(I was invited to be a guest writer on my friend, Joanne’s blog
It was a privilege and pleasure to write about her and her brand new book. Every now and then, words just slip onto the page & writing is easy peasy. This was one of those times.)
Admit it, we have all said it. “Geesh, I need some new friends.”
While in algebra class, it was easy to find a study friend. During ballet practice, friends were there to help us learn. Moving with the Army, we met new friends every 4 years.
However, once you go over the 50 year mark, new friends are few and far between.
Most of us have settled down, take a class now and then, same job or work from home, same church friends, same neighbors, not many faces change.
Then when you aren’t looking, almost magically, God hears your prayer and slips a new friend into your pocket. One of those good kind of friends. The ones with a fabulous laugh & beautiful heart. The kind of friend who while talking on the phone, just as she arrives at an event, you politely say good bye and good luck, then SCREAM, WAIT! Do you have on cute earrings and good lipstick? Seriously, she says, oh yes. Then tells you the kind of earrings and shade of lip stick she chose.
To be honest, you feel a tiny bit guilty that she is making others wait while she finishes the phone call. (To the world, it looks like an important phone call. Reality check, Lipstick color IS important!) Along with that tiny bit of guilt, you feel lucky. Lucky that she is your friend and she is choosing to answer your important lip stick question before she races off to put the fine touches on an event.
I write a blog called, Sunday’s Child full of Grace. https://sundayschildfullofgrace.wordpress.com/
Little did I know those five words would help me find a friend. I write about the grace that swirls around me.
As you well know, life throws us for a loop now and then. A couple years ago, I was on the ground trying to get back up onto the trampoline of life when Joanne offered me a cup of coffee & and a hug.
Two people living on opposite sides of the country, God saw fit to bring us together. It is Grace pure, sweet and simple.
I can’t tell you how many times I have written a slip of paper for my grateful jar about Joanne. (I just re-read this, it sort of sounds like I am a weird stalker of some sort. I prefer to think of it as the Joanne Fan Club!)
Joanne sent me a good wish card with a picture of lilacs!
Joanne has a new grand baby!
Joanne shared some honey!
Joanne published her book!
Believe it or not, we have never had a cup of coffee in person. Honest truth. We text and say, I can chat in 15 minutes, pour your coffee and let’s talk. Then we get to put our feet up & drink coffee until the cup is empty or our phone batteries die. snort. Yes, we have talked over those annoying beeps. Oh you don’t know? After you chat for 3 hours on your phone it starts beeping. The beeping means, Enough girls……..go live more life so you have something to talk about next time.
We talk about our grands. We talk about food, husbands, kids, weddings, more food, bees, honey, quilts, cross stitch, blogs, lipstick, earrings, books, writing books, travel, vacations and yes plans to meet one day.
Joanne writes a blog about grace& love. http://katherinesdaughter.com/ She writes what she lives. With the amazing ability to make those around her feel covered in grace and goodness, she somehow makes you feel better just by stopping by.
Yes, her writing is a respite in the glorious commotion of the day. She gracefully & simply refills your spirit. Her words remind you that there is good out there and there is an abundance for all of us.
One day, she asked if I would help her with her book. Good Golly, Miss Molly! I was beyond flattered that she would consider me. I was rubbing my hands together with glee. So excited and thrilled that she asked me to be part of her book writing journey.
Oh no, then it hit. How on earth was I going to look over her writing and make as I call them “gentle suggestions”? While in school and even when I home schooled, I loathed corrections made with red ink & capital letters. Urgh. Seemed so mean and awful and not very encouraging. I didn’t want to come off as a school marm with a waaaaaay too tight hair bun, slapping a ruler in my hand wearing less than cute shoes. I didn’t want to judge.
The air quickly leaked out of my (imaginary, celebratory) fancy balloon bouquet.
While I was thrilled for her book accomplishment, I didn’t want, even gentle suggestions to smudge our lovely friendship. We had to talk.
We talked and talked and wrote back and forth and talked some more.
In the end, I used green ink to make my gentle suggestions. I asked questions. Some suggestions she jumped on others she gently let go. We found a way to balance on the see saw.
In the style of friendship, grace guided us through.
Oh yes, I am beyond happy for her and her accomplishment. I am grateful we worked on part of her dream together. It was such a huge moment her life, by her sharing, somehow our friendship sort of seems sealed in the grace of the work.
I got to chat with her on the day her book cover was decided. The day her book was being published, again we talked. We talked as she drove to her book launch.
As I tore open the end of that padded yellow envelope, I held my breath, the book, her book slipped gently out and onto my counter. I was teary eyed.
I am so proud of my friend. She is (with gorgeous lipstick, sassy earrings and a beautiful smile) standing in the middle of her goal. Sort of dream like, only for real.
Heartfelt congratulations my friend! I loved watching you cart wheel through the book writing process. You inspire us, your readers.
Here is the beautiful part. The book is good. Really good. Each chapter is a nugget of gold. You feel bathed in grace with each page you turn. You almost don’t want to dog ear the corners. Ha. I already have. I have drawn hearts and underlined inspiring phrases. You feel as though you are sneaking a peek into her world. Secret gems that you might use in your own jumble of life. I know the book was written with the idea of reading a chapter here or there with a lovely cup of coffee. However, once you open the cover, you fall into the pages and are covered with goodness & love. You can’t put it down. Yes, that good.
Grace, it’s Amazing.