I’m a part of a really great group of regional (Northwest Arkansas) bloggers who have banded together to use our voices to share causes that are important to us. This is our second year of #NWARKcares-ing and I’m so excited to be starting it off with this important day – National Friendship Day. I want to share four things that are true for me about friendship in your mid twenties. And let me know in the comments if these are/were true for you, or what other things are! Friendship is hard, we can all learn from each other to be better friends and to be better at making new friends!
Four things about friendship in your mid-20’s:
- Your college friends become ‘old’ friends – the best kind of friends. Old friends have been around for awhile and you don’t have to worry that they’ll ditch the friendship anymore. No matter how far away you live, you can text them for advice – and visit them – and be grown ups together. Not just the grown ups you thought you were when you were 18,19, and 20 – but real ones with jobs and interesting lives and thoughts to share with each other. My newly old friends are my best friends because they’ve known me long enough that I know I can share anything with them and they’ll stick with me.
- You can stop being friends with people obligatorily. In your younger years you are friends with people to be nice. My mom used to ensure that I invited my whole class to parties and gave everyone in my class a valentine. You could have favorites, but you had to include everyone. It’s a good thing when you’re young to learn to get along with and appreciate everyone. But when you start to grow up, you can be choosier with the people you hang out with and that’s a good thing.
- Hanging out is harder. You aren’t in shared living space, on the same campus, or sharing similar schedules. You have to make an effort and plan things and connect with people on a regular basis with some amount of effort. It’s harder, but the friends are higher quality than those friends you had out of convenience.
- Meeting new friends is harder and more ‘specialized’. Seeking out potential friends means leaving your house, joining groups, spending time with strangers – and trying to find ones with similar interests.
Before I leave you with that sort of sweet and sour list of things about friendship in your mid-20’s, here’s some cool ways that I’ve made friends lately that you might try (at any age):
- Join a meetup or two. There’s groups with all kinds of interests on meetup from professional groups to outdoor adventurers to weird swinger folks. Find something that you’re into and go to the next meetup that group’s having. You might end up on a bike ride with a bunch of geriatric (and very nice) people with killer quads – but you might also meet your next best friend!
- Join a church. I’m a super atheist, but I’m also a member of the Unitarian Universalist church and have met my most like-minded friends there. Here’s a pretty awesome way to find out what religion your beliefs align with: Belief-O-Matic. (There’s also meetup groups for religious-ish interests.)
- Volunteer doing something that you think is cool. Volunteering might sound cheesy, but it’s really a good way to get to know other people with similar interests and passions. You might end up standing in a parking lot and freezing your butt off while you try to corral hundreds of cyclists, but you’ll also meet a whole bunch of other people who think bikes are cool!
If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, then surely you’ve seen Betty, our first ever foster dog. She is a sweet, older pit mix who will dance if you ask her if she wants to go on a w-a-l-k (I can’t say it out loud unless we’re really going so we’ve started spelling it in conversation) and sleep for hours by your side. If you’re looking for the companion of all companions, Betty’s your gal. She’s well trained, and kind to everyone she meets.
Betty is house trained, sits and stays on command, is easy to bathe, and won’t chew anything but food. If you have any questions about her behavior, just ask!
We think Betty is sweet, and the perfect dog for a student or older person – someone who might not have the time to exercise a younger dog but needs some love!
She will be at the Fayetteville Farmer’s Market in her little vest on Saturday mornings until she gets adopted, so come meet her there or send me a note to arrange a meet and greet with her. You can also contact Fayetteville Animal Services with any questions about their adoption process.
A friend recently asked where she could take a gluten free friend out to eat and have more options than a salad. I realized that I have learned a lot through trial and error that I should probably share with the world! I stick to a pretty strict gluten free diet, but I do not have Celiac disease – so many of these restaurants may not be suitable for someone who needs gluten free foods cooked in a dedicated gluten free environment. You decide what works for you, and here’s a list to get you started!
- Deluxe Burger has gluten free buns for their burgers. They’ll charge you a bit more for the substitute, but it’s so worth it to be able to go out and eat a delicious burger with the bun (like a “normal” person). General gluten free burger eating tips: If you are elsewhere and want a burger, it’s usually pretty easy to order one without a bun. They’ll usually serve it on a piece of lettuce or two and you can munch away with fork and knife. The greasier/cheaper the place, the harder it is to extricate the burger from the bun – so beware.
- The Arsaga’s on Church & Center that serves toast has a house made gluten free bread that’s phenomenal and can be subbed in on any of their amazing toast options for just .50 more!
- Arsaga’s at the Depot has a gluten free crepe that you can sub in to wrap up any of their delicious options (even their sweet crepe offerings). It’s their buckwheat crepe, which despite it’s name is actually wheat and gluten free.
- Eureka Pizza actually makes my favorite gluten free pizza. Their crust has honey in it to act as a binder and it’s just perfect. Plus, it’s pretty cheap – as far as a gluten free pizza goes!
- Woodstone Craft Pizza has a gluten free crust as well, and is a good option if you’re looking for something a little more upscale and unique. The crust is usually both rubbery and burned at the same time – but the toppings are so good that it’s worth trying anyway.
- Apple Blossom Brewing Co. has two excellent naturally gluten free options: cheese fries (of a few varieties) and a polenta dish with roasted vegetables.
- Khana Indian Grill‘s basmati plates are naturally gluten free. I have tried each one and love them all. The dish is served with naan, so you might ask to leave that out – or give it to someone else at your table (I might have tasted it once and discovered that it’s really, really good).
- Hammontree’s sometimes has gluten free bread available to sub in on any of their sandwiches. It isn’t on the menu, just ask.
I want to know what you know about eating gluten free in Fayetteville. I’m not eating out this month, but I’ll take all of your suggestions and seek them out in September!
If you already follow me on the insta, then you know that my boyfriend and I bought a house this month. We’ve been busy making all of the little changes that turn the house into home, and recovering from the stress that is housebuying turned homeownership. We’re super pleased not to be renters any more, and mostly, it’s been super fun.
Part of what’s so exciting about buying a house is the commitment. And I’m not just talking about the big deal that is buying a house with my boyfriend. I’m talking about committing to my community. I’m on #teamfayetteville in a whole new super hardcore way. I bought a little piece of the city that I’ve called home for all these years. We’re committing to living here, and caring about what happens here, and I think that’s super cool and super important. Don’t you?
What team are you on? Do you own your home? Did you feel like you were marrying your city when you bought a chunk of it like I did? Tell me about it in the comments!
Homegrown Music Festival was basically made for me, well – not really – but it sure feels that way. It’s all about all of the things that I’m all about; cycling, sustainability, music, camping, etc. Every new detail that I see pop up about the festival is another super exciting moment of anticipation building for me! If you don’t have your tickets yet, now’s a good time to grab them and make your plans to head down to the Mulberry this weekend.
The coolest way to get there is to join Phat Tire’s Pedal to Homegrown. The ride leaves from their Fayetteville bike shop and arrives at the festival tomorrow. They’ll tote your gear for you while you ride your bike down. It’s pretty much the coolest reason to ride that I can think of. So get pumped, get signed up, get your bike prepped, and I’ll see you there!
Even if you can’t get on your bike and head that way early tomorrow morning, there’s lots to see and do all weekend. There’s the amazing main stage schedule:
The pickin’ stage schedule:
The diggin’ in schedule full of fun things to do:
The thing that I’m most excited about is experiencing a super sustainable festival with festival-goers who are down with sustainability and opportunities to do all of the usual festival activities in a sustainable way. There will be reusable mess kits for everyone, a dish washing station, mobile bicycles with recycling bins toted behind them, and I almost don’t want to tell you about this one because I want to win: a most sustainable campsite competition!
I know it’s a lot of cool, almost too much to handle – but I think you can manage. See you at Homegrown this weekend!
In case you missed it, here’s some pictures and a few notes from our Fayetteville Little Free Library Bike Tour! We had so much fun toting the books all in our little bike trailer!
Talya’s Little Free Library (Washington St.)
Talya is a member of a blogger group that meets in my area. She also just published her first novel. Her library is especially neat because it has a seed exchange drawer in it! (There also might be a geocache hidden in/around it!) It’s multipurpose and super cute. We just had to stop by this one first!
Alison’s Little Free Library (Sutton St.)
I met Alison working at the Fayetteville Public Library where she is a super page extraordinaire. She also has a super cute library in her own front yard that just had to be on our list.
Arsaga’s Depot Little Free Library (Frisco Trail)
This library has been the drop off point for all of my donations prior to this tour and is something I peek at from my bike on my commute to work and back. It’s sponsored by Adventure Subaru, which is why it’s made out of car bits.
Little Free Library by the Library (Frisco Trail)
We weren’t able to find this library! Someone more enlightened about it’s location, help me out. Where exactly is it?
Pequeña Biblioteca (S. School Ave.)
I stumbled on this beautiful Little Free Library one afternoon when this tour was just a little idea I was having and knew it had to be on the tour. It was designed and built by Matthew Turner and Esteban Ayala in association with Harrison French & Associates, and is sponsored by Dick and Margaret Rutherford. Despite it’s name, it actually had TONS of room in it, so we dropped off the biggest chunk of our books in it.
Plot Twist (Walker Park Trail)
Books Rock (Lake Fayetteville Trail)
The unique structure at the Botanical Gardens of the Ozarks was designed and built by Stuart Fulbright and is sponsored by Northside Rotary Club and Downtown Fayetteville Rotary Club. Unfortunately, we cut that stop from the ride because our trailer hitch hadn’t come in time and the trailer was sort of jimmied on the bike.
Since I ride my bicycle by the Little Free Library in front of Arsaga’s at the Depot several times a week on my way to and from work, it’s easy for me to keep up with the little library’s stock. It’s clear plexiglass front door means I don’t even have to stop to check out whether there’s room to drop off some books or not. Luckily, this collection doesn’t need much space though, as it’s just three books. If you happen to want any of these three books, just follow me on twitter and look for a tweet that says, “The drop has been made.” Then you can roll on over to the little library and pick them up!
This trio includes:
- Coloring Your Prayers: An Inspirational Coloring Book for Making Dreams Come True is a partially colored copy of a fun book that’s part coloring book part spiritual workbook.
- The Seed Handbook: The Feminine Way to Create Business is an inspirational guide for ladies who want to start a business.
- Visioning: Ten Steps to Designing the Life of Your Dreams is a super thorough guide to creating a vision board that will make all of your dreams come true, maybe.
In case you’re just stumbling upon this and you’re wondering why I’ve got a little stack of books on my blog, check out my intro to this series. And in case you’re super in the know, I’m still doing my Fayetteville Little Free Library Bike Tour with the rest of my books. I just had this one last carefully curated collection to share.
Remember my big stack of books that I’m slowly donating to a nearby Little Free Library? (If not, no worries, this post is still full of exciting news for you!) Well, the big stack is still big, and the donating is about to get a hell of a lot faster.
My boyfriend and I are buying a house, and that means we’re moving, and that means I am going to donate ALL 70 of the remaining books on ONE day! I know! It’s SO exciting! I wanted folks to have a little heads up in case you are vying for something in the stack. So, see the snap above of all of the books loaded up in my bike trailer that will carry all of the books (I can’t believe they all fit so perfectly!) to the little libraries. I’ll be on twitter during the tour taking a quick snapshot of the books that land in each library. So you’ll be able to find out where a book you might have wanted has landed if you follow me there.
I’ve picked seven exceptional Little Free Libraries in Fayetteville to visit on the tour. I’ll leave approximately 10 books in each (depending on available space). And hopefully by the time we’re climbing northward to the final stop, the trailer will be nice and light! The libraries on the tour, in order of the ride, are:
If you’d like to join me on this ride, and you have your own bike, you’re more than welcome to! It’s going to be long/slow because of the super heavy trailer full of books! You can RSVP here, and catch up with us with our tweets along the way! Feel free to jump in for little bits of the ride or do the whole thing! (You must wear a helmet if you plan to ride, and be self sustained with water and any other things you may need.)
If you want to get your hands on any of the books on your own, just check twitter for a tweet that says “The drop has been made” on Sunday June 26th. There will be other details in the tweet like the location and a picture of the books that were placed in that library!
Let me know if you have any questions in the comments.
Often times at music festivals I attend as a Work Exchange Team volunteer. That usually means spending 15 hours of my time at the festival working. Sometimes I have parked cars, sometimes I was a human arrow, once I handed out beer tickets to VIP attendees; the tasks were easy, and broken into short 5 hour shifts. But sometimes I missed a set I wanted to see, or had to stand in the sun so long I got sunburned. There were sacrifices. So when I got into a conversation with a reporter from our state newspaper during one of my shifts, his final question for me was, “Why do this?” My answer, “For the music, duh!” So, if you ask me, the music is by far the most important part of a music festival. There are people who attend for other reasons, but the music is the glue holding the whole beautiful thing together. So ask me why I want to spend three long hot summer days and nights in the middle of the Ozark National Forest camped out in a field? It’s for the music. This music to be precise:
This playlist is a sampling of the bands playing at Homegrown Music Festival July 21st-23rd at Byrds Adventure Center in Ozark Arkansas. Give it a listen, but be warned – you’ll find yourself buying tickets to the festival as soon as you do!
Need more reasons to love Homegrown? Check out this post with three more amazing things about the festival, beyond the music!
Homegrown Music Festival has compensated me for my posts on the festival in the form of tickets to the event. However, all opinions and enthusiasm are most definitely my own.