It's becoming a trend for us... weekend barbecues with people we don't really know but would like to. Last night was no exception. We grilled bratwurst; hot ones for the brave, mild for the not so brave (read: ME), with sauted red bell peppers and onions. For the kids - hotdogs. I made sweet tea, a tossed salad, grilled potatoes and onions, and fresh veggies with dip. We topped off the night with Blueberry Surprise ( You WANT that recipe!!) It was the perfect, unassuming meal.
Our company was wonderful - relaxed, easy to talk to people. They have kids that got along great with our kids... it was fun. Lots of talking and laughing, realizing we were fairly compatible friends, and promises of getting together again soon.
I know this is going to shock some of you.. but I am naturally shy. I am not super comfortable with people I don't know well and it isn't the easiest thing for me to have strangers in my home. But, I am getting so much better at it. Daniel would be the first to tell you that. I just keep putting myself out there - keep putting myself in situations where I really have to extend beyond my comfort zone. I can't afford to be shy! I need friends - friends who will be my family where ever we are currently stationed.
I find that my best offense, in this ongoing battle with myself, is to pretend. I pretend I am super comfortable, super relaxed, super outgoing... And guess what! Suddenly I am! I am finding I have to pretend less and less often. I am becoming the extrovert I've always wished I could be.
About those beautiful flowers... I needed a centerpiece to go with a white table cloth. I had the beautiful green bowl and I had a few roses from my rose bushes, but I needed more. So, I visited the unoccupied house next door whose rose bushes I trim. I clipped a few from there. I needed just a few more so I visited another unoccupied home. I clipped three more... Perfection.
A beautiful, free centerpiece. And let me just tell you - it smelled a hundred times more beautiful than it looked.