Girls Night In

“Choices, life is all about choices” is a common phrase you can often hear my mom saying.  She does make a good point, some choices are simple and have relatively little impact on our life, like what colour socks you wear, it’s a choice with no real life long effects, others are more influential and have a longer lasting impact. Things like how much you drink in a night, the hobbies you choose or the friends you associate with. This is not luck, it is a choice you make.    

I am so proud of the friendships I have cultivated and the people I choose to associate with. Each one of these women represent traits and things that I want for my own life and my kids lives, these are the role models I want to have my kiddos to look up to!  I am blessed to have a tight group of girlfriends, and although we may not see each other as much as we might like we all play pretty big roles in each other’s lives!  We are aunties to each other’s children, mentors, sounding boards, therapists and/or drinking buddies when needed. We are a self made family. 

This weekend we had planned a girls night in, instead of going out we had a catered dinner. Knowing how busy each of us are I took it upon myself to just get it catered and have us all split the bill! This was genius if I do say so, it meant no mess, no dishes, easy clean up and best of all no stress! Just show up.  Newman’s Fine Foods was so great at putting together a beautiful charcuterie platter for us as an appie.   Illuminate Restorante in Tsawwassen was equally accommodating and easy to work with, the best part was the food was delicious.  

I think so often we get wrapped up in making things perfect or not attempting to do something in case we can’t do it well enough. I know I definitely do.  However, with this night I kept reminding myself less is more, it is about the people and getting together not where we have it or what the menu is. So in an effort to simplify and give up a little control I trusted the chef and asked him to design a menu that would be seasonal and work for everyone. He did a great job and I didn’t have to do anything (not even make a decision).  I know maybe this isn’t for everyone or isn’t always possible but the point isn’t get a caterer, it’s don’t get too wrapped up in the details… grab bags of chips and snacks, go to Costco and get some party trays, order pizza. It doesn’t matter just get together!  Make time away from kids and hubbies and share some laughs and fun with your gals:). Nobody cares what your eating (rather what’s in your glass) J/K! 

I had planned a beautiful outdoor evening at one of my favourite spots but the weather prevented it from happening. So, in true friendship fashion one of the gals offered up her barn.  Some of you may wonder why I was hosting a dinner in a barn when I have a beautiful newly renovated home… so many reasons but a big one is this was a night for the girls and we all have roommates ( I actually have 4) AKA hubbies and kids. So the best way to get away for a dinner and enjoy a night of laugher and recharging was to break in our new “clubhouse”. 

The night could not have been more perfect. It was so fun to just sit, enjoy good food, drinks and best of all the company of, as one of the ladies refers to us, “the loves of our lives”. It was a really good reminder no matter how busy you are take time out to spend it with the people that matter to you!  It’s amazing how good it can be for the soul. 

My favourite thing about the evening was actually a little exercise we did ahead of time. I had asked everyone to email one word beside each girlfriends name, when the gals sat down to dinner they had a sheet of paper with 10 beautiful words describing them. We actually went around the table and shared our words, which truly was a highlight.  I have to admit there were many words on those pages that made me proud of my tribe. The best part was the repetition of a few words. One really stood out as I think 7 out of 10 of us had LOYAL down.  I think that says a lot to see the same word given by so many and about so many different woman. 

Another special treat for the night was the party favours. Not only did one of our girlfriends make each of the gals some funny and fabulous wine glasses with hilarious sayings (these will be available at our Christmas Market from Westham Jar Co.) she also had homemade marshmallows and fudge (check out Farmhouse Floral & Gifts, also at our Christmas Market) done up for each of us!  I loved the idea of having some favours so when she suggested it I jumped on board and added a room spray with a custom scent I made with oils that carry certain properties I felt we were all in need of right now!  The reaction was amazing to all of these goodies:)  Check out my instagram if you want my “secret” room spray recipe.  The best part is that we actually have favours still coming as another girlfriend has commissioned a local jewelry designer to make custom friendship bracelets with different stones and charms that hold meaning to her and to us.  This night is really the night that just keeps on giving. 

I can’t forget to mention my favourite gift though, it was something I was a little unsure about at first. I had thought about asking Daph if she could come and snap a couple photos and then wasn’t sure if that was weird.  Like, we aren’t the Kardashians (almost but not quite) and why does a girls night need a photographer?  Plus we all have iPhones right?  First, iphones do not substitute a photographer (see pictures below and you will understand!).  Second, a girls night needs a photographer because how often does Mom get into the pictures?  Not very often in my experience Mom is usually the photographer.  Also how nice is it Sunday morning to wake up and see these beautiful reminders of what a fabulous evening we had.  So Thank You Daphne Lynn Photography (did I mention she will also be at the Christmas Market).  I also was a little worried having a photographer there would maybe ruin the vibe we were going for but I think she was the perfect addition to our party:) 

So, in an effort to remind myself of this night and the feelings I left it with I decided to use this as an opportunity to check in with myself more.  Am I living life with purpose? Do I stay true to my values? It was a good reminder to me that when you give of yourself what you get in return is so much more.  I might have spent a little time putting this together but what these women gave me in return was so far greater!  I woke up the next morning feeling groggy (maybe a little hungover), so loved, so supported, so blessed and energized. It was exactly the check in that I needed.  Whenever you are feeling overwhelmed and like life is too busy what do you do to recharge and gain balance and perspective?  I know what I do and who I go to!  And this was exactly what I needed and when I needed it. 

THANK YOU LADIES!

XO Carly   

Location: Private Farm, Westham Island

Caterer: Newmans Fine Foods & Illuminate Restauranto

Photographer: Daphne Lynne Photographer

Decor: This Plain Life, Westham Jar Co.  And Farmhouse Floral & Gifts

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