With life as full as it is these days, I can’t decide if the bigger struggle is to make a plan ahead of time or to spontaneously have a get together!

Both are tough because things get in the way. Many people want to leave a little time for breathing room, and because committing to plans just seems like… too much commitment. Spontaneous plans are also terrifying because we get tied up in not being ready, wearing the right outfit for it, or thinking we should probably take this moment to be doing something else.

Keep Inviting Me, Please

Some of you, though, are great at making plans and throwing out fun spontaneous activities to the rest of us. We might not always accept them, but please keep doing it.

I have two friends in particular who are amazing at sharing events and experiences that others might like or sending out a last-minute invitation to take or leave (no hard feelings either way.

Sharing Relevant Events

One friend, who happens to be a writer here at the Ventura County Mom Collective also. She is the best at inviting me to local events, especially those for writing and dancing, which we both love.  She (and another friend) have been inviting me to a dance class for the last several years. Seriously, years. Since it’s Saturday mornings, I’m almost always on the soccer field or basketball court with my son, so I have always sadly declined.  Last Saturday, I woke up and suddenly realized I had a free Saturday morning.  I ran down to the class and had the best time.  The joy I felt at finally being able to accept the invitation and knowing that these women had kept it open for literally years, with no judgment that I hadn’t made it, made it all the more joyful.

Spontaneous Outings

Another friend is excellent at sending a quick text offering to meet for a drink or hike, apropos of nothing.  Recently, she asked if we wanted to meet at a local cantina in 20 minutes. I said, I would have loved to, but I had a long list of things I had to do, on a short timeline.  When I picked up my son a few minutes later, he talked me into changing my mind (surely it would be quicker than – ugh- cooking!) and I called her back to say, “changed my mind, I’ll see you in 10”.   She said she always sees the value in putting something out there last minute, that sometimes it’s easier than making long term plans. You either can make it or not, and if you can, it’s a quick bright spot in a potentially dark day.

Thank You for Being That Friend

It’s okay not to be the planner. It’s okay to be too jangled to even remember how to have friends. But seriously… Thank you to those of you who invite others to events, share occasions that other friends would like, text for a walk or a drink.  Thank you to those of you who throw the parties, offer your house for a casual coffee or dinner, or let others know when you will be spending a morning at a coffee shop in case anyone wants to stop by.

Thank you to those that don’t hold any judgment when friends like me don’t show up. Thank you for continuing to invite us. Thank you for the hugs and joyful shouts when we finally do show up. It means the world.


two friends

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Gia is a native Californian who has lived all over the state from San Diego to Trinity County, plus Washington DC for a short time. She recently relocated to Ventura County with her family to build a compound property together with her sister’s family so that they could always share wardrobes and parenting responsibilities for their 5 combined children at home. Gia graduated from UCSB with a degree in Linguistics (which she thinks entitles her to make up words). It took her just three years, as she was eager to graduate early to go live with her long distance boyfriend and his toddler daughter at the time. That seemed to work out, as the boyfriend got promoted to husband years ago and her step-daughter promoted her to grandmother recently! Gia’s husband is from East Africa and runs their Bed and Breakfast in Tanzania from near and far. Gia is a Human Resources Director who has a major obsession with watermelon and eggnog lattes, depending on the season.


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