Sandy and I met probably about twenty years ago at church when I first moved to Santa Rosa. However, we didn’t really become friends until she moved in with Harrah around 1994.

Harrah had initiated a little group of seven friends for the purpose of supporting and loving each through all the changes in life that would be coming our way. We called ourselves the seven sisters. I know some people were a bit hurt by our exclusive little club, and we tried to not be so exclusive… but you can guess how well that worked. We did adopt some honorary members along the way.

We all had a relationship with Harrah though not necessarily with each other, though we all were in some way acquainted. Over the years, our little group has evolved. Everyone has moved out of town except for me, which has been a bit painful since I became pretty attached to this wonderful group of women. Hence my fiftieth birthday gift to myself. Most everyone stays in touch with one or a few of the others. Some have drifted away. Some have worked hard to stay close. Harrah is like the Mom who at least tries to stay connected. We all have little gifts we’ve given to each other. Like the Claddagh ring I wear. Everyone has one, but I think I’m the only one who still wears mine. I even wore it at my wedding to symbolize my commitment to hold my friendships close to my heart even as I took vows to my husband. We have taken turns giving each other little men… We’ve had some fun with this one! We’ve had a few reunions, though it’s been quite a while since the last one.

Sandy was Harrah’s housemate and was part of the seven sisters. This is how we started to become close. Then as one by one those we were closest too moved away, and as I got married, Sandy and I began to gravitate more and more to each other. We were involved in several projects together, a marriage workshop called One Accord, The Gap Youth Training, and finally Friends On Purpose.

She was also the girlfriend I would call to go do girl things. She was the one I’d call to help me decorate a room, or go shopping. I’m not a shopper, but Sandy is a master at it. She was a confident and dear friend.

Then… she left me too. Married Paul and ran off to Hawaii. I was her Matron of Honor and sobbed through the entire toast. Sigh…. It really is all about me! When she left, she generously gave to me many of the lovely things she had collected on her many shopping excursions. Beautiful garden pots, art work, throw blankets, etc. I have little reminders of Sandy all over my house.

Steve and I went a few years ago, on my birthday, to Oahu to visit Sandy and Paul. We spent the 4th of July and my birthday with them before heading to Kauai for vacation.

When Sandy and Paul came to Santa Rosa to visit they stayed with us. I came home from work one day, and found Sandy busy in the back yard planting lovely flowers in all the empty pots she had given me the year before. She had purchased the plants, the soil, the mulch, and the fertilizer. I jumped in to help, and she taught me all about how to plant arrange and care for flowers so that they would look fabulous for a long time. All the rest of that summer I had an amazing show garden that made me smile with joy and gratitude every time I visited it. Now, every spring I plant my flowers and think of Sandy – and wish she were here to enjoy the process with me. Everything is so much better when shared with a friend.


5 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Kim on July 13, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    Sandy was my clean up/dish washing buddy.

    Her and Harrah made one mighty decorating team that’s for sure!
    Sandy was more girly; Harrah, eclectic. (Does she still have the stuffed fox?)


  2. Posted by Kim on July 13, 2010 at 6:09 pm

    I still have my little fisherman and my metal kilted bag piper (somewhere…Finn may have had a paw in his disappearence)


  3. Posted by candace on July 14, 2010 at 2:16 am

    I love Sandy. I’m so glad that our dear friends intertwine in such a providential manner. I love you all.
    I love jGod, I love Life, I love you! Candace


  4. Posted by Jessica on July 14, 2010 at 5:08 am

    Please give a GIGANTIC hug & kiss to my soul sista Sandy!!! XO


  5. Posted by Sandy Bryant on July 14, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    Here’s a hug and a kiss back Jess! Hoping to see you and Juan and the little ones when Paul & I come to Santa Rosa in the Fall…..that’s the plan………..on our way to or fro Hawaii.
    Kim, keep looking in the mail for another little guy to add to the 7 sisters collection, but don’t start this week or next 😀
    During the last years I got to live in Santa Rosa one of my favorite Fawn & Sandy things to do was to meet at Checkers on a Friday evening for a glass or two of wine and hors d’ouevres. Little shrimps in garlic oil. Hot and yummy, but not as much as the conversation and love we shared. We also made Christmas presents together one year; cranberry liqueur I believe. And other stuff of course. Oh, we have our own Trains, Planes, & Automobiles story of a trip from Santa Rosa to Jacksonville, FL that’s hilarious. Today we part ways: she and Steve are headed south to New Orleans (nawlins is the correct local pronunciation) in a short while. Off to beignets and coffee, jazz and hurricanes, the mighty Mississippi and Atchafalaya River Basin, Bourbon Street and carriage rides, and so on. Love this woman Fawn!


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