Friendsgiving with Chicago Bloggers

Ahhh Thanksgiving. It is by far my favorite holiday because I love Thanksgiving dinner. Turkey, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole – and then of course apple pie.

Beyond the food, I love that there’s a new rush in the air to think about what we’re thankful for and then also what we want to give to others for Christmas and then goals we want to set for ourselves for the next year. Thanksgiving begins the season of joy and reflection. 

One of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving is Friendsgiving. It allows us to appreciate our friends and also learn how to, at the very least make a side dish. 

This year, I had Thanksgiving at the Dollhouse with two other Chicago bloggers from Once Upon a Dollhouse and their friends and family.

We had the whole meal catered by amazing restaurants like Maggiano’s – yes I put spaghetti and meatballs on my Thanksgiving plate. 

Besides learning that red wine or champagne are really the only appropriate beverages to complement Thanksgiving dinner, it was fun to meet other people’s best friends and talk about new beauty trends like tattooing your eyebrows, or swapping travel adventures to Thailand and Paris.

From Windy City Cosmo, I hope you and your friends and family have a beautiful Thanksgiving. I’m in Los Angeles for the second annual tradition. How do you celebrate the holiday?


Is There an App for Finding a Basic Bitch BFF?

Wanted: someone to eat sushi with on Thursday night.

I am an independent woman, but you know,  I would like to eat a civil dinner with a fellow basic bitch or atleast someone other than  Netflix.

Will You Be My Friend and Other Ads That Shouldn’t Exist:

I remember reading an article about a women who posted an ad on Craigslist for someone to eat sushi with because her friends didn’t like sushi.

I thought that was so crazy. Sadly a decade later,  I understand.

We need people to do life with, to have dinner with, to talk to, and most importantly to help us in the here and now stages of life.

Growing up we had our classmates who were going through 7th grade together, but now as a twenty something, we may or may not have coworkers our age or at all. It’s harder to naturally make new friends in your twenties. Even in a city.

It’s weird to search for friends in your twenties. It gets a worse stigma than creating a Tinder or account. In fact we update our Tinder profile stating that we are on Tinder to find friends.

Making friends should come natural. Why can’t basic bitches find other basic bitches?

But friends move away. We take the job and we move away from our friends. Someone gets a boyfriend or someone finds a new best friend.

I think having friends and community around the world is awesome and it makes me want to travel, but I also think that you need to build community in your actual community. This means you have to make an effort to make new friends.

That soup does get cold from 1500 miles away.

Making New Friends in Your Twenties:

I need people. We need people. 

I realized this three years ago when I moved to Chicago and met Wednesday, well, we’ll call him “Wednesday” because I met him on a Wednesday.

I was coming home from work and waiting for the train. It was still winter so I rushed under the heat lamp and that’s where I met him.

We met up that night and even though he forgot his I.D. at home, he said “We don’t have to drink, I just want to get to know you.”

He became one of my best friends for the few months he was in Chicago. We both started our jobs a month prior and would meet up talking about how to do better at work and if decorating your desk makes you seem more personable.

It was so nice to have someone who was through the same thing I was—learning a new job and company culture.

We would literally meet at the train station and talk about our day and watch YouTube videos. He was French, so he introduced me to French rap, and we would listen to it as he helped me decorate my new apartment.

Like most people I have made friends with in my twenties, he’s living in another city now. But it was so nice to have him in my life.

And the same goes true for the friends I have made at organizations where I volunteer, and the group of bloggers who are now some of my best friends.

Chicago blogger, Matt Hensler and Amanda Elliott at a media brunch at Osteria La Media. Photo: Amanda Elliott


Asking Friends for Help is Weirder Than Ordering Take Out:

A fellow blogger just wrote a great article about community and the importance of community care, rather than self-care. Below is an excerpt from the article,”Why I don’t believe in “self care” (and how to make it obsolete).”

“But what if we can’t take care of ourselves?

The real problem is that self care is an enormous task. Nobody can take care of themselves 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. It’s just not possible. We know that’s true of children and the elderly, but for adults who think of themselves as competent, it can be a difficult thing to recognize.

Capitalism, and the individualism that supports it, have made us believe that as adults we have to take care of ourselves (and maybe our romantic partners). And so in order to get through it, we cope. We buy things we don’t really need, we eat out, and we shop for shiny new things. Because that way, it feels like we’re doing it all by ourselves. We believe that by paying for stuff, it means we’re taking care of ourselves, like capitalism tells us we are supposed to.

Do we really need that though…Why do I, an “independent,” mostly healthy woman with a good job and a house, need friends to come cook for me on a regular basis? Isn’t that something usually reserved for sick people or family?

Why does it seem weirder than ordering takeout?

Because instead of relying on my wages/capitalism to make dinner when I can’t, I’m relying on my community.

Community care means that we do things for the people around us. My friends come over and make dinner for me, but it’s not a one-way street. I handmade some cosmetics for the same friends, and let them have lots from my garden harvest last summer.  We don’t keep score – we just take care of each other when we can and when it’s needed.”

How to Make Friends in Your Twenties:

Making friends in your twenties and building community is one of the most rewarding ways to spend your time. Not only will you be building your network and helping yourself and others succeed, but your social life will be a lot more social and fulfilling.

Suggestions for Making New Friends Besides Via Dating Apps:

Let’s face it, having a girlfriend to do Wine Wednesday with is necessary.

Cheers to new friendships and moving to new cities.



Craving Thin Mints? Chicago Restaurant Adds Girl Scout Cookies

It’s Girl Scout cookie time (in case you  missed the Oscars).

And in Chicago, Girl Scouts are thinking big.

Pinstripes Bowling, Bocce, and Bistro  (Chicago, Northbrook, Oak brook, South Barrington) partnered to support the Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana by making a special edition dessert for their menu. The dessert is based off of the most popular Girl Scout cookie, Thin Mints.

For a limited time only,  enjoy the Thin Mint Gelato dessert at Pinstripes. So far, Pinstripes has purchased 3,000 Girl Scout cookies, but Chef Cesar said they are planning on purchasing up to 10,000 Girl Scout cookies due to popularity.

Thin Mint Gelato Recipe:

Already supported your neighborhood Girl Scout Troop and want to make this Thin Mint dessert at home? WGN-TV will show you how with a recipe and cooking video here.

Girl Scouts Encourages Female Entrepreneurs:

Girl Scouts is one of the largest national organizations that support girls by helping them build courage, confidence, and character to make the world a better place.

As a former Girl Scout leader (no, you don’t have to be a mom to do this!) in Chicago and a Girl Scout Gold Award winner, I appreciate what this organization does to help women become entrepreneurs and help their community.



Girl Scouts Troop in Chicago on a field trip at the Chicago Art Institute in Summer 2015. Photo: Amanda Elliott



The Women Who Lead Girl Scouts:

The Media Relations Manager, Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana, L’Oreal Thompson will be speaking at a SheSays Chicago and General Assembly event, “Remaking Me: A Conversation on Career Change.”

RSVP to the free career event here.