Tuesday, June 28, 2011

my california family

i feel like there are no words adequate to describe how much i love and appreciate my friends here in california. amazing? incredible? wonderful? selfless? fun? beautiful? awesome sauce?

being away from true blooded family here in california forced us to become family with our friends. it has been an incredible experience, one i wouldn't trade for the world. but it also makes leaving that much more difficult. these {insert great adjective here} women have been my salvation on more than one occasion. 
 {top: rachel, lindsey, jaimi, michelle, cheryl, dyan, nicole, whitney, meghan
bottom: mary, sarah, maren, elaine, jessica, kim, laura, kristen, jen}

they threw a going-away party for kristen and i and it was wonderful. it's amazing to see how the kids have grown and changed...and how many more of them there are! i'm pretty sure i'm the only one whose number of children has stayed stagnant over the past 4.5 years.

not only did they throw us a party and provide us with yummy food, they also made a little photo book for leah with pictures of all of her california friends for her to always remember. we've already read it a bazillion times. and i've already cried that many times too. 

these women embrace the good and the bad in me. they've been my running buddies, my dinner dates, my pedicure partners. they've offered warm meals and shoulders to cry on as well as lots of laughter and good, good times. they knew leah when she was chatty, finger-feeding, book flipping leah. and they loved her. they know leah now and love her just the same. 

 {cousins leah and lauren - little sister of leah's twin, jack}

their kids treat leah like she is one of them. they don't even bat an eye when their hair happens to get tangled in her busy fingers. they just giggle and say, "leah is giving me a hug!" or when one of them says, "i'm not very nice to leah", you can rest assured there will be another who says, "if you're not nice to leah, then i can't be your friend." {true story.} they hold her hand and talk to her and include her. they tell me what she's thinking - and they're usually right. i want to pick up each and every one of these tiny little angels and put them in my pocket to take them with us everywhere we go.

there is so much i will miss about being around these wonderful moms and kids each day, but i'm so happy that they've been a part of my life. a big, huge, enormous part of my life. a part i will always treasure and for which i will always be ever so grateful.


Julia Wade said...

it's the hardest thing to say goodbye. i KNOW the feeling. <3 they will be forever friends though, and that is the best part.

ed and kelli said...

pretty sure i cried a little on this one. you DO have AMAZING friends! and pretty sure the kid who said they can't be friends with someone who is mean to leah is probably my FAVORITE kid in the world! i want friends like that.. haven't found them yet in 3+ years in AZ :(

Molly said...

Aw. That looks really fun. Wish I could have been there to show you my love, too! I am really going to miss you. :(