lead, but many of us are headed in new directions this fall, so I’m not sure what will happen.

It’s sad to think of this group of people no longer meeting, that my Thursdays may no longer be my most anticipated weeknight, that I may scarcely see some of these friends anymore.

Change is good, we need change in our lives. It helps us grow, and life just changes, whether we like it or not. But sometimes I wish I could pick certain parts of my life to remain constant through all of the changes.

I want to put these people in my pocket and carry them with me wherever I go.

Maybe if we were older, if we weren’t at such a transitional stage, the group could stay together. I seriously could have these guys as my community for the rest of my life and I’d be set. But as Solomon (not The Byrds…) said, there is a season for everything, and this is a season of change for our group.

So many of us have so many exciting things going on that I can barely stay sad. We have more babies than I can count, ministries being started, career moves, moves to new cities, we’re all over the place.

not her baby, but she looks pretty good on her…eh??

At times like these, I really have to remind myself that change is good. And I have to make myself stay in touch with people. Historically that is not my strong suit, and I hate that about myself.

This group gives me such great hope for my future though. If I am this young and can find such wise, supportive, and downright fun friends, I’ve got a whole life ahead of me to find even more. Make new friends, and keep the old. One is silver, and the other’s gold.

Am I the only one who ever wondered which one is silver and which one is gold? Because I’m not sure if you know this, but one is definitely better than the other. I feel like not enough thought went into that song.

Maybe I’m over-thinking it.

Regardless of where this group is going, I’m proud of where we’ve been, and I love that they are a part of my story. Good friends never really leave us, no matter how far we roam.

love,

me

p.s. that recipe will come tomorrow, so prepare yourself. I took lots of pictures. LOTS.