This past weekend I was able to make good use of some US airmiles sitting in my frequent flyer account and head-out to Dallas, Texas, to shower one of my best friends in the whole world, Jenny (aka: Nike, like the shoes) with lots of love before her first child is born next month.
My little Nikester (as I fondly refer to her, since she is 7 years younger than me), used to work with Hubby and I back when we were in Southern California. She was a teenager back then and we were her first real job. Her bubbly, sunny personality won us all over, however, and some of my best memories from my time in the OC were with her in the office, zooming around on our office chairs with wheels, and driving Hubby mad while we sang "The hills are alive, with the sound of muuuuuuuuuuusic!" I don't know quite how that became our "thing to do" but it did and it sealed our fate as great friends forever. Whenever Nike is around, I just can't help but smile. Some people make an indelible mark on your life and you just know that, no matter what happens or how far apart you might be, you can always pick-up where you left off. Jenny is one of those few people for me. My friend, E, of TheGurlyLife, is another.
This was my first shower since becoming a mommy myself and it was fun to be the person imparting tidbits and advice vs. either (a) the clueless one or (b) and most recently, the one on the receiving end of all those "Ohhhh, just you wait and see..." comments.
It was a crazy weekend, not only because of my hell-bent schedule (in Saturday night and out early Monday morning to make it back to my desk for work) but also because Jenny and her husband, Wes, had just (as in, late-Saturday-afternoon-just) moved into their new home - a 3,200 square foot mansion just outside of Fort Worth. (It's true what they say, everything is bigger in Texas!)
Poor thing, 8 months pregnant, the weekend of her baby shower and here she is moving house and home. Unfortunately, it was not of her choosing. They had purchased a newly built home in a new community and it was supposed to be ready last November but, as things tend to, that obviously didn't go according to plan.
I remember that, during my baby shower, the very best gifts I got were the arrival of my mum from England and the surprise arrival of my friend, E, from Southern California. So, it was a great feeling to know that I could pay that forward to my little Nikester and show-up for her.
Incidentally, I think "showing-up" for our friends has become a forgotten art these days, at least in my experience. We Facebook, we email, we text, we may even send a Christmas card (although that all-too-often gets thrown by the wayside in our busy lives), or we'll shop online and ship a gift - we do pretty much anything to pay lip-service to friendship without actually having to give of ourselves. I think that working from home and not having a whole bunch of social contact on a daily basis makes me feel this more acutely than most. But anyway, that's a thought for another day and another post. The point is, I was incredibly happy to be able to be there and she was incredibly happy that I made the effort, which only made me even happier still. So, in short, lots of happiness. Something I needed a shot of, so good timing too.
As for Texas... it's no secret that I'm not a fan. I'm not judging anyone who lives there or moves there or whatever, I'm just saying that it, and the people in it, do not float my boat one little bit. In fact, I would venture to say that it makes my boat sink down, waaaay down, 20,000 leagues under the sea down. It's flat, it's empty, it lacks personality, and the locals are snippy and seem to have chips on their shoulder. This was my 4th visit to the state and I haven't found a reason to like it yet, unless, of course, you count "cheap" as a reason. BUT, Jenny is there and, funnily enough, Hubby's best friend lives just the other side of Dallas, so it seems likely that we are doomed to return later this year for another visit. Maybe I will warm with repeated exposure; like a fungus, it may just grow on me.
I know, sorry... a lot of people like Texas. Don't hate me. I've tried/am trying.
So, now all that's left to do is wait for little Megan to be born. We have about 5 weeks to go and I can't wait to see the first pics of her and her beautiful mama.
Love you, Jen!