“Express gratitude to three friends…” Only three? That’s all I get? So many people have had an impact on my life, and it’s hard to choose the top three to write about. But I guess if I have to… these are the three I interacted the most with, and who helped me get through,  2016.

Emilee – This beautiful, bleach blonde friend of mine loves Disney almost as much as I do.fb3 Seriously, we sit and talk about it for hours on end sometimes. We met in middle school when we were both going through our awkward goth phase, but sadly lost touch after that. Thank goodness God saw it fit to bring us to ACU together or we would never have gone on so many adventures together! Emilee and I studied abroad in Oxford together, but that’s not where we connected. It wasn’t until a year later, after I had worked at Disney and Emilee and I moved into the same house, that we really became best friends. She was the only person who would let me rant for hours on end about Disney World and how much I missed it without looking bored. I really needed that at the time (leaving Disney was the literal saddest thing I’ve ever done), and I appreciate her listening to my antics to this day. Since then we’ve pledged Alpha Kai together, been in Sing Song, gone on numerous road trips back and forth from Abilene, and so so much more. She always reminds me to stand up for myself, even if it’s in the small things, like having the waiter bring the right order to me at a restaurant.

She’s smart, loving, a great listener, and will one day be the BEST nurse on the planet.

Kelsey – Kelsey and I met when we studied abroad together in Oxford (Oxford will be a common fb7theme in this post). We lived on the same floor in our Victorian style house, and somehow ended up getting roped into going to Scotland together with a few other friends. I’d go into details on how amazing that adventure was, but there’s already a blog post on it here. After that, Kelsey spent a lot of time hanging out in my room, talking to me about Harry Potter, and explaining in detail the plots of the stories she was writing. (Did you catch that name? Kelsey Maple? She’s gonna be a famous author one day I promise.) We spent the next semester watching movies on weekends, baking cakes, and basically cementing our friendship for eternity. A semester later I got REALLY lucky, and Kelsey and Emilee became friends too

Emilee and Kelsey – (no, this isn’t the third friend, we just make a really great trio so I’m fb6giving it it’s own section.) When the three of us discovered we all loved the same TV shows, books, and movies, there was no stopping the powerful friendship that would ensue. We had lived abroad together, we had pledged a sorority together, but nothing cements a friendship like SuperWhoLock. (If you don’t know what that it, see tumblr.) We even all went to an Alpha Kai event dressed as Sam, Dean, and Cas together one time. Not only do we all love the same things, we’re all introverts, which is great. Our idea of a fun Friday night is laying in Emilee’s bed (because she has the biggest one, and the only one with a TV across from it), drinking red wine and watching a movie.

If you ask me what I miss most about college, Friday nights with those two ladies are near the top of the list.

Not only do we love staying in together, but we have some of the best adventures together. Namely, that time Emilee and Kelsey came and visited me at Disney World and Emilee got proposed to (why don’t I have a blog post about this??). We went to Disney and Universal, and basically spent a whole two days fangirling over everything, and staring in awe at Emilee’s ring. Then came the dreaded 13 hour drive back…Which was SO much fun! It’s always good to know when you and your friends can travel well together, and I love that the three of us can.

So even though we might all be heading in different directions come August, I know I will always cherish the memories we have together, and I know that our adventures certainly won’t stop.

Shelby – Shelby and I met freshman year of college, a few months before we studied abroad fb2together (see, Oxford again). We were two of the only missions majors in our class, and we connected super easily. She also later became the genius who dragged Kelsey and me on the Scotland adventure, and started a beautiful friendship. When she took a semester off from ACU after study abroad, I was devastated. I couldn’t believe one of my best friends was leaving. BUT I got lucky and she came back the next semester.

Shelby has been my saving grace many times in many ways.

She’s the only one who really understands how to calm me down from a panic attack or a bout of depression. She’s the person I run to when I feel like my world is falling apart, and she always knows what to say. I cannot think of a better person to have shared a room with my last year of college. Shelby is the best at pointing me back to God, and will never turn down a late night conversation about boy troubles. She loves God like no one I’ve ever seen, and I’m proud to call her one of my best friends.

There are so many people I left out of this blog post, but I will mention my two other wonderful housemates, the other people I spent the most time with in 2016. Hannakate is the human version of Bible Gateway, and can quote or give you the reference to any Bible verse at anytime. She was my first best friend at ACU, and without knowing it helped me get through a really terrible time my freshman year. Maryha isn’t afraid to tell it like it is, and has given me so much business advice that I could not be more grateful for. Seriously, I’m not sure I would have a job right now without her.

All of these beautiful women have poured into me and taught me so many life lessons that I will treasure forever, and I miss them every single day. Please find friends who love you like this. If you don’t, you’re doing it wrong. 

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