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There’s really nothing like a good cup of coffee and a great friend to warm your heart and soul. Lately things have been a bit hectic and stressful, and the other day I took a time-out and met up with my best friend, Courtney, for a very long overdue coffee date. Life gets so very busy, and it had been quite some time since we were last able to get together, but the short hour or two that we spent chatting over coffee, and in person, did wonders to lighten my heart. Never underestimate the power of friendship and the impact it can make in your life.

I may technically be an only child, but I consider Courtney to be my handpicked sister. I have been blessed to call her my best friend for at least 16 years or so. And I realize it sounds corny and cliché, but I really have no idea where I’d be without her. And that’s the honest truth. We’ve been through thick and thin, shared lots and lots of laughter, more than enough tears, and our fair share of crazy stories. For all intents and purposes she IS my sister.

As I said, life has a tendency to get crazy and demanding, particularly when careers and kiddos are involved; and we may not get to see each other as often as we’d like, but we still keep in touch just about every day. Our correspondence is full of the usual friend stuff: comical stories, seeking/giving advice or support, day to day stuff, or nothing in particular at all. In fact, it’s not unusual to get a message in the middle of the night because one of us needs to vent about our day – or sometimes because neither of us has a memory anymore and if we don’t hit send, we’ll forget whatever it is by morning.

In some ways we are just alike, and in others, complete opposites. Our personalities complement each other well. We have remarkable talents for talking one another off the ledge, stoking the fire, or making each other laugh (depending on what the circumstance may call for). Regardless though, we always have a good time when together. And if we’re out in public (especially a restaurant) we’re easy to spot because we’re the ones talking and laughing a bit too loudly. We can’t help it.

They say good friends are hard to come by. If this is true, I have been exceptionally lucky. I have many wonderful friends. And I’m especially fortunate to call one of them my sister – despite the lack of any blood relation.

So Courtney, here’s to you! (Surprise; haha!) Not a day goes by that I’m not thankful for our friendship. Over the years we have seen each other through every milestone, celebration, heartache, and everything in between. Thank you for always being there. This roller coaster of life wouldn’t be nearly as fun without you by my side screaming and throwing your hands up with me.