Thank You For (not) Being A Friend

So … I’ve been wanting to write this post for a little while & something has caused me to hesitate.  I think it’s difficult to acknowledge that I’m no longer friends with a couple of people whom I had considered to be like sisters to me.  I suppose that my thought process went a little like this: If I say that it’s “over” on my blog to the world at large, then it’s most definitely over for real.  And that finality hurts.  Actually, the whole thing hurt, but after I got past the pain of, not one but two, close friendships ending abruptly, I was able to see the lesson & grow from the experience.

The truth is friends will disappoint you, people change, and maybe you’re not always going to be as close as you are to someone who is an important part of your life right now.  And maybe the “best friend” you thought was like your sister, will become a different person – someone you no longer recognize – and will walk right out of your life without so much as a “goodbye,” leaving you to fumble around for closure all by yourself.  Akin to the guy who just stopped calling you for no reason … only this hurts more deeply, because it was more than just “some guy” you dated a few times whose name you can’t even remember now.  This was a friend.

let them go

let them go

I know that people come in our lives for a reason & sometimes they only stay for a season, or two.  And other friendships I have, (and cherish,) are the ones where we’re close during a certain period of our lives, drift apart, (with no animosity, just the way life happens to lead you,) and then come back together as though no time has passed.  I love that.  I have plenty of really amazing friends that I don’t see, or even talk to, on a daily / weekly / monthly basis, but when we’re together it’s as though no time has elapsed – we pick up right where we left off.

I’ve lost friends to death … suicide, tragic accidents, horrible illnesses & it’s all been awful.  But even with the sudden departures, I at least felt like I had a reasonable idea of why we weren’t friends any longer, and in a way I was able to have some sort of closure.  And some friends I lost touch with and felt like that was ok because we weren’t that close anyhow – they had chosen different paths for their lives, fundamentally changed from the person I had first met, and I felt like it wasn’t a friendship I wanted to continue.

But when friends – really close friends, people who referred to you as “BFF” or “Bestie” or “soul sister” just stop talking to you, abandon you, don’t return phone calls or emails, you are left to try and reconcile what happened on your own.  And it sucks because my motto is “everything can be solved in a conversation.”  Yeah, well, that only works if people are, ya know, conversing.  So an abrupt departure is painful, and sad, and heartbreaking.  You start to question how you could have been so close with someone who has so little regard for your feelings.  But people change, I suppose …

remembering who friends used to be

Now in my early 40’s I think I’m learning – really learning – a very big life lesson about friendships.  My circle has whittled down, especially after everything that has happened over the past 7 years: I got married to a great man, I moved a little further away from everyone (and by further I mean 20 minutes – ha,) and had a child.  A child with special needs.  Which means my “Me-Time” & “Friend-Time” is very limited.  The time that I do have, I don’t want to spend it being roped into unnecessary drama with people who don’t care about things that are important to me.

life is too short

And it’s OK not to “build a bridge” and be the one who reaches out to fix things if you don’t want to fix things.  Someone doesn’t want to be friends with you?  Take them at face value – they don’t want to be in your life, so let them go.

A really close friend, a truly great friend doesn’t necessarily equate to the person you’ve known for the longest time.  Several of my dearest friends are women I’ve only known for the past few years!  And I’m so thankful for their friendship.  I know that as we ebb and flow in life, as we grow & take on different roles in our lives, that our friendships will inevitably change.  And that’s a good thing!

Keep growing … keep learning, and those people who continue to do the same will continue to add value to your life.  The people who are stagnant, living in the past, clutching to old ideals, are those people who won’t be able to add any value to your life.  Let them go.  Be brave & remember that it’s better to be alone than to be surrounded by fake friends.

Where In The Heck Have I Been?

It’s been over a week since my last post, but I have some great reasons for my absence:

  1. Computer issues (not fun & still not resolved – I see a trip to the not-so-genius bar in my future.)
  2. Friends visiting from out of town (fun!)
  3. Car issues (not fun & very expensive)
  4. Working on a new project (fun, but time consuming, especially when coupled with computer issues)
  5. Washing machine issues (not fun)
  6. Hosting parties: pool & poker (FUN!)
  7. Being a being a fairly good mother & wife (fun & sometimes challenging :))
  8. Reading & researching special education law (eh, i’ll file this one under “not fun,” but necessary.)

So there you have it – those are my reasons for not posting, (without going into detail and boring you to tears.)  I’ll be back soon … as a matter of a fact, I got my box yesterday & it was filled with lots of yummy fruits and veggies, so I’m looking forward to doing some cooking (and posting) this weekend.

Two Birds, One Pie Plate of Cinnamon Rolls

This past week, I killed two birds with one stone!  Not only did I complete one of my “creative pay-it-forward” items, (see below,) but I can now check off “cinnamon rolls” from my Bake-It List.  Hooray!  And may I say, they were pretty delicious even if they were a lot of work.

The Creative Pay-It-Forward was something that went viral on facebook, (not sure where it originated, and I normally don’t partake in viral facebook stuff, but this seemed right up my alley.)  Here it is:  “2013 Creative Pay-It-Forward: The first five people to comment on my status will receive from me, sometime in the next calendar year, a homemade gift – a small surprise of some sort (baked goods, a card, piece of art…whatever I think would suit you)! There won’t be a warning and it will happen without notice and whenever the mood strikes me. The catch? Those five people must make the same offer in their Facebook status. Keep paying it forward and spread the happy. Oh, and “likes” don’t count. You must comment!”

homemade happiness | The Fairly Good Mother

The first friend of mine to comment happens to live 3 minutes away, so I thought, why not make the cinnamon rolls & if they turn out ok, I’ll run them up to her as a sweet surprise.  I wanted to make the cinnamon rolls as close to the holidays as possible because I know we’re all on a healthy-eating kick.  Fortunately for me, I am always ready with an excuse to indulge in sweets & my friend doesn’t believe in dieting 🙂

So, the other day afternoon, I began making the dough for my cinnamon rolls. I started with Pioneer Woman’s recipe, but halved it.  NOTE: Unless you want to wake up at like 5am & have 2 child-free, interruption-free hours, you will need to make the dough the night before, which is what I did.

Here’s the recipe with the measurements I used:

Adapted from PIONEER WOMAN’S CINNAMON ROLLS
(makes 4 pans of rolls / 5 rolls per pan)

Ingredients:
2 C whole milk
1/2 C vegetable oil
1/2 C sugar
1 tbsp active dry yeast
4 C flour
1/2 C flour
1/2 heaping tsp baking powder
1/2 scant tsp baking soda
1/2 tbsp salt

Filling:
1 C melted butter
3/4 C sugar
1/2 C cinnamon (or more depending on preference)

Frosting:
1/2 bag powdered sugar
1/4 C milk
1 tsp maple flavoring (you can use vanilla instead for a different flavor or if you cannot find maple extract)
2 tbsp melted butter
splash of coffee (use only if you use the maple flavoring)
pinch of salt

METHOD:
Mix whole milk, vegetable oil and sugar in a pan. Scald to 150 degrees. Let cool until lukewarm (about 45 mins or so.) Sprinkle in yeast and let sit for a few minutes. Then add 4 C flour, stir mixture together. Cover and let sit for one hour.  Add 1/2 C flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir mixture together.

*If you don’t want to make these right away, you can cover the dough in an air-tight container & keep in the fridge for a day or two.**

Sprinkle surface generously with flour and form into a rectangle, roll the dough thin, maintaining a rectangular shape. Drizzle melted butter over dough. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Roll the dough toward you, (note: this is MESSY, I don’t have any advice for how to try and keep in the buttery cinnamonny sugar … it will ooze out & I guess that’s just ok.) Pinch the seam to seal it, (note: I didn’t do a great job at this & it didn’t really end up being a big deal.) Swirl melted butter in the bottom of foil pie pans. Cut rolls 3/4 to 1 inch thick and lay in pans. Let rolls sit for 30 minutes to rise.

Bake at 400 for 15 to 18 minutes.

Combine all frosting ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Generously drizzle frosting over warm rolls after they come out of the oven.

Finished Product!

Finished Product … YUM!

Much to my excitement, the cinnamon rolls turned out quite delicious!  Both The Boy & The Husband gobbled them up quickly.  Luckily, my friend was home, so that was one pie plate & I had two extra pie plates that I didn’t want lying around the kitchen tempting me, so I packed up The Boy & loaded the rolls into my car, and took them down to our neighborhood fire station.  The firefighters were pleasantly surprised & The Boy got to hang out in the fire truck for a bit.  Win, win, win!