Family and Friends….

I am no stranger to voicing my opinion and having somewhat of a controversial opinion on things. Family is one of them. I have said on here in the past and I still stand by it today…I don’t have to be nice to you, have a relationship with you, and/or talk to you because we are family. Family to me is the people who enrich my life, lift me up, do not guilt me into spending time with them, who support me in my decisions while still not being afraid to say what they are really feeling.

I have more non-family Family than real blood family. It shocks people often. But I chose not to live a lie. Someone I know can’t stand her mother. I mean can’t stand. Writes horrible things about her. Likes and unlikes her mom on FB about 6 times a year. She will send texts saying she is done and never wants to talk to her again and then the next thing you know they are going out to breakfast. And when I say, but you hate your mother I get….”yeah, but she’s my mom so I have to”. No you really don’t.

If a person causes you such misery in your life you don’t need them in your life. I know many a person who has been in love with someone but it was a bad situation and so they broke up. This in a way is like that. Now I talk to my mother a lot. I like her. We don’t friend and unfriend each other in childish rage. I like my dad I talk to him. There are other family members I don’t like and I don’t talk to them. And people always tell me they are family and I need to talk to them. No, because no family member would treat me like the way they do.

Spend time with people you like. Life is far too short to be guilted into spending it with people you don’t want to. Yes, I would sometimes go and visit my grandma but I wanted to go less and less because all she would talk about when I would go was that I never came to visit. Guilt is an unnecessary tool. Because while you may get people to do things at the moment you damage your relationship more and more…and eventually you will get people wanting to avoid spending time with you.

Point being focus on the good people in your life. The ones that stand by you and make you laugh when you are having a bad day. Ones that will gather around the table and share a yummy pasta dish with you and appreciate that you took the time to make it for them.

This dish comes from a local chef here in Seattle, Kathy Casey. I love all her stuff and make her food a lot. Every one of her cookbooks are outstanding and I always sit and hope and wait for her to come out with another one! This one comes from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table: Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, Southern Alaska but honesty you can’t go wrong with ANY of her books. She makes a mean cocktail too.

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  1. A savoury dish here on CCBP in kinder to my hips since self control is not my middle name. I get along well with my family, the secret perhaps is that we live 3,000 km away from each other.

  2. I wish my husband would figure that out. If I say anything about his father, who he and I both agree is a GIANT D-bag, he’s like, “Remember, you’re talking about my dad.”

    Well, yeah. I’m also talking about a jerk who makes you miserable.

    (Also, I love penne. This looks great!)

  3. Love this post. :) Thank you.

  4. This looks amazing. LOVE Penne!!

    Also, I know exactly what you mean. I have way more non family family too. And that’s just fine :)

  5. Yum! My three year old just asked me to make that!

    I’m so lucky – I love my family. No BS drama here. It’s crazy how rare that is.

  6. YUM!!

    Artichokes + chicken + pasta = some of my absolute most favorite things!!

    And I totally hear you on the nonfamily family. I try to avoid holidays so I can avoid family members but I’m stuck in the “but they’re family” guilt trip too. I especially love the advice on relationships that my cousin finds necessary to give everytime she’s around. Thanks but I didn’t ask for it.

    Anyways… Back to the pasta! I cannot wait to try this out!!

  7. Thank you so much for this post! I had this exact conversation with someone last week who doesn’t understand why I wouldn’t want to go to a big “family”dinner. My family is my husband, our kids, my parents and my siblings, I don’t need to get together with distant relatives to make other people feel good.

    The pasta looks yummy too!

  8. Luckily I don’t have problems with my family and so I have large gatherings several times a year. This recipe is one that I think they would like. Thanks for posting.

  9. That looks great. Wonder how it would be minus mushrooms & olives (most of my family is not a fan of them.)

  10. A few years ago, I decided it was time to figure out who mattered and who didn’t. I set a phone call plan in action…mentally noting the month of calling a “friend” and waiting three months to see if they would call me. If not, then I called again, noting the month, and waiting another three. If I still did not hear from this “friend” in that time, I stopped calling. People that don’t have time for you DON’T WANT TO HAVE TIME FOR YOU! Now, my circle of friends are FRIENDS! I also intentionally eliminated other relationships along the way…the negative people that did not support me as the person I want to be. Again, I share…”Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind!”…..thank you Dr. Suess!

    Oh…if only I could eat this stuff and not be sick!!!

  11. Peabody, this post got me right at my heart. My parents just went through a really ugly divorce, and I don’t think I’ll ever want to see my dad again after the abuse she and I went through from him. I don’t consider him my family – just a genetic code donor. On the other hand, several years ago I met a girl completely unrelated to me who became such a good friend that she is my family. We’re like sisters.

    So, what I’m saying is that I totally get you here.

    And this penne dish totally got me. Artichokes, cheese, mushrooms, pasta…you’re singing my song!

  12. Great post! I’m pretty tight with my sister, but haven’t seen or spoken with my brother since our dad died. Strange, ’cause we never argued….I just think we got sick of each other while dealing with the parents’ illnesses. I’m OK with it too.
    Love this cheesy, gooey looking dish. Wish it was sitting in my kitchen right nw!

  13. Amen. Love them but ….. :)

  14. Thanks for the wonderful post, and I agree wholeheartedly. And, looks like an awesome recipe as well! :)

  15. I love love love this post! It is so well said. Growing up, we lived in Hawaii very far from immediate relatives (who are super drama for anyone’s mama). Our friends turned into our Auntie’s and Uncle’s. Friends are/can be family. So keep the positive people around you and the one’s that aren’t…the people that tear you down: Sayonara! Adios!
    PS: The dish looks good, too. I’m going to have to cook that this Wednesday. g

  16. This is right on target and I agree completely. I have a brother I never talk to just because I don’t want to anymore. I always end up feeling worse and he never calls me so I just dropped my end. Family? So what?
    This pasta fish looks great but I’m still waiting for the lollipop recipe

  17. Wow, that looks fabulous! I like Kathy Casey. I saw her at the Bite of Seattle a couple of years ago.

  18. The recipe looks delicious, but I also wanted to thank you for the post. I cut some of my family out of my life completely a few years ago. Many friends, even knowing the circumstances and the effect it had on me and how much self-improvement I have had since the cut, say I should get back in touch just because they are family. It’s refreshing to see some people out there get it instead of trying to make me feel guilty. :)

  19. Peabody, thank you.
    My family is dysfunctional and doesn’t care about me, but always forces me to do things they don’t want to do like talk to another half of the family that my half was taught to hate.

    They really upset me and I want to replace them with a loving family of my own and friends.

    Thanks so much for this post. I’ll be bookmarking it. Also, pasta is my favorite food and this one looks great.

  20. Amen to that sister! I have family members I don’t talk to because they are the kind of people who pretend to be nice to you and then stab you in the back. I already have stress in my life, don’t need the extra, thank you very much. That pasta looks amazing.

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