The Friendship Project: 31 Days of Saying Yes, Being Open, And Making New Friends in LA

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It’s been quiet around here because I’ve been busy settling in to our new school routine, fixing a few bugs with the new site (it’s almost ready), getting ready to go to Allume (thank y’all so much for your support in ordering “Shalom In The City” t-shirts!  I’m $400 away from my goal; almost everything has been purchased for my trip)  and planning this amazing new 31 days series: The Friendship Project.

Every Oct. I like to link up with over 1400 bloggers and write for 31 days on one topic.  It’s a great way to kickstart a daily writing habit, explore a topic near and dear to my heart and building community with other writers.  This year, I’m bursting with excitement about this series because I’m going to have a ton of fun and you get to follow along right with me!

As most of you know, this year we moved our family #FromBostonToLA when my husband accepted a job at a church downtown.  We moved right in the middle of Boston’s snowiest winter, which was good for building morale for skeptical kids who didn’t want to move away from their friends, “Hey guys, did you know that right now in LA, it’s 70 degrees and our apartment complex has a POOL!  That’s right, kiss those snow drifts goodbye and pack your swimsuits!!!”

The pool and it’s glorious diversion lasted…oh…. about six months, then the perpetual vacation feel of SoCal wore off and we all realized one major thing:

We miss our friends in Boston and making friends in a new city is hard.  Very hard. 

One night while TC was at work, the kids and I cuddled up on the couch and had a good, ugly cry.  As I put them to bed that evening, I realized that all the things I was telling my kids about adjusting:  It takes time, you should go to new places, meet new people, you’ll find your people, don’t give into the sadness.  I needed to hear (and act on).

What if, I thought, I devoted my 31 Days series to finding and nurturing new friendships, for me and the kids.

We’re here.  School has started, we’ve paid our water bill and changed our Amazon shipping address and I  have a completed a la Pinterest gallery wall in my kitchen, it’s for really real…we live in LA.  Now, it’s time to put down roots.

Enter the Friendship Project.

When we talk about Shalom, we’re expressing more than a hope for peace- that blanket, cover-all, ambiguous concept we hear thrown around at Christmas time, we mean wholeness- wholeness in our relationships to God, wholeness in our relationship to the earth/creation and wholeness in our relationships to each other.

This 31 Days series will all about the shalom-y goodness that can come from friendships, both old and new ones.  It’ll give practical ideas on how to gather your friends, how to love them through hard times, and what to do when it’s time to say goodbye.

For the next 31 Days, I’ll be this project’s field researcher on relationships.

These 31 Days will be my field notes on this adventures in friendship making.   I’ve committed to attend at least seven NEW social gatherins, I’m reaching out to schedule as many coffee dates as I can, and I’m reading good books on relationships. Through every step, I’ll update the blog on my progress- sharing my insights with the hope that my fumbling through making friends, empowers you to reach out and connect with new women right in your community. I’m going to use Periscope for “on the street” coverage of friendship making/ maintaining (so make sure you’re following me on Twitter), weekly podcasts from my field guides (six of my super smart, really fun friends, both old and new) and downloadable prayer cards as a resource for you to support friends when they’re suffering.

Tomorrow, I’ll outline my guidelines based on two Benedictine vows and next week, you’ll meet my field guides.  Sunday, the first download will be available, so if you haven’t already, follow the blog to make sure it comes right to your inbox Sunday morning.

I hope you’ll join me on these next 31 days of writing and making friends- it’ll be fun!  But don’t just take my word for it…here’s some rousing endorsements from key players in my 31 Days project…

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Although, I do believe her choice of attire and hairstyle are a gross misrepresentation of me when she dressed as me for Halloween (I mean, come on, I’m from Silicone Valley- you’d never catch me in a sheath dress and white cardigan!), I do appreciate Osheta’s sense of humor. You should follow her Friendship Project for the next 31 days.  I’m confident you’ll laugh just don’t ask me to find it on the internet- even with iOS9.

~Siri

image1Wait, did she just say, “as many coffee dates as I can fit in the next 31 days”!  Whoo Hoo!  Get that Apply Pay finger ready, Lady.  It’s about to get real in October.

~Starbucks App

Alls I know is she got this thick Southern Accent.  She says ‘y’all”, “riiiiice” or Pete’s sake…how’s she supposed to pull of a Jersey Girl Pageant Queen?  Seeing how she makes friends at the Murder Mystery Dinner MeetUp with that nasally y’all should be interesting…

~Formal Pageantry Dress Hanging in the Back of My Closet

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I’m just glad she’s getting out and making new girlfriends next month, I mean, I’m all for her Noonday business, but seriously, I can’t take much more, “Babes do these earrings go with this top?”  Girls of SoCal…help a brother out…
~T.C. Moore, my husband and reluctant stylist.

(Want your own “Shalom” shirt.  You can contribute to the fundraiser Here:
https://www.gofundme.com/ShalomInTheCity

Want those EARRINGS!  They’re so cute and Noonday, of course!)
image1Our mom’s pretty nice, I mean when it’s hot she gets us popsicles and lets us watch Netflix…who wouldn’t want to be friends with her? Just make sure she doesn’t try to trick you on your friend dates with the fake popsicles…Outshine fruit bars…belch!

~Moore Kids, ages 13, 9, and 8

10855111_10156032802060077_2124482278326020644_oOsheta is the Tony Chachere’s of friends- a little spicy when people mess with her friends, a little salty when she loses at board games, and completely unique.  You don’t want to miss her 31 Days!  Become her friend and when you have a baby, or a bad day, or simply need ungodly amounts of carbs, she’ll make you a pot of red beans and rice- then your life will be forever changed. Trust me.

~ The Mystery Tony’s Seasoning Can that showed up on our porch a few weeks ago.  

IMG_7397I’m so behind this project, I’ll take Osheta to meet her friends myself.  Don’t think I wouldn’t do anything for this lovely creature who slips me bacon and cooked chicken in my crate. Osheta knows how to love…and give belly rubs.
~Fenway, the dog
FullSizeRender-8 I  just have one piece of advice for Osheta as she begins this 31 Days Project  Keep Calm and asdfhakjsdha;dhoaiejfoiwjeorqiue rqve0vfqow[fpgk ertylkbperoty npw45i7 -0neir5-w04n6489qn-]0itr vp’okja ‘ls;dfkav ;ldfj v’sFJAPV ‘WOEUR BWPOERAPWLBKFA:LBDMF…

Broadway the cat, who loves to sit on keyboards

With such endorsements, don’t you just want to follow along?  I hope to see you back here tomorrow as I write on the Benedictine vows that drive the Friendship Project and an outline of all the friendship-making fun in our futures.

Seeking Shalom on Friend at a Time,

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11 thoughts on “The Friendship Project: 31 Days of Saying Yes, Being Open, And Making New Friends in LA

  1. Oooh, I love this idea, Osheta! I can’t wait to follow along! One of my New Year’s Resolutions in 2015 was to “take a social risk each month.” It has ranged from the simple (like initiating a first get-together with people we already know) to really pushing my boundaries (like asking moms in Chick-fil-A for their phone numbers). But I was reflecting this week how much some of my relationships have developed this year, and I can actually track some it back to the month that I “took a social risk” with them. haha. (Also, I wrote a bit about the CFA situation here: http://www.alifewithsubtitles.com/2015/02/how-to-pick-up-strangers-aka-how-to-be.html)

    Finally, have you read the book “MWF seeking BFF”? Your project has a similar theme to hers, and I enjoyed that book so much. Thought she did a great job of researching friendships and documenting her experiment. If you haven’t read it, you might enjoy it! Best of luck, and I’ll be following along!

  2. Hi Osheta! Girl I know your struggle! I moved from Texas to Colorado to Northern California in 2 years, I have been here a year now and am finally making friends! It is so hard! I can’t wait to see where this journey takes you and I hope in the end you make some great new friends! Last year, I met my friend Kayla http://www.thecreativejayne.com from 31 days. we now video chat once a week and text all the time, local friends are great but cultivate new friendships no matter where they come from! I’m over at http://www.shelbyclarkeblog.wordpress.com if you want to stop by!

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