I’m always surprised when I meet someone who has never done a Friendsgiving celebration. They remind some of my favorite fall memories.
I started the November tradition maybe six years ago when my now-husband and I moved into our home in Chicago. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays so I wanted to replicate that celebration with friends.
So what exactly is Friendsgiving? It’s just like Thanksgiving — a day to celebrate with loved ones around a giant meal. The biggest difference is that no aunties and uncles are allowed. This is a FRIENDS ONLY holiday. And while it’s pretty mainstream, it still has a long way to go. Some people have still never celebrated it!
I love Friendsgiving and I’ll say this: I enjoy it 10x more than actual Thanksgiving. Here’s why:
No nosey or judgemental relatives invited
Look, I love being around my family. A lot of people do. But even the most perfect of families has annoying quirks, drama or a random relative who always makes a comment that ruins the entire night. There’s just something about being around nothing but friends that really makes the atmosphere much more comforting.
You can make your own traditions
Being forced to say grace or feeling obliged to try the suspicious looking green bean casserole? No, thank you. None of that is necessary when it’s just your buddies at dinner. Friendsgiving is truly a time to make your own traditions with friends and break away from the ones you’re used to with family. Our Friendsgiving tradition is getting a group photo of all the guests right after dinner. It’s a necessity.
The food is better…and different
Now, let’s be real. A lot of us millennials can’t cook as well as previous generations, so that makes for some interesting dinner choices. One year at Friendsgiving, we had tamales and KFC! That would be unheard of at real Thanksgiving! The grandmas would lose their minds. But when it’s just your buddies at home, it’s totally OK if someone brings over a box of Taco Bell tacos. Dishes like that always makes for some laughs and a funny story later down the line.
You can go all out on the festive drinks
…Without worrying about acting a fool in front of your more conservative family members. Real Thanksgiving can be really stuffy and maybe even a little more formal when you’re around family. But when you’re with friends you can let loose and all types of conversations are open for discussion. One year my friends and I went out to a bar in Wrigleyville after dinner and we had a blast!
All your friends are in the same place at the same time
It was easy to get all your friends together in college because everyone lived so close and had nothing else to do. But after college ended and everyone entered the real world, it became harder to see everyone. Friendsgiving is the one time a year all my friends are in the same spot just hanging out, eating good food and spending time together. Nothing is better than that. I always look back fondly on Friendsgiving.