OK, so my trip back home way wonderful and will take multiple posts to relay I’m sure, so I’m going ahead and calling this Part one. The alternate title for Part One is:
…Oh, I wish they all could be Carolina girls
I’ve been amassing female friends over the years in each phase of my life, in each place I live, and in each job I hold. Wherever I am, I seem to aways find a woman who I learn from, laugh with, and call a friend for life. I’m not sure how I’ve gotten this lucky, but I’m am so SO thankful that I have these ladies. There have been countless occasions I’ve been unsure of how I could ever live without each one of them.
Since I live far away from most of my girlfriends, I take any opportunity I can to visit. So while I was at home in NC I connected with several of these wonder women including my dearest Julia (who you can find knitting here and here), Nora, and Erin (who you can find on the web here and here.) Now for my attempt at brief, but effusive gushing….
Julia is my younger/youngest/only sister whom I count as one of my best friends and whom I’d pick to be my sister from anyone on the planet if I had the choice. Jay Bear and I are true kindred spirits and yet totally different in so many ways. For this I am grateful because I learn so much from her. She is an inspiration in so many things, but here are just a few of the countless things I love about my Baby Bee: besides being the most creative person I know, she is also driven, extremely kind, and not apposed to me continually changing my nickname for her or calling her cell several times in a row (even when she doesn’t/can’t/won’t answer). Maybe I should add that she is also patient here :). And (despite the pain of childbirth, the difficulty of postpartum, and the expense of a second baby) my Bulia fills my life with such joy that I hope (more than anything) I can give my daughter a sister to call her own someday.
This is a photo of her playing music with her niece. I have a feeling they will be jamming for many many years to come. That’s Julia on keys and my little one on harmonica.
Nora is a true bosom buddy, soul sister, bff, and sister from another mister. She and I are extremely close and VERY similar, but she is undoubtably a superior version. She’s like ‘me 2.0’ 😉 Nora is the type of friend who I can live with in 600 square feet without feeling cramped, go to a monster truck rally with or the ballet, or just go to the grocery store with, but always ALWAYS know I’ll have fun. Somehow over the 17 years we’ve known each other we’ve never run out of things to say and she’s always the person I want to take with me to do something/anything. Here are some of the things I love about Nora: She is bold, brave, brilliant, and loving at all times and with everyone. She has been my rock through the good and the bad. She knows all my uglies and loves me anyway. And, if I could chose my family, she’d be in it. As it is, I count her as a friend for life, a sister, and an aunt to my daughter.
If Nora and I are identical twins, Erin and I are fraternal twins. Sharing the womb of youth, Erin, Nora and I all managed to grow up so similarly and yet so distinctly. Our lives have wondered across the globe at times and we’ve grown older, but we are always connected. Deeply deeply connected. The joy of these friendships is that, like with family, there is an understanding of our individual histories, which shapes our understanding of our present. And with this knowledge we’ve developed an acceptance of each other and a deep admiration that seems to only strengthen with time (just like it does with my sister Julia) and help us continue to become our best selves.
Erin is the epitome of beauty and grace, yet she can out run you, out work you, and out chicken-wrangle you any day of the week. She is everything I want to be when I grow up, but she still listens to me and makes me feel valued and loved. Here are some of the things I love about Erin: She strives to create beauty in the world, while recognizing the beauty that already exists and preserving its integrity. Erin never just talks the talk, she walks the walk. (When she said she wanted to homestead and begin to move in the direction of living off the grid, she did. Now she heats her home with wood, has chickens and pigs, and has been known to make her own soap, lotion, and deodorant. Bad ass.) And she is super smart while still being funny and self deprecating in a way that makes you feel welcomed into her lovely world. She, like Julia and Nora, is more ‘family’ than ‘friend.’
I love these woman more than I can ever express and getting to just ‘shoot the shit’ with them for an afternoon in NC made the 20 hour commute worth it.