Thursday, January 21, 2016

Seventeen Things

                 “There is one friend in the life of each of us who seems not a separate person, however dear and beloved, but an expansion, an interpretation, of one’s self, the very meaning of one’s soul.” –Edith Wharton

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      My Grandpa said once, if you find one person in this life who you can truly call a best friend, you're luckier than most.

     I'm luckier than most, because I have found someone I can call a best friend. Though, it would be a more true statement to say that Naomi found me first.

     Today my darling friend Naomi turns 17! She is now one year older than me...for about nine days. Then we'll be equals again. ;-) I've known Naomi since she was fourteen...which seems super strange now, because that means we've known each other almost three years. We've been best friends for about two years. Sometimes it feels like it was just the other day the name Naomi was just an anonymous commenter here on The Blog, and now Naomi means one of the brightest, dearest, best people in my life.


     Anywho, it being her special day -- her special seventeenth day -- I wanted to do something in her honor here on the ol' blog. For a long time I couldn't think what. I wanted it to be memorable, unexpected, but not cliche. I thought for awhile, and this is what I came up with: a list of Ten Things. Just like in Because of Winn-Dixie, when Opal gets her daddy the Preacher to tell her ten things about her mama; one thing for each year she's been alive. I wanted to make a list of Seventeen Things about Naomi; Seventeen Things about what she's like, and why she's the bestest best friend a girl could ever have.

Ruth


~ Seventeen Things ~

#1 Naomi has a huge imagination. She's always making up wonderful stories, wondering things about people, coming up with clever scenarios that make life much more interesting. If she's ever bored (which, trust me, doesn't happen often) she'll pretend she's a character in a book. (It helps.) Oh, and do you know what she told me once when I was moaning about how stressed I was over school? 

     "You know what you should do? Pretend you’re in a terrible Oliver-Twist-like school and that you HAVE to work real hard or otherwise you’ll get a public thrashing. It helps."

     Isn't that SWEET?


#2 Naomi is a creative soul. She likes things to look nice. She's always telling me about re-decorating her room and I WISH I could see it in person. Oh, and her blog always looks tidy and lovely and fresh.

#3 She loves gossip. The good kind of gossip. This is something we share. ;-)

#4 She reads books like CRAZY. Seriously, it's insane. You never knew anybody who reads faster than Naomi does. She is reported to have read GWTW in a single day and lived through it. *stares blankly in the face of such heroism*

#5 She also writes like crazy; she's always working on some story or other. I've read three of her books and some of her short stories, and if you don't know this already, the GIRL HAS GOT TALENT. (Even though she misspells things sometimes. That's what I'm here for.) ;-P I consider myself extremely fortunate to have the honor of being the first to read much of her writing.

#6 She writes really long and fluttery letters, and equally long and interesting emails. She doesn't see a long-distance friendship as a burden -- we both know we're incredibly blessed to be able to talk to each other at ALL across so many miles and oceans.

     And her letters are stinkin' beautiful -- the first card she ever sent me had a picture of Emma Woodhouse and Mrs. Weston on it. :-) AND she always adds little notes to the postman on her envelopes, which I imagine must tantalize him like crazy.


#7 Naomi makes up words. Like 'spinkly' and 'alore' and, my personal favorite, 'magneglyforious.' That's GENIUS, folks.


#8 She loves Newsies as much as I do, and someday we're going to stand on top of a roof and sing "I'm the King of New York!" loud enough to deafen all the neighbors.


#9 Naomi cares about people. She loves her parents (who, admittedly, are pretty stinkin' awesome), all her millions of siblings (Naomi is one of those people who was meant to be born in a huge family), her friends, even strangers in her French class. Above all she loves the Lord, and you can see that radiate through everything she does.


#10 She is really good at giving compliments -- and she means them, too. She once told me one of my characters was a "darling bumblebee". How's that for a special compliment?


#11 Naomi is honest. If she doesn't like something, she'll tell you. (She'll try to be very nice about it, though.)


#12 She doesn't like animals -- at all. We're working on this. ;-) Though she does admit that my bunnies are the cutest she's ever seen. (You did say that, didn't you dear?)


#13 She's trustworthy. Tell her something that's weighing on your heart, and she won't take it lightly. She won't tell anyone else, either, if you don't want her to.


#14 Naomi's smart. If she doesn't know how to do something, you can bet she'll figure it out.


#15 She's insatiably curious. She wants to know everything, be in on everything. She asks a LOT of questions. This is annoying and lovable all at once. ;-)


#16 She doesn't like spending time outside much. See, her books are inside, and she doesn't like reading outside. (????) I keep telling her to get more sunshine. (So does her grandma.)


#17 Naomi can make a person laugh. If you've read her blog posts you probably know this. ;-) She has this witty, sparkly sense of humor that can be subtly funny without having to use exclamation points. (Funniest of all -- in my opinion -- are the conversations we often have in caps lock. We have strong emotions, see, Naomi and I. Thank goodness we've got each other.)



     Thank goodness indeed. No, how about thank God. There's definitely something divinely orchestrated about this wacky friendship of ours. Who'da thunk a farmgirl from the Empire State and a delightfully crazy bibliophile from this teensy European country called Belgium would ever find each other? What's more, become inseparable best friends? It didn't just happen. It was fate, luck; no, it was a blessing. God knew we needed each other. And I'm so, so, so eternally grateful. :-)



So Happy Birthday, dear old pal. Here's to seventeen!

29 comments:

  1. I.... I... I ...

    JUST.

    I KIND OF KNEW THIS WAS COMING (I Admit) BUT I STILL CAN'T SAY HOW MUCH I LOVED IT. GOD, THANK YOU FOR MY LITTLE EPONINE. I read it with a huuuuge insane grin on my face and I told Hannah to stop talking to me because I was reading the sweetest thing ever. :-P

    YOU QUOTED MY EMAIL. :-O (That's okay. It was part of an email that wasn't too personal, so OKAY.) I pretend I'm a character in a book when I'm not bored, too. :-P Just saying.
    Yes, we love gossip. Hush. :-D
    "She also writes like crazy; she's always working on some story or other."<< heh - really? Well, thanks. I'm glad to hear I write like crazy. :-) AND I HAVE TALENT. WELL THANKS. (You boosted my writing confidence and I needed that so thank youuuu.) *Opens up "Green Eyes"*
    No, long distance friendship is NOT a burden. It does CONSIST some burdens, but it's not a burden. :-D
    "She always adds little notes to the postman on her envelopes, which I imagine must tantalize him like crazy." HAHAhahaha.
    YES. ABOUT NEWSIES.
    Millions of siblings. Emma. :-P And I loved that you mentioned "strangers in French class." :-) I don't love them (the strangers) enough to be sad that there isn't a lesson this evening, though. Not gonna lie.
    Yes, Aunt Isabelle was the bestest. :-D
    Yes, your bunnies are ADORABLE. I might even stroke them; they're that adorable.
    THE "(so does her grandma)" bit made me LAUGH OUT LOUD. Hannah demanded immediately to know what was on. IT MADE ME LOL. (Ewwwww.)
    Yes, I agree, our use of caps lock is pretty darn funny.

    Yes. Thank the LORD he made us meet. I was looking in my photo album today, and there was one picture of a four-year-old me in front of a snowman on the fourth of February. And I said to the 4-year-old me, "Did you know your future best friend just turned four?!!!"
    YOU'RE THE BEST.

    *sniffles-or-would-sniffle-if-sister-weren't-in-the-room*

    THANK YOU FOR THIS.
    I seriously want to print this post out and frame it. :-D

    ~ Naomi

    ReplyDelete
  2. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THIS WONDERFUL WONDERFUL GIRL!!!!

    This post was just so gorrrrrgeous!!!!!! Emma, you did an amazing job :)

    P.S. We wuvs you so much, Naomi :)

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  3. Happy 17th Birthday dear Naomi!!!

    Ah Emma, this was the loveliest of birthday posts!

    And I love the gossip thing - gossip doesn't have to bad and when it isn't it's so delightfully fun. :)

    It was also just a really well done ode to best friendship and got me all teary inside thinking about my sisters and me.

    I could just feel the warmth of yours and Naomi's friendship emulating from the words. Well done indeed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Eowyn. :-) I agree -- gossip doesn't always have to mean bad. It's very fun. (Especially with Naomi.) Ohh, thank you so much! I'm glad it was meaningful to you -- it was certainly meaningful to me.

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  4. Awwww. This is so sweet, Emma. And I'm so happy for you and Naomi! Having such a dear friend...even if it is a long distance friendship...is enormously precious.

    I love what you said about God orchestrating your friendship. That is so true. It's wonderful to think how much He cares about us...even to the smallest details of our lives. :)

    Lovely post, Emma!

    ~Miss March

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    1. Miss March, it is indeed. A huge blessing. :-)

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  5. Eliane (Naomi's mum)January 21, 2016 at 9:09 AM

    Dear Emma,
    This was so beautiful! It brought tears to my eyes. Thank you so much for writing this. I agree with all of your points:) ...it is so lovely to see someone else write it about your own daughter.
    I had to laugh out loud many times.
    Looking forward to meeting you one day. Thank you again!
    Eliane xx

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    Replies
    1. Eliane/Naomi's mum (I'm not sure what to call you :)), I'm so delighted that you commented!!! (I actually did shriek when I saw the comment. That's not an exaggeration.) Oh, I'm glad you liked it and I'm glad it made you laugh. :-) I'm looking forward to meeting you too!!!

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  6. :-D I love reading your posts about/to/with each other :-) Hugs all around!

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    Replies
    1. Hamlette, I'm glad you do because we love writing them. :-)

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  7. Awwwww!! This is the sweetest thing I have ever read!! The friendship you girls have is beautiful!!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Erudessa! We think so too. :-)

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  8. Ohhhhhhh Emma, this is just out and out and downright BEAUTIFUL!!!!!! :D :D

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  9. Oh, Emma, this post was so sweet. (And look! It's Ruth!!)
    For every single one of these points.....YES. I'm sure you know Naomi much better than I do, but I have noticed every single one of those points you made. :) I really can't say much more! (Why do you always do that to me?! ;P)
    Friendship is one of the most valuable and amazing blessings anyone could get! I'm so glad that both of you have that blessing. I don't have a 'best friend', but I have many friends who are all so wonderful and make me a better person.
    And that last picture, combined with "God knew we needed each other".....thanks for making me an emotional mess, Emma. ;)
    Oh, and happy birthday Naomi! (Only don't feel obliged to say 'thanks' for the 1000th time for my sake! ;D)
    ~Miss Meg

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    Replies
    1. Yes, it's Ruth! I found that gif and was like, YES. :-)

      You're welcome, dear. It's my specialty.

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  10. Happy birthday, Naomi! We love you! :-)

    I know. It's true. Naomi has what they call Joie de Vivre. FOR REAL. It makes reading her blog posts sooooooooooooooo much fun.

    Beautiful, beautiful post, Emma!!! I know how you girls feel, because I moved far, far away from my best friend when we were both eight, and we've had to keep up our friendship through letters, email, etc. BUT we've managed it and we're STILL best friends (after, like, 14 years!!) and I'm SO grateful for her. She's awesome. God has been very good to us. Just like you said :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Joie de Vivre". I like that!

      Ohh, so you KNOWWWWW. Yes, it can be hard. ;-P I'm so glad you still keep in contact with your best friend though! That's amazing. God is very good to us!

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  11. Awww Emma!!! SO sweet! HAPPY BIRTHDAY NAOMI

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  12. Daaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwww :D

    You guys are just the cutest. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, NAOMI! Thanks for this post, Emma! :)

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    Replies
    1. D'aaaaawwwwwww, shucks. Thanks, Olivia. :-)

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  13. Happy Birthday Naomi!

    Thank you Emma for writing the post. After reading this post, I think it is perfect that you put a picture of Anne and Diana at the bottom.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comment, Ekaterina! Yes, I thought it was the perfect picture too -- Naomi and I like to imagine ourselves like Anne and Diana. :-)

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  14. This is one of the most gorgeous, sweet birthday posts I have EVER read!!! I think you just made me like Naomi about 17 million times more than I already do. haha (And I already liked her a lot ;))
    The part about her grandma and you telling her she needs to get outside made me giggle. HAPPY 17TH, NAOMI!!!

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  15. And ohhh, I always seem to forget to include these sort of remarks in my comments, but your new header!!! Could it get anymore gorgeous?? This is definitely one of my top favorites of your headers. Of all time. :)

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    1. Me too. :-) I keep experimenting with different styles, but I'm pretty sure this one is a keeper.

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I'd love it if you'd drop me a line or two! I always enjoy receiving comments from readers and friends. I ask that you please keep your comments clean and God-honoring, and please don't write anything you wouldn't want your grandmother to read. Also, if you are commenting under anonymous, please do leave your name (or some sort of moniker so that you aren't totally nameless). Thank you so much and have a lovely day!

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