When I’m making plans to come down to California, I always ask Gina what’s on her social calendar for that week. Book Club? Mastermind? Cooking class? Bunco? (G has a much more exciting — and more regular — social life than I do.) I like to get a chance to spend time with her friends, people I see once a year, at the most.

This trip fell on a Bunco week. For those who don’t know, Bunco is an extremely easy dice game that is perfect for socializing. It takes very little thinking, so you can go on chatting; you change partners constantly, so you get to catch up with everyone; and the winning partners move to different tables, which mixes things up even more.

Gina has been playing with these women, whom she knows from her college sorority, for more than twenty years. Two of the people there last night were bridesmaids in her wedding, as was I. It was so fun to get to hear about their kids and their lives!

I need to set up structured time with my friends, whether a book club or a standing Bunco date. I used to have this with Creative Memories, when I’d have regular crops; David has had it for the past ten years with his game group(s). But lately, my social life seems to consist of promising people that we will get together and then not following up and making an actual date.

I’m going to set a goal: in the next 30 days, I will set up a group like this! Let me know if you want to be in it!

Fry Day (I’m in love)

In addition to all the other consequences of Quinland being gone (an empty space in our little family, a lonely dog, and a lot less laundry), I was really missing all of Q’s friends. Some had gone away to college, some are going to school here in Portland, others are still in high school, but without Quinland to pull them into our orbit, I was afraid we’d lose touch.

You see, we have been blessed to have a huge bunch of young people in our lives — and our home — over the years. These kids are amazing. They are smart and kind and funny and thoughtful and loud and creative and just basically awesome. However, they are getting a little too old to be called “kids,” so I decided they needed a new name.

The term kid comes, of course, from young goats, so I decided we needed another baby-animal name. Puppies? Kittens? Lambs? (Picture me as an elderly British woman.) These all seemed too babyish. Cubs? Calves? Goslings? No, no, no… Then I remembered when we raised salmon in my classroom back in days of yore. The eggs hatch into creepy-looking alevin, and then develop into little fry. That was it! Same meaning, but without the same juvenile connotation. (And besides, this is the Pacific Northwest! We love salmon!) Although Quinland might have preferred joeys, the Young People I Love are now officially called Fry. Continue reading “Fry Day (I’m in love)”

Plan #12 – Make time for friends

I’ve become something of a hermit over the past few years.

This is entirely my own fault. I have been spending the bulk of my time doing two things, both seemingly worthwhile: getting rest when I need it, and catching up on all the chores I ought to have done when I’ve been resting. This makes for a pretty monotonous and stressful life.

My health is a reason for not getting out more, but it should not be an excuse. I can choose – anytime I want – to use my energy to see people and have fun. Yes, the chores will pile up a bit, but they are piling up anyway, and I’m not getting any enjoyment out of it!

So today, on my day off, I didn’t clean my house. I didn’t sort all the piles of stuff in my bedroom that need to be sorted. I didn’t pay a single bill. I didn’t take a nap, and I didn’t go in to work for the day as I was tempted to do since I was home sick on Tuesday. (Disclaimer: I actually did go in to work, but that was only because Ina called to tell me that someone sent me flowers. I couldn’t let them sit there until next Tuesday!)

What did I do instead? Continue reading “Plan #12 – Make time for friends”