Warning: this post is STUPID with memes from The Hills. Because it is dedicated to my best friend. And we still continue to be friends even though The Hills is her favorite show.
So remember that supersecret Pinterest project I set up with this post a couple months ago? No? Where have YOU been?
Kidding. But really, I mentioned a project I was working on but had to wait to share because there were a lot of moving parts and I didn’t want any spoiler alerts on the receiving end of the project.
In July my best friend who I’ve known since I was 6 years old moved to Houston to start a graduate program. There’s something to be said for someone who’s been able to not only stand me for 21 (and counting!) years, but consider me a near and dear friend. I’m not the easiest person to be friends with; Ashley knows this. Yet, here we are, making it work! *snap snap*
We met in the first grade. I don’t remember how. I am positive that Ashley approached me first because she’ll talk to anyone and can carry a conversation about anything and pretend to be really interested in it. Even if she wants to tell you what a giant waste of life you are.
She has always run interference for me, never seeing my awkwardness or shyness as a weakness.
It’s corny to call her my sister-friend, but she is. More sister than friend. As an only child, that is so valuable and as a human to have a connection like that with someone, related or not, isn’t ordinary. I am so lucky.
It was scary for me to find out that she was moving because it meant change, and I don’t do change. Even change that I intellectually know is for the better, I still fight it. Her decision speaks a lot to what a majority of my circle of friends are doing: They’re growing up. Or at least trying to. Buying Homes. Building careers. Going back to school. I knew Ashley and I would grow up some day, but it never occurred to me until then that there might come a time when we wouldn’t be growing up together.
When she decided she was moving, I started to think about what I’d get her as a going away gift. I have a bad track record when it comes to gifts and she’s been on the receiving end of a lot of them. I think she just likes to think of those gifts as “quirky.”
I knew she wouldn’t want a going away gift, and it’s kind of pointless to give someone who is moving across the country a photo album, coffee mug or Yankee candle they now have to haul with them. I mean who’s to say she wasn’t going to toss it out of the window somewhere in between the Grand Canyon and Austin? It would’ve been one more thing for her to worry about as she packed up her entire life so instead I thought a housewarming gift that could be delivered to her new place would be more appropriate.
I stumbled across a birthday postcard poster project and the idea stuck with me. It could really be used for any special occasion and I couldn’t think of any more special of a way to settle into a new life in a new city than having your first mail pieces be postcards from your far away friends.
The basic premise of the project is that a print is broken out into post card sized prints to form a sort of puzzle. Family members and friends each get a card to send to the recipient and as the recipient gets them in the mail one by one she not only gets a nice note but a piece of the puzzle.
I commissioned this great graphic designer, Lindsay, whose print I’d bought for my friend Jackie. I shared the postcard poster idea with her and she was so jazzed to do it! She now sells that print in her shop, Unraveled Design, on Etsy. She also does photography and branding and should I really get serious about building a personal brand (aka making this blog real), I’ll likely be working with her. I asked everyone to take a photo with their post card and send them to me so I could document the project.
For Ashley’s print, I used an A.A. Milne quote that I’ve always liked. Lindsay created a design around it and broke it out into postcards.
Below are some of the photos.
It was really awesome to see the print go from an idea that I e-mailed Lindsay with to this finished product.
**Right here was supposed to a nice Instagram photo of Ashley standing next to her poster, giving a thumbs up or something. I didn’t account for human error when I started writing this piece two months ago…And by human error I mean, she didn’t get all of the cards!**
Yeeeeah. She got five, maybe six of the post cards. Thanks you losers who didn’t send yours. Kidding! Sort of.
Anyway, thanks to these ladies, the project wasn’t a complete failure-I mean, it’s still nice to get mail….right?
In theory, it was a cool project. A lot of moving pieces, but fun to put together.
Since Lindsay sells the print in her shop, I’m just going to buy her the print. User error: neutralized!
I didn’t send her off completely empty handed though. I made her a mix CD of top 100 hits (according to Billboard) from every year that we’ve known each other. I had been thinking of making her a mix already, but one day on my way to work the idea of a “trip through the hits” type mix just came to me. I’ve known Ashley since 1991, so you could maybe imagine there’s some Ace of Base, Mariah, Bone Thugs, TLC and Montell Jordan, who I until recently did not know was a different person than the talk show host.
Anyway, this type of mix CD could work for any kind of milestone or celebration and researching the Billboard hits of the past is almost more fun than shopping a discount wine sale.
While I’m so sad that we’re not within happy hour distance, I am so proud of her for taking such a big step in a positive direction. What’s that lame thing they say about parting ways not being goodbye?
Until next time.