From Cradle to Grave

     Whenever I go home I visit with family and a few friends- not news, but one particular friend is, well, a l-o-n-g-t-i-m-e friend. 
     We’ve been friends since I was three and she was two, and our mothers put us together in a playpen, lit their Lucky Strikes and poured a cocktail, gave us a few cookies and left us to our own imagination.     
     We have been playing together ever since.
     Barby (no ‘ie’- her mother hated the American doll icon) and I have taken different paths in life, that have curiously always looked very similar.
     She is a teacher.
     I was a teacher (for a while).
     She loves the country.
     I love the country (but live in a city).
     She has a successful long-time marriage.
     She has two children. A son and daughter.
     Me too.
     She loves to cook and garden.
     Yes. And, Yes.
     She still looks 21.
     I still….
     She raises chickens.
     I raise hell.
     She has dirt (literally-and on me).
     Me- not so much (except on her).
     But we don’t sow what we can’t reap and let the harvest go to waste.

     Oh no, ’cause we dig each other like all baby girls with drivers licenses and a mortgage should…

even if we have eaten too many cookies.

Barb and Randy’s Garden.

I never leave without the offer of
fresh eggs-
and a ride home.

The girls.

An interior wall
that still has an original
exterior window in it.
So clever.

This is the money shot.
Barby is the cutie on the far left having the party.
I am the tall drink of water in the yellow
dress (second in from right)
that is giving the party a
Nothing new about that.


  • Tracie Nall - Those special, long-time friendships are the most precious gift.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - She really has been a gift to me. I even think I wrapped her in paper and put a bow on her once. She cried. She always cried. HahahaReplyCancel

  • mindy - Beautiful! I wish I had a friend who lived in such a place. But then she would probably no longer be my friend, because I would visit and never leave!!ReplyCancel

  • Stacia Ellermeier - I have a window like that in my house too! So awesome to have friends like that. 🙂ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - I had a house once where I left an exterior window intact and built around it. I LOVE that look!ReplyCancel

  • Ellen Dolgen - Really lovely, Cheryl. Love the interior window!ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie Sprenger - I love that commentary on your friendship! Especially the part about its origins, and your mothers’ Lucky Strikes- ha! Gorgeous photos, too, as usual!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - Hey Steph! Thanks for all of your kind words- and your continued support on this blog. You ROCK lady!!!ReplyCancel

  • Krisztina Williams - It’s so nice to have a long-term friend. I have one from middle school. After she moved away for college, I ended up being stationed near KC when she was at KU, and now that she has established herself in DC, I’ve been stationed near DC for years. It’s so cool to get to live near each other into adulthood even though we’ve both lived all over the place since high school.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - And share each other’s lives, and kids, and hubby stories! Though mostly she just looks at me and rolls her eyes- somethings never change. HahahaReplyCancel

  • Ruchira Khanna - beautiful post, Cheryl.

    Memories of childhood friends is a blessing 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Julie DeNeen - Your pictures make me want to come live with you and follow you on your travels!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - You are simply the most lovely woman. We really must get together some time- or, you can come travel with me. I’m easy. HahahaReplyCancel

  • Barb - Hey Cher if I figure this out it’ll be a great day! Thanks for sharing. We have so many memories that I wrote avout. To name a few. The homemade carnivals ( always looking to make a buck or quarter). Magic shows by Gary crumbly. Bike taf. Bullrush. Big brothers and Liss with lemonade stands and scramblers. The harts and horsy tree and the little pond! I could go on. Always great to see you. It seems as tho time doesn’t pass although the cookies remain!!!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Sue - Beautiful post today. I had a childhood friend like that since we were 1 year olds. We lived next door to each other. She has passed away and just this morning I was thinking of a question that only she could answer for me and got mad that now…noone in the world is left to talk about it with. So yeah, cherish and talk a lot while you can.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl Nicholl - I hadn’t thought about us like that before. Thanks for enlightening me. I’m going to call her now.ReplyCancel

  • William Kendall - Looks like the sort of place you can’t help but feel at home in!ReplyCancel

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