Today I’m your hostess for “Friendship Friday” on The Friendship Project blog tour. This new book from Michele Faehnle and Emily Jaminet (Ave Maria Press, 2017) inspires women to foster friendships based on holy virtues.
It’s hard, as grownups, to make new friends. We moms often find ourselves in superficial relationships with other moms — because our children are in the same class, on the same team, or involved in some other activity together. Those sideline friendships have their place, but when you don’t talk about much besides what’s happening on the soccer field in front of you, such friendships don’t satisfy.
Michele and Emily’s book challenges readers to find ways to develop deeper friendships. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that if you want a deeper friendship, you’ll need to look beyond the sidelines of your children’s activities. Not that it could never happen, but the ideal starting point is a common interest that goes beyond what the kids are doing. Spiritual friendships need to come from your own heart, and they need to be nurtured regularly. The Friendship Project tells you how, complete with personal stories to encourage you and tales of friendships among the saints to inspire you.
I am blessed to have a group of friends who get together a couple of times a week. Our common interest: we’re musicians at Sunday Mass. Every Wednesday night we get together at my house for
rehearsal music therapy (our only instruments are guitars and bass, so we don’t have to rehearse in church, and if someone needs to bring the kids, it’s easier this way). Yes, we practice. But before, after, and in between working on intros and harmonies and making sure we all hit the right notes at the right times, we work on our friendship. We laugh together, worry about kids together, share advice, and discuss our opinions on current events. We talk about our faith, how we can and should live it out in public, and what Jesus meant when He said some of the things He said. Sometimes there are 7 of us having 3 conversations at once; other times we’re all focused on one thing. And not a week goes by that one of us doesn’t mention how much we really needed to be there.
We celebrate birthdays, because that’s what friends do — in our case, that’s with a homemade card, a peppy version of the “happy birthday” song, and a sweet treat with a birthday candle on top.
For more than a decade, I’ve opened my home every Wednesday night to my folk-group friends. I don’t worry about having a picture-perfect living room anymore. As long as we have enough room on the coffee table for two binders of sheet music, we’re good to go. And birthday treats might be cake, but they’re more likely to be brownies (from a box) or something simple like my go-to scone recipe.
This is a dressed-up version of a recipe I learned from my Granma, who baked scones, or “biscuits” as she called them, every Sunday morning to feed the drop-in guests who would arrive after Mass. Granma knew how to do Sunday hospitality right. It didn’t matter that the kitchen table still had the flour bag front and center — there was always room for the teapot too, and always enough tea for the friends and relatives who stopped by.
Bake a batch of these for your friends. They’re delicious at any time of day.
Makes 16 scones
2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1 stick butter or margarine, at room temperature (not melted)*
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup milk**
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Mix all ingredients. Batter shouldn’t stick to fingers (add more flour if necessary). For best results, mix by hand-–I dump the semi-mixed dough onto a floured tabletop and knead it a bit–but only a few times.
Pat dough into a rough rectangle and cut into 16 wedges.
Bake 20 minutes at 350. Allow to cool on the pan.
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 TBL milk (add more if needed, a tiny bit at a time)
Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Place cooled scones on a sheet of waxed paper. Spoon icing onto scones and spread to cover.
*Granma always used margarine, claiming that butter was “too extravagant,” which was probably a throwback to having lived through World War II’s rationing of things like butter.
**The quantity of milk is variable. Granma never used a measuring cup. If you accidentally put in too much milk, just add a little more flour. This is a “go by the feel of it” kind of recipe.
Copyright 2017 Barb Szyszkiewicz, OFS
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