It’s so easy getting caught up in your big family routine, that sometimes your much-adored community of friends can be put on the back burner. Having strong social ties are very important to us as a family, so we actually do make it a priority to incorporate our friends into our already busy lives.
We move quite a lot, but when we make friends, we put so much effort into maintaining those relationships. When I find my sisterhood or shall I say community you better believe I hold on tight to them. What’s so interesting is that our friends do the same. They too put in the efforts to spend time together. It’s the only way it can work.
We moved recently about ten minutes away from a community we have been part of for the past 2 1/2 years. Luckily for us, we will still be very part of that community as it’s where our business is. At first we were nervous these friendships would slowly dissipate, but the truth is they are as strong now, as they were then.
I think what it boils down to is you have to decide how important are these people in your life. How much do you value having friends? We all know our families come first, but to be quite honest these friendships have become more like extended family members. I can count on any of these families to be here if I needed them for anything and vice versa. We have never been the type of people who can take it or leave it when it comes to friendships. We truly love our people and that’s what they are, “our people.”
Sure it’s been challenging with those I left behind in NYC and in North Carolina, but we still call, make the time and actually visit. We usually get 6 plus families a year that visit from the East Coast, and it’s completely normal for us.
Here are some ways we keep up with our community of friends:
1. Get Together: Some of the ways we like to keep up with our friends is having brunches every other Sunday. We can’t get over the turn out of people each time we host a brunch and we certainly have a good time. My kids also adore their friends and we make sure they keep up with their community of little people too. I guess we have done well with making friends and certainly love those that make an effort to keep us in their lives too. It’s a community I proudly choose to nurture.
2. Do something without the kids: Each week I meet with a girlfriend and we go on a beach walk then try a new restaurant for breakfast. It’s such a refreshing two hours and we both leave smiling from ear to ear! Another friend of mine likes to meet me in Little Italy after Italian school and we love to walk around taking in all the Italian festivities. I love squeezing in “girl” time.
3. Plan your weekends with your family AND your friends: This one is for sure the best. Every weekend we can count on being with our neighborhood friends. Whether our house, or their’s, I know we will be together.
4. Plan trips: Twice a year we go away with our neighborhood family friends, whether it be Cabo or Big Bear, its something that you can guarantee we are doing. The memories we are making for all of the kids is superb, and the adult fun has us laughing for days.
5. Be kind to all: Sure, there will be people who you are closer too than others, but the truth is if they are a social media friend, someone I go to the mall with, someone who has the same age kids, someone who is single, whoever they are, they are all of equal importance to me because they all add warmth and color to my world. I love and appreciate all the friendships we have made along the way, the days are sure brighter knowing so many wonderful people.
What do you do to foster relationships with friends? I would love to hear from you!