It was late on a warm, sunny Sunday morning. We were two married couples, two sets of parents on the loose, four foodies, four best friends ready to reconnect, reveling in the freedom of having our moms to babysit our children for a few hours.
And we were likely the only people to bring no less than the following items on a casual Sunday picnic: a giant coffee air pot, two glass champagne flutes, four ceramic mugs and four plates, and a full-size wooden pepper grinder. But that's just what we do with these friends, Tommy and Linda. We share our lives; we share our faith; we share our food.
So, we unfurled our plaid quilted blankets under an elegant oak tree and began the first course - coffee for the boys, Prosecco for the ladies, blueberry cake donuts all around.
Then, we carefully constructed sandwiches of homemade almond butter and peach and plum jam on squishy bread. We opened a dish of still-steaming egg casserole, ate fistfuls of tart Texas blackberries.
We played catch, one of my favorite activities in the entire world, which I haven't had the chance to do since our daughter was born.
It's so special to have friends who are like family - friends with whom you share your food, your faith, your lives.
We ate, we drank. We exhaled. We lay on our backs in the grass and listened to the crickets singing in the oak trees. We were refreshed.
And it was perfect.