Plant a seed of friendship; reap a bouquet of happiness. -Lois L. Kaufman

Earlier this year a special friend came to lunch at my house, Dottie J. In her hand was the most beautiful bouquet of flowers. Fitting – because Dottie J is one of those colorful people in my life.

I first met Dottie J when I was about 6 years of age, as she was one of my Mom’s closest friends. I saw something different about her. While she had an intense desire to know God, her life reflected the imprint of His love stamped deep in her heart, reaching out to people around her. To this day she takes care of the elderly in particular with patience and love.

Dottie J had no children of her own, but she took a special interest in me and loved me like a daughter. I’m so glad that my Mother shared me with her! I would spend the night at her two-story home, where I’d run around her house and garden. My first experience of rummage, garage, and yard sales was with Dottie. My all-time my favorite was going to work with her and plunking away on the old typewriter and adding machine as I played “office.”

Now, almost 40 years later, I realize how Dottie J taught me the value of relationships.

Our lunch was special. I can’t remember what I served, but I sure do remember our conversation and her passion for God. It touched me. It touched my daughter Abby who was also a part of the afternoon.

Just this week, I received a celebration card in the mail from Dottie J. It was a card celebrating with me my one-year journey with my blog. Was I surprised? No! Dottie has sent me cards from my childhood to adulthood cheering me on through life’s ups and downs. She has been a Balcony Girl, indeed.

I’m thankful she planted that seed of friendship years ago.
Thank you, Dottie J!
Hostess Tip: Did you know that if a guest brings flowers for the hostess, you should feel no obligation to use them for your centerpiece? I’ve learned to know where my vases are so I can quickly cut the flowers and put them right into a vase. I’ll then look around for a spot close to the dining area so the flowers can be seen and enjoyed!

(Above photos: Peony in November! We were so surprised to see this beautiful bloom on our peony bush this past weekend; me years ago – about the time that I started spending time with Dottie; Dottie and me earlier this year with beautiful flowers that she brought me. A true symbol of friendship.)