Not to be confused with Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving is an entirely different holiday in and of itself. Thanksgiving is when you go to your aunt’s house to find a beautiful turkey, many perfected side dishes and a dessert table to die for. Friendsgiving is when you band together with a group of misfits and eat cheap imitations of those things. For me, it started in college when my friends and I decided we would celebrate Friendsgiving before going to our respective hometowns for Thanksgiving. Now that I have moved across the country and cannot afford to fly home for Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving has taken the place of the aforementioned holiday altogether and has quickly become one of my favorite days of the year. Here are the things I have found essential in throwing a fun-filled Friendsgiving:
1. Place Cards. No matter how small the group, nothing says this is an official holiday like some fancy place cards.
2. Pre-established food expectations. One Friendsgiving, we got a last minute turkey with grocery store rewards points and guess what, turkeys need to thaw! Great story, questionable meat. Last year I made the mistake of assuming my friend new how to use a gas oven and took a fireball to the face singeing my eyebrows off. This year, we are looking at turkey sandwiches and Stovetop, which is not only acceptable, but also probably safer.
3. Entertainment. Now this is not a requirement, but I personally insist on watching all ten Friends Thanksgiving episodes. It takes roughly four hours and perfectly sets the tone for the day’s festivities (duh Friends-giving). My family always ended Thanksgiving with a Christmas movie to kick off the holiday season. This year we will be ending our Friendsgiving with Elf to kick off the season of quoting Elf.
4. Funtivities. At Friendsgiving, everyone sits at the kids table. I like to spice things up with some activities, crafts and games. One year I busted out the Perler Beads and they were a HUGE hit. I have also found coloring books and Mad Libs to work just as well. What we lack in culinary skills we make up for in childish amusement.
5. A solid group of misfits. It doesn’t matter how large or how small the gathering, the quality of the group is key. You get one Debbie Downer and you’re doomed. It’s okay to miss your family and maybe Skype with them at some point during the festivities, but don’t let your lack of a Thanksgiving ruin your enjoyment of an awesome Friendsgiving.
Hope everyone has a great holiday, even if you can’t make it home for your aunt’s amazing pumpkin pie and homemade whipped cream. Keep in mind nobody likes a Debbie Downer. Be thankful for the great friends you’ve made and celebrate with them in whatever fashion suits you!