2) Start Something
Towards the end of 2009, Doodle member Pattie decided that she wanted to do something in the next decade to “become a better woman.” So she gathered some friends – some who knew each other and some who didn’t – and asked them if they wanted to form a group who would meet monthly to learn, encourage, create and share with each other. In essence she formed what I call “intentional friendships.” She had the courage to step out and invite others into her life in a way that was very purposeful. She and the other Doodles made a commitment to each other to meet once a month, to walk through life together.
If you read this blog ( if you read A Homemade Year) regularly, then you know how I have a thing for intentional friend groups. That I believe strongly in stepping out of my comfort zone in pursuit of community. I love that Pattie decided to do this as well. Sometimes friendship groups sort of spontaneously form, but more often then not, they have to be intentionally created and this means someone has to be the one to step up and invite others into community.
I also love that Pattie challenged herself. That she wanted to “do something to make myself a better woman.” How brave and kind she was in this. And I am pretty sure that each of the Doodles would agree that this group has made each of them a better woman.
3) Keep Learning
For some of the gals gatherings they give each other lessons. Cooking lessons, canning lessons, stamping lessons. Sometimes they have other people come in and teach them things. I love this. I have a hard time being teachable (just ask Sweet Man.) I hate looking stupid. I like to figure things out on my own, with no one watching. Of course there is tons of research to support that people learn better in groups. That encouragement and healthy competition is good for learning. I want to be like the Doodles. I want to keep learning and I want to be willing to do it, even if it makes me look silly or goofy or just plain inept, in front of my friends. Because really, who better to fail in front of then the very people who will help pick you up, laugh it off, and start again?
4) Keep Creating
The Doodles are so creative. And listening to them talk you could tell that this is something that help encourage in each other. Sarah is a grandmother but her house is still so fresh and vibrant and full of things that are “out of the box” design wise. She is changing and creating and experimenting and stretching herself still. I want to be like that no matter my age, no matter my situation.
5) Laughter Never Goes Out of Style
We should never feel that we are too old, too mature, too cool, too sophisticated, or too pious to laugh. Really, really laugh. Laugh till we cry. Laugh all together. Laugh at ourselves. Put down the phone, the tablet, the computer, your cynicism, your expectations, your disappointments, and look up. Look into the faces around you. Listen to their stories. Tell your own stories. And laugh. A lot.