Back in February, a friend called to invite me to a girls weekend in Vermont. I was knee deep in the job hunt, and afraid to commit to time away, but after nailing down the dates and talking with Mario, I decided to go for it. If I got a job, I'd just have to let my employer know I had plans. It could be my last chance to get away for a while, and, well, I miss my New England tribe something fierce.
I've said it a thousand times, but I'll say it again: I am overjoyed that we moved here. The Pacific Northwest is where I am meant to be. Maybe forever. But a long-distance move, no matter how welcome, means leaving things you love behind. Because it's never all bad. For us, it is the people we met through Kiddo's school. A group of parents and educators so amazing, I still can't quite get over the fact that we don't see them on the regular. We met them later in our New England years, and that is my only regret. I have yet to find a social circle here, which makes me miss them all the more.
Last Thursday I made the cross-country trek to Northern Vermont to meet them. Most knew I was coming, but for one it was a surprise. She's quite possibly the best person to surprise; her reaction crossed the entire happiness spectrum and I felt so darn loved. We all marveled at how, after almost a year apart, it was like I was never gone. That is certainly a testament to how amazing and welcoming these women are: I can be exactly who I am. Ugly bits and all. I can talk about my relationship, worries, fears, loves, parenting woes, and joys. Several times I waged that all too familiar emotional what if: Would I live here again for them?
Though if this trip reminded me of anything, it's that the world is small these days. And also that one must always say yes to a girls weekend.
We spent three glorious days visiting craft + farmers markets, local shops, and the quaint little villages that make up the area. There was also laughter to the point of tears, mixed drinks, and too many shenanigans to recount. (Though girl code prevents the disclosure of such things anyway.)
This one's for my girls. (Cue photo dump.)
Aforementioned shenanigans. Can we talk about the brilliance that is this photo?!
So much laughter. It did my soul a world of good.
These Medicine Cards blew my (skeptical) mind. Each of us drew vastly different cards and they were crazy accurate. I gained so much insight.
Snow still lingering in the mountains.
Homemade Pad Thai (the best I've ever had, hands down), five forks, and Cards Against Humanity. And laughing until water came out my nose.
A darling little friend who caught a ride on my shirt.
One of my friends went back to school to get her Master's Degree so she can teach visually impaired kids. I am so proud of you, Jane! (Also, how about this birthday cake Angy made for her? In braille! She's my hero.)