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So, I really wanted to write something about Thanksgiving this week, but I was having a lot of troubling figuring just what to write about. I made the mistake of asking my best friends/roommates. I won’t bore you with all the particulars, but they made several suggestions that I feel need to be acknowledged.

“You could discuss the turkey industry,” one said. “Or you could talk about what side dishes are good and which ones are honestly just a bad idea” (cranberry “sauce”, I’m looking at you). “You could talk about how to make a turkey, or better yet, how not to make a turkey.” And that was where we left sanity behind. Various suggestions my roommates gave me on what not to do with a turkey were as follows: cutting it with a chainsaw, defrosting it by chucking it into a roaring fireplace, and getting that nice char on it by lobbing it at the sun and letting it bake Icarus-style.

Needless to say, those will not be the focus of this article. However, as I was laughing my head off at their silly comments, I couldn’t help but be struck again, as I often am, by just how happy and thankful I am to call these weirdoes my best friends.

It’s Thanksgiving, and a lot of us college kids are either throwing or being invited to Friendsgivings. Just as a refresher, a Friendsgiving is a Thanksgiving get-together consisting of friends rather than family, and usually featuring only one or two actually decent “homemade” dishes. Nonetheless, they’re usually a great time and a lot of fun. But I think that, just like the real Thanksgiving, we can often lose sight of what makes it so great.

1. This isn’t just a party with your friends.

A Friendsgiving party is so much more than just your usual get together. It’s supposed to be a party that makes you stop and be truly thankful for the gift of friendship. That’s right, you’re supposed to actually show or tell that you are in fact thankful for the people that you see so often that you forget to even smile when you see them now. Tell your bestie that you’re proud to wear the title of their BFF.  Make your hall-mate some brownies and tell them that they’ve made college life a joy. Let your best class buddy know that you appreciate how hard they work to keep classes light and fun. Take this party to appreciate the variety of friends that enrich your life.

2. There are none of the traditional distractions.

At the average Thanksgiving, there are a ton of distractions. All the family recipes have to be slaved over in the kitchen. The football game has to be on. The kids have to be entertained. Everyone has to listen to Great-Uncle Jimmy tell them just how easy they have it now. It’s just a lot. But a Friendsgiving is just the time to let those traditions and concerns go. All you need is a couple of pizzas and a pumpkin pie from the supermarket, a good party playlist, and excellent company. There is no excuse not to be mentally present at a Friendsgiving party. Just chill and have fun and, of course, be thankful.

3. Everyone actually has to pitch in.

So, not to change the focus and make this a feminist piece, but most of us ladies have gotten to the age where we’re one of the “women.” This means we’re in the kitchen helping make food, setting the table, and cleaning up after everyone else has settled down to digest their turkey. Not so at a Friendsgiving. Everyone pitches in because there are no traditional roles. Joe brought the pizza and throws out the plates after. Lucy brought blankets and fairy lights and packs them up after. Avery set up the speakers and brought drinks and is then in charge of putting those away. No one is in the kitchen obsessing over the various casseroles. Everyone is just having a good time, and no one person should be stuck holding the mop after everyone else is full and sleepy.

So, I hope this convinced you all to have a great holiday season, and Happy Friendsgiving y’all!

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A senior English major at Regent University. Mostly just a word nerd who also happens to be in love with film and K-pop. Always in search of new experiences, food, and friends. Feel free to come say hi on Twitter or Instagram
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