A Sabbatical Year January 2, 2015

If ever there was one, it was 2014. I’m referring to the unbelievably extended duration between my last post and this one. If you’re going to write a blog, it’s recommended you post 6 days a week…. not once or twice per year! Well folks, I launched this blog, accepted a job and held on for dear life over the next 365+ days as I tackled new experiences and many challenges which arrived as a result. Even though I’m not a teacher (though I should have been one as it speaks to my skill set), I will take liberty in calling this my sabbatical year from blogging as the new found demands precluded any blog fun on my part. So firmly back in the blogging seat, seat belt fastened and ready to type away, I asked myself “what should today’s topic be about?” You see, I really never know what thoughts I’m going to share until I get in here and the mind starts sending pulsations of brain waves to my finger extremities. Yes, it’s entirely true. OK, so what will it be? Hmmm…got it!

Coming off the holidays and starting a new year, I think about friendships. Friendships take all matter of shape and form…deep, wide, shallow, surface, tried & true, seasonal, abrupt, brief, lazy, malleable, unbending, interconnective, warm, infectious, flourishing, stagnant – you get the point.

So I ask myself “What kind of friend am I?”
“How am I perceived in the friend world?”
“What makes a great friend?”
“What do I admire most about my friendships?”
“On a scale of 1-10, where do I fall in the academy awards of friends?”
“Am I the kind of friend I want to experience in others?”
Geez, so many questions! Now you just may understand why this blog carries the name it does. Do these questions matter? I think it depends on where you are in life. Perspective is everything.

For me, so much of friendship comes down to one word…. GENUINE. I desire friendships which are genuine, authentic, heart-felt, and unwaveringly real. I believe these friendships are realized most as we grow older. We come to a place where we understand the value, the return, the gift of giving, the ability to gracefully and thankfully receive as well.

Friendships flourish best when purposeful and nurtured. {That stated, I will break to say there does exist those friendships when often far & wide the miles cause separation…they naturally possess the uncanny ability to pick up right where they left off no matter the years of moss which gathered in between} To care about someone can manifest itself in a myriad of ways, however nothing speaks louder than when noticeable efforts for quality time spent together are forged over a meal, in laughter, deep conversation, or just side by side with no words at all. Nurturing the give & take reciprocal relationship requires the art of listening and being genuinely interested in the life of another. A quick text or note, an invitation for a meal, a vacation spent together or a dose of support at a critical time can bring joy to the soul of friendships for lifetimes sometimes unrealized by the giver of the moment(s).

Nurturing requires accepting invitations when you’re weary and want to take a pass. Nurturing requires effort toward memory-making opportunities. Fertilizing the friendship for growth means disagreeing in respectful ways and being free to share without holding grudges. It also means forgiving easily and giving the other person the benefit of the doubt. Sometimes it requires stepping out of our comfort zone box and into the waters of uncertainty. Not all friendships are easy…. some require more effort. Not all friendships are able to last a lifetime. I believe some people come in and out of our lives for purposes we may never know or understand. There will be ebbs and flows; tide in – tide out. Above all, it always comes back to The Golden Rule… “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”

I strive to be that kind of friend. What kind of friend are you?

friendship quote

Author Details


How to describe oneself is not an easy task despite the fact I often hear I have a penchant for writing. To try and encapsulate myself into a few sentences is challenging at best since I am filled with a heart for constant curiosity and the desire to keep learning. I take great delight in most all outdoor activities... especially those which involve hiking or being around the water. Camping in our pop-up or in a tent is always an invitation to discovery which I cannot turn down. A 'memory collector' is how I'd label myself, largely because I have this unending zest for life... I don't want to miss a thing! I love surprises, love to laugh and I get the biggest kick out of being married. I adore animals and my favorite happens to be a precious Golden Doodle named Zoe who came into my life as my 40th birthday present and has been the biggest gift that keeps on giving!! Sunflowers make me instantly smile and traveling makes my heart pound with excitement. Fortunate and very blessed to have traveled many places, my all-time favorite is the land of my ancestors, Ireland. Ireland calls me by name and beckons me to exploration like no other place I've been. And speaking of that, researching my ancestry has been a fun endeavor which often takes me down rabbit hole after rabbit hole as I seek to unveil mysteries of the past. Hanging out or traveling with friends is another area which I derive great joy from... and purposely nurturing friendships through cooking meals, entertaining or planning events gets my creative juices flowing. Once again.... it's that making memories thing! Beyond that, I could list a thousand things I find interesting, stimulating and feel so blessed to experience, indulge or simply wish for the day I get to investigate with a feverish glee. That's me!

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