Last weekend.. or was it 2 weeks ago? either way.. I went away with my girlfriends for a scrapbook weekend. I know, I know, DORKY! But it's what we do. It was the Scrapbookers Anonymous Getaway run by my friend Lisa and her friend Laura. It was an all inclusive weekend with your room, food, scrapbook space... just awesome! The best part of the deal?
Time with my friends.
I don't know why I am so blessed. I certainly don't deserve all this. Having these friends makes my life so much fuller. We get together 4 times a year for a girls weekend and the pretense of scrapping. I am an artsy-creative person, and this is my outlet. When we go away, it gives me the freedom to just create, to express myself, to be messy and not clean up and just accomplish things. It feeds my creative soul. I relish the chance to just be.
More than that, it connects me to some of the most important women in my life. We call ourselves "The Black Sheep". It was kind of a funny and completely innocent story that ended up getting us in trouble(well, me mostly for some reason, as usual, even though I don't think I was the one to coin it, and it came mostly from a passing comment someone made, and then someone else found this extremely cute sweatshirt on line and we wanted to get something warm...but I digress). So, now we "Flock" and make stupid sheep jokes (and lots of jokes, mostly very inappropriate jokes which use very bad language that you wouldn't believe I say in front of my mother, except she is one of the biggest offenders and curses even more than I do! There I go digressing again...) and we wear slippers and flannel pants for 3 days and scrap and eat Twizzlers and Diet Pepsi and Cheetos (but only the crunchy kind and only with a nose picker which is really a scrap book tool.. whole other story though)and have matching sweatshirts and T-shirts and buy way too much stuff just because someone else has it.
We stay up until 3:00 in the morning or later. Some of sleep in, some of us don't. I won't mention who does or doesn't shower. We pack heavy, eat bad, and laugh until we cry or splurt some type of beverage from our noses. We say the dumbest stuff that is hysterical at the moment, and then insist on writing it down to remember later because really, who could possibly come up with some of this stuff? But truthfully, we just want to preserve the time we spend together and make that laughter last a little longer. We always get little presents for each other, we blog, we email, and every time I see a sheep, anyplace, any time, I smile. I smile because it makes me think of them, how much fun we have on our weekends and just how much I love each and every one of them.
There is Bonnie and Amy, sisters I have known since we were kids through our moms. We hadn't seen each other in years and then sort of renewed our friendship as adults. Chris and Aubree, I met through our children in one way or another. Lisa and I had a mutual group of acquaintances that we scrapped with and just kind of clicked. All of these girls and I just sort of work somehow. Not easy for a large group of women to do. They are no nonsense, honest, loyal, fun, kind, and accept me for what I am without any reservations. This is the best you can get in a friend.
And then, the last, of this group, I have known since the day I was born. My mom. If I scrap, she scraps. If I was going away and having fun, well, then she had to go too. She fits right in and laughs right along with the rest of us. I love that I get to share this with her. I came very close to losing my mom a few years ago, so I treasure each day with her. I have to make sure that we get to create as many memories and fun times as possible while she is here so that I can hold them in my heart when she isn't some day. And when that day comes, not for a long time I hope, I know my sheepy friends will be there to help me through it. That, my friends is cool on a completely whole other level.
So as you can see, the 7 of us are a hodge-podge of people. They call me the glue of the group, since I am the common connection that brought us all together. I think of them as the glue that holds me together sometimes. We go away once each season. Come hell or high water, I need my sheep to flock. They ground me. They accept me. They know me. They know I can be a bitch, they know I am not always the easiest of people, the most likable of people, and yet, for some strange reason, they love me anyway. I am not sure how they do it, but they see the good in me. Everyone has days when they feel like the world is against you. When other people are all good at pointing out your faults, your weaknesses, the mistakes you made, and the choices you should have chosen. Sometimes, when I have a hard time seeing the good in myself, I think of them. Sometimes that is all it takes to make the day a little brighter.
So here is to you, my friends.
Thanks for liking me just the way I am.