Thursday, August 5, 2010

Old friends...Bookends...

Remember that Simon and Garfunkel song? Some of your will, some of you won't and I am giving away my age!  To tell the truth, I don't know the lyrics beyond these four words. I thought about it tonight and old friends truly are like "bookends" in our lives. Old friends seem be a container for your "book" of shared history and only the ones who are characters in the story will totally understand. 

These special people are our dear friends, Di and Iver, from South Dakota. These friends (of bicycling marathons and organic gardening, totally unlike us) have been an important part of our lives for almost forty years now and we cherish them both. 

We shared a wonderful evening, celebrating  Di's birthday. Jud, Kat and I gave Di a necklace with a silver piece on it that says, "Live Out Loud" because Di does just that. Iver says she has a connection that goes instantaneously from her brain to her mouth. You always hear exactly how she feels (though never in a cruel manner). I really like that quality in a good friend. 

Our friend, Roger, called Iver a Renaissance man who knows as much about a grain of dirt as an elegant scientific model. He grew up on a farm in North Dakota and became an ER doctor. He has a great sense of humor and loves to laugh. Iver and Jud can talk politics and current events for hours. He and Di love to attend the opera. That puzzled me until I started listening to the music myself. Now I am beginning to understand. I learn a lot from them.

They have two daughters, Megan and Kirsten,  that are dearly loved by all the Reaney's. On the right you see Megan, beloved friend of Kat, surrogate daughter of Jud and Suz. On the left, you see Drew, Megan's partner, a very serious young man ;-).  He has all but his dissertation completed in Philosophy. He and I share a serious interest in candy and could probably discuss it for an entire evening. Megan and Drew are sharing a little private joke that obviously amuses them both. A great deal.

Here we have our dear Megan and Momma Sue or "Soup" (coined by Kirsten). Megan is an MD. How would you like to see that fresh, young face enter your hospital room?  She may look young but you would be a lucky patient. She is incredibly intelligent, a grounded scientist of medicine AND kind and empathetic. To me, though, she is, first and foremost, my Meggie, another daughter. She once joined the Reaneys on a trip to Australia. She organized our finances and washed her tee-shirts inside out each night and hung them up to dry (she was a responsible fourteen). She lived with us one summer and is the one person, older or younger, who can make me act the most silly. I do not do this without Meggie. It is her fault. 

Di and I were pregnant at the same time and Kat was supposed to come a week before Megan. It was the middle of August in the Black Hills and neither of us could afford an air conditioner. Di annoyed me to no end by delivering a whole TWO WEEKS before me! I am still mad at her! 

The girls have been dear friends since birth and do we ever have great stories to tell on them! We will save the most incriminating ones for their children. I will tell you a bit about the time we flew Megan to St.Paul as a surprise for Kat's birthday and wrapped her in a big box in the back yard (don't worry, friends, just for a very short time!) Kat had just turned seven and we took her out and showed her this huge present that had a giant bow and a poem, written by Jud...

"To early birthday presents, Dad usually says, 'Oh, pshaw!'
But here is something you can take with you to Camp Wabasha"

Katie guessed it was a backpack. Out popped Megan. Much hugging and laughing ensued. Megan spent the week and the two of them attended a science/drama/math "city" camp. Even Jud and I can call out the camp cheer to this day. 

What a delightful memory!

Jud looked at me longingly all evening. I think he was falling madly in love with me all over again or was hoping he could convince me to break the rules of our South Beach Diet and share a fabulous dessert with him. I lean toward the second interpretation. We settled for lattes with skim and Splenda and pretended they were chocolate/peanut butter mousse.

It was an evening of much laughter and celebration. An evening to always remember. Another chapter in the shared history of two families. Friends for nearly four decades. 

Old friends...Bookends. (Simon and Garfunkel) 



  1. How wonderful! Old (as in length of friendship) friends are just the best! And I loved your vinettes on each person. I am so glad you are still enjoying each other so much! If my Mark looked at me like that, I think I would give in and go for ice cream.
    Loving Blessings,
    ~ Katie

  2. What a sweet post. So many wonderful blessings-thanks for sharing them!!! I agree with the post above. I would give in in a heart beat to that sweet face longing for dessert!!!!

  3. With so much shared history between the families, you all make up one BIG happy family. Through good times and bad, families keep us grounded. I'm so happy that you have such a caring, sweet family...and fun-loving too!

  4. Wow what a sweet tribute to friendship. I remember a long time ago my mom told me you're really lucky to have one or two friends in your life that would do anything for you. Good friends are precious.

  5. Hi Suz. Good friends are indeed precious! I adore your post and photos, great times shared with even greater friends. Thank you for stopping by today and sharing a sweet comment!~ Angela

  6. precious post thank you for sharing your very special and delightful friends with us ... beautiful!!!

  7. What a sweet post and you are so lucky to have such old friends!

  8. What a wonderful time and what a wonderful history you share with these special friends of yours. We have old friends that we are also very close too and love to do things with.
    Heres to Friendship! Cheers!
    have a great week!

  9. I love all your posts, but this one giving us a glimpse into your relationship with dear friends, is especially wonderful...

  10. Hi Suz, what a lovely post. Decades old friends are so special. It is great to have them in our lives. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving such a warm message Suz. Take care, Riki

  11. What a special friendship you share! The kind that lasts forever!

  12. My "lifetime friends" don't live near by, but when we finally get a chance to be together, its just like it ever was.

    Your time sounds wonderful!

  13. Oh...Best friends, old friends...are the best. What I love most is that you don't have to give the history of how & why you are you. They are already know...they were there!!!
    Sounds like a lovely evening friend!
    You had asked about the brown copper penny wire. Go to etsy & look for Studio on the Hill, she finishes copper wire & it gives it the greatest patina, just like a wonderful old penny!!!
    Smiles Friend,

  14. Hi there,
    Thanks for stopping by my "place" recently. I enjoyed this Post. You're right...old friends are like a comfortable pair of old shoes...the favorite ones. : )
    I loooooved your daughter's vintage flower-brooch necklace. It turned out amazing!!!
    Have a good week,

  15. Hello Ladies!!! I finally have my computer back and am desperately trying to catch up with everyone. Oh my, have you two been busy. I loved all the beautiful swaps, wishing I could have been in on the Paris one, BEE-U-TIFUL!, Every last piece, and the steampunk one, and the new header? Love it. And all your new jewelry, and looks like Kat had a wonderful time on her trip, now I am desperately trying to recall all my Spanish...

    I am still thinking I will run into you sometime at an Art Fair or show. I am on the lookout! Hope you enjoy the rest of the summer, this humidity is unbelievable, even for Minnesota!

  16. How wonderful for you all.
    Indeed old friends are a special treasure in one's life.

  17. ok Jud! are you the sweetest guy ever! freaking adorable "keeper" for sure!