Wrap Me, Tape Me

It all started with a Facebook post. “Done Christmas shopping. Who wants to wrap? It’s out of my skillz range,” she wrote.

Well I do. I like to wrap. So I wrote back and invited her to come over. (The let’s-take-action reply.) Usually this is the point where people don’t take me up on an offer and everyone politely smiles. But she said yes! And then another friend said she wanted to come. And then another.  Now we’re having a Wrap Me, Tape Me party Friday night!

Mom! The dog won't stop licking me!

Mom! The dog won’t stop licking me!

I immediately started thinking about the last time I had my friends over to my house. I think it was for a baby shower four years ago. I meet up with friends, but I rarely ask them over. It’s not that I don’t want them to come over. It’s not that I’m particularly busy with other outside commitments. I spend my evenings cooking less-than-Betty-Crocker-level dinners, playing taxi for evening activities, cleaning, picking up after the kids, reviewing homework, checking in on friends via social media, playing referee for TV programming choices, getting bedtime underway, etc.

Aha! This is exactly why “come over” is not at the top of my list. Do my single, child free friends really want to come over and spend a Friday evening with two unpredictable kids who are often messy and have been known to interrupt every conversation? Maybe they do. Maybe they just don’t know what they are getting into. Shhh! Don’t tell.

Either way, I am really looking forward to having them in my home. It will be disruptive chaos — a big change from our traditional happy hour environment. But the hubs is making some appetizers, a friend is bringing wine, and maybe — just maybe — the Wrap Me, Tape Me party will become a tradition. I know, I’m getting a little over zealous. I’ll try to keep a lid on the enthusiasm. It’s just been so long since I’ve had friends over!

The twins

At the start of my college career I met twins from a small town in Kansas. We lived down the hall from each other in a female-only dorm. The three of us quickly became inseparable. We shared secrets. We shared adventures, some in a foreign country. We laughed – a lot.

After losing touch for several years, one of the twins sent me a message on Facebook: “You should know you were instrumental in helping me become ‘me’ back in college – I look back on our time together and you truly helped me feel good in my own skin and push my boundaries.”

I could not have been more shocked when I read her message. I did that? Back in the day, we were goofballs just trying to get our footing in life. I had forgotten that my actions – everyone’s actions – no matter how big or small, good or bad…our actions make ripples, and ripples can become waves.

I thanked her for those words, and I did then what I should have done years ago. I told her how much she meant to me. Now as I write this post, I realize two more years have slipped by. But the great thing about true friendship is that you can pick up where you left off. BRB. I’m going to check in on my friend.

When I grow up

Yesterday I had lunch with John, who was my boss nine years ago. I remember sitting in his office with my to-do list, reporting “Green Light” or “Yellow Light” for each project on my platter. Little did I know that we would see each other through job and life changes for years to come – some drastic, some mundane.

When our food was gone, we realized that even though our bios are stuffed with words like team leader and national expertise, we have yet to figure out what we want to be when we grow up. I’ve added that to my to-do list, and my first step in the daunting journey was to create this blog. Welcome to offbeatkitten.com. I promise great times ahead.

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