thanksgiving recipe for friendship

Thanksgiving Recipe for Gratitude and Friendship

Gratitude Thanksgiving Quote WilderWe can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures. ~Thornton Wilder

Overbooked with a huge shopping list, cooking special Thanksgiving recipes and coordinating multiple family events a friend complained that Thanksgiving was her least favorite holiday. She may have been just saying that, but between the focus on ‘Pinterest-worthy’ recipes and Facebook photograph-able home decorating, along with the shopping frenzy of Black Friday, it does seem that no one talks about the sentiment of the day set aside for giving thanks.

H.U. Westermayer wrote: The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving.

That’s a powerful reminder that we as a rich nation and a blessed generation. Even with terrorist attacks, fear, politics and poverty, the mass population will gather around a Thanksgiving turkey (or whatever they enjoy) with friends and family. We’ll watch parades, dogs and football. We’ll consume too many calories and may even set our alarms for an ungodly hour to go on a Black Friday shopping spree.

thanksgiving recipe for friendshipIt’s easy to get lost in the hectic holidays. But, let’s focus on the real meaning of Thanksgiving – to GIVE THANKS. The real Thanksgiving Recipe for Friendship is:

  • A Generous Cup of Blessings
  • A Tablespoon of Reflection
  • A Handful of Memories Together
  • A Good Helping of Hugs and Laughter
  • A Pint of Time with Friends and Family
  • Mix with Love and Forgiveness.

More girlfriend inspiration on Thanksgiving: (check these out for great Thanksgiving quotes and videos to share!)

Lastly, this was a hilarious reminder to avoid some conversations to have a more peaceful, happy (and musical) Thanksgiving. Thanks Saturday Night Live for showing us how to get along with family who may say inappropriate or sensitive things:

Happy Thanksgiving Girlfriends!

female friendship

What No One Tells You About FRIENDSHIP

female friendshipFriendship is great, right? The benefits are amazing too (feeling happier, healthier, less stressed, more beautiful and living longer). But what’s the downside?

What does no one tell you about female friendship?

Ellen was a wonderful neighbor. When we lived next door, we often shared meals and laughs – and mostly our lives. New addresses and busy schedules have interrupted the friendship somewhat but the foundation is there where we can pick up where we left off.

Tami was a beautiful friend and author. She became a friend from our local social media connections and in sharing her inspiring story on Girlfriendology.

Two amazing girlfriends. They never met each other but would have enjoyed getting to know the other wonderful girlfriend.

The ‘problem’ with having girlfriends … the problem with having lots of friends with lots of years of friendship … is that sometimes sad things happen. Being a friend means being there for the highs and, unfortunately, the lows of being a friend.

Ellen had surgery this week. A positive prognosis but still something that makes you stop and appreciate your friends (and your health). With my BFF Julie, I attended the ‘celebration of life’ for Tami on Sunday. An amazing advocate for cancer survivors (see below), Tami was a thoughtful, caring, loving mom and wife, and a friend to whomever she met. It was a messy-cry-kind-of service as her best friend, 15-year old daughter and sweet husband shared their personal stories and reflections.

The things no one warns you about (even me/Girlfriendology, who always challenges women to #BeABetterFriend) is that having friends, especially having lots of friends, is that sometimes things are REALLY low.

What no one tells you (about female friendship), is that sometimes it hurts, REALLY hurts.walking with a friend in the dark, dear girlfriend who is stressed

It does. The fear of surgery and the loss of a friend are both tragic and painful. A week of worrying about and losing a friend do not make a great week. But a life without friends, without amazing women who inspire and mean the world to me, is not something I ever want to face.

No one talks about how much friendship can hurt sometimes. But I’m okay with that. I know that the good definitely out-weighs the bad/sad part of friendship.

So, still do it – BE A BETTER FRIEND. No one tells you that sometimes friendship is painful, but I still choose to ‘do life’ with my friends. Life is better – with a friend by your side. I agree – ‘Walking with a FRIEND in the dark is (MUCH) better than walking alone in the light.’

In Memory of Tami: Breast Cancer Quotes: Love & Hope for Tami & other Girlfriends. Also, Tami is the author of two books: FROM INCURABLE TO INCREDIBLE: Cancer Survivors Who Beat the Odds and MIRACLE SURVIVORS: Beating the Odds of Incurable Cancer. Both share inspiration for others battling cancer with stories of strength and perseverance. Please consider these books at girlfriend gifts for women with cancer.

p.s. As Chris Graves wrote in her letter to her 15-year old self” “Make more girlfriends; you’ll need them later!

For those LOW days/weeks …

make more girlfriends

From Bad to BESTIE: The Girlfriend Guide to being a Better FRIEND

make more girlfriendsMake more girlfriends; you will need them later.” Chris Graves

My friend Chris (who is a brilliant reporter/writer – leave it to a journalist to use a “;” :) wrote the above in her ‘letter to her 15 year-old self.’ It’s great women’s wisdom for all of us — FRIENDS are super important.

Female Friendships make women healthier, happier, less stressed, live longer and feel more beautiful.

Those wonderful benefits of female friendship improve our quality of life and are key to our happiness. So, we compiled a guide for women friends: ‘From Bad to Bestie: The Girlfriend Guide to being a Better Friend‘:

  1. 3 Reasons Why Women Make BAD FRIENDS: Unfortunately, we’ve all experienced it … a girlfriend who doesn’t return our calls when we’ve expressed a need for her help, a friend who never gives thoughtful gifts, a BFF who takes something little the wrong way and then ends the friendship. It begs the question WHY? Why are Women often Bad Friends? (And how can we turn this around to being a better friend?)
  2. A Best Friend cares about Your WHY (Purpose / Dreams): Girlfriend, what’s your WHY? What are your dreams/hopes? What is the PURPOSE of your life? Have you shared these with a girlfriend? Have you asked your friends about their Purpose/Dreams? We have the great honor of inspiring the women in our lives. We can show them by our example what it means to ‘be a better friend,’ to care about each other and our dreams.
  3. Show your Friendship in Random Acts of KINDNESS: Do something kind and unexpected. Challenge yourself to carefully and thoughtfully identify a need or want that would make her happy. Be the kind of friend you’d love to have. And, then experience the ‘euphoria’ of kindness. Feel the benefits yourself of being generous, considerate, a friend. Be a better friend, because life really is better together.
  4. Make TIME for your Girlfriends: Why don’t we work to have not only a life/work balance, but to have a life/friendship balance? Probably the most common excuse for not making time for our girlfriends is that we don’t have the time. We have kids, jobs, homes, relationships, dirty clothes, meals to prepare, dishes to do and all the wonderful other things that women do on a daily basis. We constantly juggle deadlines and budgets, try to take care of ourselves and our families, and often don’t even sleep well to be rested for another day of responsibilities and expectations. Here’s our girlfriend advice for being a better friend and maintaining a life/ friendship balance.time friendship quote
  5. Be the Friend who BELIEVES in Her: By spending time with our girlfriends, we remember why we need our FRIENDS and how we should strive to #BeABetterFriend 😉 — GIRLFRIENDS BELIEVE IN US! Between the advice and sharing, build on the years of trust and support, was the wonderful girlfriend gift of love and support. Bottom line: she believes in me and my dreams, and I do the same for my girlfriend.
  6. Be a Better LISTENER: Listening is a key component to any friendship or relationship. It’s taking an active role in conversations by asking questions, probing and sometimes just quietly noting your words and thoughts. It’s so vital to friendships that I thought it would be good to possibly ‘touch up’ our listening skills so we can be a better friend. Here are Six Ways to be a Better Listener and enhance your friendships.
  7. Developing HABITS to be a Better Friend: We can develop HABITS that lead to better friendships – WE CAN. I took some inspiration from  The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People in thinking about the habits of great girlfriends. It’s great advice and even applies to female friendship, so here goes … The Seven Habits of Great Girlfriends (Taken from Steven Covey’s book, with a girlfriend slant!)
  8. Experiencing Girlfriend GRATITUDE: Why do we focus on the things we don’t have rather than the blessings of all the things we do have? Why do we overlook the joy to mainly see the struggle and perhaps injustice in our world? It’s unfortunate but true – we don’t feel near as blessed as we should. And to do so, we have to intentionally look at the positive things in our life – like how our friends support, courage and inspire us. How we can be more intention with our girlfriend gratitude? Being more appreciative of our friendships and thankful for the wonder women in our world.
  9. Great Girlfriends give THOUGHTFUL GIFTS: It doesn’t have to be expensive or exotic, big or fancy, but the perfect gift from a girlfriend is thoughtful and personal. It could just be special time together or a little gift with a big heart. We love when the women who know us best, give us thoughtful girlfriend gifts that are perfect for us.
  10. 5 SECRETS of a Great Friendship: Female friendship is THE relationships that makes us healthier, happier, less stressed, live longer and feel more beautiful. (If Oprah sold a pill that delivered these results, EVERYONE would buy them!) So, how can we have great friendships? We’re got a few tips for girlfriends to make life a lot more fun by having friends! (HINT: #1 – Shut up and LISTEN! Right?! Sorry, not sorry!)

Are you a BAD friend or a BESTIE BFF? Be a better friend – you’ll need them later.

what is your why

Great Girlfriend ? to Ask: ‘What’s your WHY?’ (Inspired by Problogger)

purpose,quote,girlfriend advice,inspirationWhat’s your life purpose? What’s your WHY?

As a girlfriend, I care about my friends’ lives and want them to be happy, I want them to live a life with purpose and to encourage me to do the same. Life is too short not to make it meaningful, right? (And friend-filled!)

I listen to a lot of podcasts. I’ve found one that I absolutely love, learn and appreciate by Darrin Rowse, aka: PROBLOGGER. He’s a super smart, insightful and thoughtful person who helps bloggers blog better.

One of his podcasts that inspired me was #39: What’s Your Why? In it he asks the listener to really stop and think about why they do what they do (or blog what they blog). Why did they start? What inspired them? What are their goals? Their dreams?

It made me think back to 2005 when I bought the URL ‘’ I was inspired by my two great girlfriends who were dealing with cancer. I wanted to be a better friend and sincerely thought that I could make the world a better place, one friendship at a time. That if Girlfriendology inspired you to be a better friend, then your friendship would inspire other women to do the same and we could strengthen the bond and the blessing of girlfriends. It’s still my dream, my WHY.

10 years is a long time for a blog and a dream, but it kept going and growing – slowly, but the focus on women and friendships and supporting each other still continues.what is your why

As Darrin / Problogger puts it:

  • How having a clear understanding of your ‘why’ can motivate you through challenging times and improve your productivity
  • How having a clear understanding of your ‘why’ can help you make tough decisions

Girlfriend, what’s your WHY? What are your dreams/hopes? What is the PURPOSE of your life?

Have you shared these with a girlfriend? Have you asked your friends about their Purpose/Dreams?

We have the great honor of inspiring the women in our lives. We can show them by our example what it means to ‘be a better friend,’ to care about each other and our dreams.

What’s YOUR Why? How can Girlfriendology help? Share with your girlfriends. And Be a Better Friend. (and THANKS Problogger for your inspiration and caring about our WHY.)

Check out these resources about finding your Why:


anticipate happiness inspiration quote

Happiness in Anticipation of Happiness | Girlfriend Happiness Journey

anticipate happiness inspiration quote

Listen girlfriend – I want you to be happy.

That’s why we’re looking at happiness this week on Girlfriendology. We believe that, in addition to friendship impacting your happiness, talking about happiness can help us focus on the good things in life (like girlfriends). Today, let’s explore the anticipation of happiness …

“I can’t wait for…”

You fill in the blank. Halloween. School to start. A girlfriend trip. Christmas. To try that new recipe. The big concert. My birthday. To see you. A day off.

I just stumbled upon a pretty amazing happiness factor that I believe I’ve known about all along. Apparently, the “I can’t wait for” period before any positively anticipated event is among the happiest periods of time we go through. In fact, the studies and statistics have shown that the happiness we get out of the anticipation of an event is more often than not, greater than the happiness we experience in the event! I know, it sounds crazy but when I started thinking about it, I realized that the run up to so many of what I look forward to as happy events are filled with really happy feelings.

“If you come at four in the afternoon, I’ll begin to be happy by three.”

 Antoine de Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince

In effect, we are pre-playing the event in our minds and guess what? Everything about the imagined experience is perfect, including the weather, the company, the food, the music.

It’s the anticipation of an event that causes kids to jump up and down with happiness well ahead of a birthday or a trip to the toy store. We get a boost of happiness when we delay any kind of pleasure, which is one reason why we use massive amounts of willpower to delay eating that piece of chocolate cake in the fridge.

A great example of this happiness in anticipation phenomenon is found in the musings of a storybook bear who loves his honey.

“Well,” said Pooh, “what I like best,” and then he had to stop and think. Because although eating honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn’t know what it was called.

Winne-the-Pooh had it right. Don’t worry that reality can’t possibly live up to the anticipation, don’t try to control your expectations, the anticipation is so much a part of the happiness you get out of life’s wonderful moments.

You will certainly enjoy the moment when it arrives, and get a great deal of happiness after the fact in the memories you’ve made and sharing the experience with friends, although it’s believe there is more happiness to be derived in the anticipation of an event rather than in its memory.

So a big key to your happiness girlfriend, is to always have something pleasant to look forward to. If life is all about routines, obligations and not-fun-but-gotta-get-done things, plan something fun for your future. Girlfriend traditions / get-togethers are a great way to experience some shared anticipatory happiness. Taking a vacation may not make you happier, but anticipating it will! Enjoy the planning. Talk about your anticipation with friends, because people get more enjoyment – happiness – out of talking about experiences rather than things. You might go so far as to start a vacation countdown, (yes there is an app for that).

Let’s make fun plans with friends – vacations, traditions, sharing a meal or a beverage. Let’s anticipate every minute we have with our friends. Then when those special moments with friends are over, let’s look back with fun memories and make more fun plans with friends to anticipate!

What are you looking forward to, girlfriend? Get happy about it!

For more on happiness, check out these books :)



5 ways to be Happier | Women & Happiness

happier,happiness,friendshipA good friend wants you to be happy. Right? A best friend will do whatever it takes to make sure you’re happy. Life is about happiness, right? Thankfully our girlfriends care about our happiness.

A World Happiness Database study found that people with close friendships are happier.

That’s why, as a girlfriend, we want our friends to be HAPPY. Here’s our 5 ways to be Happier:

  1. Do what you love. I was raised by an artist mom and I’m creative. I know that I need to find creative outlets in my life to be happy. What makes YOU happy? What do YOU love? As a girlfriend, I want you to go after your dreams – to be happy in what you do with your life. So, please … do what YOU love!
  2. Spend time with people you love. Life is way too short to spend time with people who don’t love and value you as much as you deserve. Our time is limited and we get to choose the way we spend our time. Busy? Doesn’t matter. Time is limited. Spend it with the best people you know – the friends that honestly love and care about you. (Want to know how to find time for your friends? Check it out!)
  3. Make others happy. It’s a funny thing – but making others happy actually makes us even more happy. Do a favor for a friend. Make her feel special – make her life easier. Give a thoughtful, perfect gift. Remember to ask about her day, job review, doctor appointment. Make it about her, not you. Do the little things that make her happy. I guarantee you, you’ll be happy too.
  4. Appreciate the real things. It’s not the monetary, big things that matter – it’s the friends who were there for us, the little things that make us feel special. It’s also the sunset, laughter from a child, wag of a dog’s tail, shoe sale, the comfort of a hand to hold whenever you need them. It’s the little things. Be thankful. That will make you happy, and that’s a very good thing.
  5. Be happy with you. Girlfriend, you are perfect. You are enough. You have everything in you that you need. You are loved by your friends. Your friends don’t see any wrinkles or weaknesses, gray hairs or flaws. Please know that you are loved just the way you are. Your girlfriends see all the beauty and the gifts that you possess. Your true friends want you to see what they see – that you are perfect just the way you are.

Girlfriends – your friends, me included, want you to be happy.

What’s your advice for happiness? What do you wish you or your girlfriends were reminded to be happy about? Please share.

For more on happiness, check out these books :)


how to make friends as an adult

How to make Friends as an Adult – Be a better Friend!

how to make friends as an adultMaking Friends as an adult isn’t quite as easy as when we were kids. No more playground or sitting by the same kid everyday at school, we have grown-up lives and busy schedules and, for some of us, friendships just don’t happen. So, how do we make new friends as an adult?

“Smile at people everywhere you go. Don’t just give them one of those half-smirk/head nod things. Raise your eyebrows, show those teeth, and chuckle while you smile. Next time you’re at the store, give a full-hearted smile to at least three complete strangers. You’ll be amazed at what this does for them and for you.”
Single Dad Laughing

Tip 1: Be Friendly. Smile. But don’t just ‘smile’ – smile at people, in a real smile kind-of-way. Smile at strangers. Pass your smile along to others. See what kind of response you get – I bet they smile back and you just might make a friend.

“Be genuinely interested in everyone you meet and everyone you meet will be genuinely interested in you”
“>Irene S. Levine, Best Friends Forever

Tip 3: Give it time as you share your life. Learn to trust. Our friend Irene Levine offers great advice on making friends as an adult. We can’t just have an instant BFF, it is something that grows out of time and trust.

“I don’t make friends based on how big their pockets are or how well connected they are; rather I make friends based on how positive their minds are. It is hard to end up with a very complicated lifestyle if you are always surrounded by positive minded individuals.”
― Edmond Mbiaka

Tip 4: Be Positive – friends will find you. Attitude is everything when it comes to making friends as an adult. No one wants to be around negative people, right? Be the kind of person you’d like to be friends with. Then, be the kind of friend you’d love to have!

Aside from the dis on ‘Sex and the City’ 😉  check out these 4 tips to make Friends as an Adult this video about making new friends.

  1. Be vulnerable: Change your definition of ‘cool’ from indifferent to excited. Be the person who is open to friends and friendships.
  2. Be an initiator: Connect with others. Make an effort to get to know people and invite people (aka: potential friends) to join you.
  3. Contribute: Add value back to others. It might be humor or insights or fun or POSITIVITY, make sure you bring something good to the friendship.
  4. Give it a try: Don’t cut yourself off new friends. Be friendly. Be open to new friendships.

What are your tips for making friends as an adult?


5 Secrets to a Great Friendship


I don’t want to imagine where I would be without girlfriends. Think about it … life without the women who support us when we doubt ourselves, no one to share our sadness with, no friend to call on our way home from work to process the day, no BFF to share our dreams with. As the girlfriend quote says: FRIENDS MAKE LIFE A LOT MORE FUN.

I cannot even imagine where I would be today were it not for that handful of friends who have given me a heart full of joy. Let’s face it, friends make life a lot more fun.
Charles R. Swindoll

Female friendship is THE relationships that makes us healthier, happier, less stressed, live longer and feel more beautiful. (If Oprah sold a pill that delivered these results, EVERYONE would buy them!) So, how can we have great friendships? We’re got a few tips for girlfriends to make life a lot more fun by having friends!

5 Secrets to a Great Friendship:

1. Shut up and Listen. Sorry to be rude, but we all get busy, have things we need to tell someone, and forget to be there for our best friends. Try letting her talk first and wait until you’re sure she’s shared all that she needs to share before you start on your life. Even if your girlfriends aren’t good listeners to you, show them what it is like to have a friend who cares and who really listens.

2. Make the time, no matter what. Work will always be there, so will dirty clothes, house projects or shoe sales. What won’t always be there? Unfortunately girlfriends aren’t always there. Friends come and go, girlfriends have houses and projects and dirty clothes too. Even if it is just coffee or a walk or a phone call on the way to work. Make time for girlfriends – she deserves it and you do too.

3. It’s not the big things. A girlfriend posted on Facebook today about a funeral she just attended for a friend’s mom. The kids shared great stories about their mom. Not one story had anything about gifts she’d bought for them, expensive trips or anything monetary. They remembered the little things – how she attended their games (see #2 – made the time for them!), welcomed their friends into their home, and how she made them feel loved. It’s not the big things – gifts, expensive purchases, spoiling them with possessions – it’s about time together and the little things.

4. Give her grace. Maybe she’s not there for you right now but she has been in the past. We all have times where life messes with our friendships. Forgive her when she forgets to call you back or can’t fit you in her schedule for a week or two or three. Understand that your friendship is still important to her. Give her grace and maybe a little time. Friends are worth it.

5. Make an effort to make it fun. Friends make life more fun, and that’s especially true when friends get together. You make an effort for your partner and for your kids – but do you make an effort for your girlfriends? Plan a concert, a special event, a thoughtful gift, and making amazing memories together. Start a girlfriend tradition (like book club or a gourmet girlfriends group) so you see each other more often. Just make it about your friends, and make sure to make it fun.

Here’s some more ideas on how to BE A BETTER FRIEND:


New York Times Power BFFs

The Female Friendship Myth: Female BFFs — The New Power Couples

New York Times Power BFFs

Power BFFs from the New York Times

What do you and Taylor Swift have in common? Maybe just your BFF power status, according to the New York Times article on : Female BFFs — the New Power Couples.

It’s not just Taylor, but Beyonce, Lena Dunn, the Kardashians, and more (see below) – female friendship is ‘in’ (we never thought it wasn’t, to be honest!).

The New Republic recently reported on the Female Friendship Myth. The myth is that “when your job is falling far short of what you hoped and men are nothing but disappointment, your life is about your best girlfriends.”

How does this media popularity of female friendship impact our personal friendships? What role does Social Media play in our relationships and our display of our female friendships?

It’s true – we women need, love, benefit from our female friendships, so we understand how Taylor Swift and other celebrities are flaunting their friendships. Actually when we’re with our girlfriends, we’re often our most beautiful – we’re happy, confident and smiling. That’s one reason these friendship photos are flooding social media. We love an ‘usie’ with our BFFs, right?

From the New York Times: Lately, we’ve been inundated with images of real-life best friends, triumphantly displayed. It’s difficult to get through a day on the Internet without looking at photos of women flaunting the depth of their intimacy by posing over dinner or watching television together in matching pajamas. We now flick through images not of celebrity couples but of celebrity friends: Beyoncé and Nicki Minaj eating hamburgers in matching varsity jackets; Taylor Swift with Karlie Kloss, Lorde, Selena Gomez, Ellie Goulding, Lena Dunham, her cat Olivia, the entire runway lineup of a Victoria’s Secret show; the U.S. women’s soccer team. The meme factories have responded to the popularity of pictures of best friends with maximum output, harvesting groups of women posing on beaches and in limos from celebrity Instagram feeds and presenting them in slide shows (see: “16 of Taylor Swift’s Best BFFs,” “Ranking Taylor Swift’s 25 Best Best Friends,” “Taylor Swift Has Best Friends to Spare!” and “Taylor Swift Has More Best Friends Than You Ever Will“) and labeling these images as “#friendspiration” and “#squadgoals.”

The New Republic: “… pins the blame on social media, writing that the technology of the last decade has increased the public performance of friendship. There’s certainly an element of this. Facebook, for example, can contribute to such concerns; it’s suddenly possible to feel excluded from an event that, pre-Facebook, one wouldn’t have cared was happening. But the fear of not having enough or close enough friends goes much deeper, and predates Taylor Swift performances or Instagram.”

New Republic Female Friendship Myth

New Republic Female Friendship Myth

Do you have your power BFFs? Do you take photos together and post them on social media?

That’s okay. We love that trend. We love seeing photos of women celebrating the relationship with their best friends – that makes women healthier, happier, less stressed, live longer and feel more beautiful.

We know this really isn’t a trend. It’s the foundation of friendship and we’re glad that the female friendship relationship is getting a lot of LIKES in social media.

And in closing, as they New York Times put it: “Close friendships are worth celebrating — but it is how they look at their least photogenic moments that proves their veracity.”

Want to know how to have more friends? Be a Better Friend? You’re in the right place! Check out this girlfriend advice …

girlfriend gifts

Girlfriend Gifts: 5 ways to pick the perfect Gift for your BFF

girlfriend giftsOn the list of ‘How to be a Better Friend‘ is giving a perfect gift to a girlfriend for her birthday, holiday or special day. We love when the women who know us best, give us thoughtful girlfriend gifts that are perfect for us. (Like my awesome gifts* from my BFF Terri last week – thanks! LOVE THEM and YOU! Read examples below!) We’re getting ready for Christmas gift giving, holidays and the season of shopping. Here’s some thoughtful, personalized girlfriend gift ideas!

Our goal is to BE A BETTER FRIEND and that means giving gifts to our girlfriends that show them that they’re special and that their friendship means so much to us. Here are 5 ways to pick the perfect Gift for your Girlfriends:

1. Know her Style: My friend Cath is a beautiful blonde who loves to accent her outfits with gold jewelry. Remembering the little details about a friend (like her personal preferences and style) shows that you know HER. This collection of Freeform Metal gold jewelry TOTALLY reminded me of my girlfriend Cath. It’s finding those gifts that remind you of your BFFs that make it fun to give gifts for birthdays, holidays, special days or whenever!

2. Listen and Look for Hints: Pay attention to the catalogs she receives, the clothes she wears, the hints she ‘drops’ in conversations. Anticipate her needs and wants based on her personal preferences and life situation. If she has a new job, maybe a girlfriend gift of a new scarf to wear to work. Think of girlfriend gifts that will surprise her and make her smile. That’s a great feeling for both friends!

Life is a beautiful ride girlfriend gift3. Make it Personal: I love personal gifts that have been selected specifically for ME, don’t you? Please don’t give a gift that could have any woman’s name on it – from a coworker, to your mom! Girlfriends love gifts that are selected specifically for THEM. For example … If she’s going on a bike tour or race, give her a ‘Life is a Beautiful Ride’ pillow. If she loves wine, give her special wine girlfriend glasses that remind her of you (like these my girlfriends gave me!).

4. Gifts that Inspire Women: We all need a little encouragement at times – a girlfriend who believes in us and our dreams. Give a girlfriend gift that says you believe in her and that you want her to live the life of her dreams. Inspiring gifts like Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, by Elizabeth Gilbert or Louder than Words: Harness the Power of Your Own Words, by (my friend) Todd Henry will remind her that you believe in her and the power of her dreams.

5. Give her the Gift of an Experience: A recent article in the The Atlantic shared the benefits of experiences over ‘things.’ From the happiness of anticipation (for a trip or experience together) to the gratitude for the memories created together, most of us would rather that time with our girlfriends than ‘stuff.’ A couple ideas … start traditions that bring you together (like a monthly dinner with a friend or a girlfriend group gathering on a regular basis). Celebrate ‘special birthdays’ with girlfriend trips or checking something off her list of things she’d love to try. Here’s some ideas – Holiday Girlfriend Traditions you can start this year and 10 Girlfriend Traditions for any time of the year.

We’re heading into the Christmas shopping season and birthdays happen year ’round. Do you give thoughtful, personalized girlfriend gifts? Do you give gifts that make her feel as special as her friendship is to you? Be a better friend! Follow these 5 ways to pick the perfect Gift for your Girlfriends!

wine girlfriend book club gift* What were the perfect girlfriend gifts that I got from my BFF Terri? Glad you asked! They’re perfect examples of giving a girlfriend a gift that is custom to her and that will make her feel happy and special! A little local history – in Minnesota they don’t play ‘Duck, Duck, Goose’ they play ‘Duck, Duck, Gray Duck.’ (Don’t ask me why!) So, as a reminder of my memories and wonderful friends in Minnesota, I now am the proud owner of a t-shirt with ‘Gray Duck’ on it – Love it! And … another girlfriend gift that shows she knows me well! My girlfriend book club is, let’s just say, not so much about the BOOK. It’s much more about wine with women and sharing our lives. So, thoughtful gift-giver Terri gave me the perfect book bag to carry to book club and everywhere! Great girlfriends gifts, right?!

girlfriend,inspiration,follow your dreams

Friends who Believe in You! Friendship & Inspiration for Women

Female friendship to me includes a big dose of support, encouragement and inspiration for women, right?

girlfriend,inspiration,follow your dreamsExample: The other night my BFF and I had an impromptu girlfriend dinner where, as we often do, we shared ideas for each others businesses. And, as usual, we enthusiastically brainstormed ideas, explored ways to be successful, shared tips and tools (one below!) that can assist in our success and in meeting our goals and going after our dreams.

Follow your dreams, believe in yourself and don’t give up. — Rachel Corrie

It was the perfect reminder of why we need our FRIENDS and how we should strive to #BeABetterFriend 😉 — GIRLFRIENDS BELIEVE IN US! Between the advice and sharing, build on the years of trust and support, was the wonderful girlfriend gift of love and support. Bottom line: she believes in me and my dreams, and I do the same for my girlfriend.
THAT, my friend, is why I started Girlfriendology. We don’t get the benefits of friendship (like those amazing dinners and conversations that change the direction of our lives and impact our happiness) IF we don’t invest the time and support in our girlfriends. Unless we make time for our friends, we don’t get those special times with our friends – we just don’t.
So today’s GIRLFRIEND CHALLENGE is to make plans with a friend. Maybe try to make plans with a friend who you haven’t seen in a while. It could even be a long distance girlfriend who you make plans to FaceTime or Skype with, a busy friend who you have to remind that she needs to spend time with her friends (aka: YOU!), or a new friend that you think needs support or encouragement. But, just do it.
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to believe in a friend and to feel the amazing benefit of female friendship: that she believes in you!

Life is short. Be a Better Friend.Girlfriendology,Periscope

p.s. One of the topics my BFF and I talked about for our businesses is a new social network – PERISCOPE. It’s like having your own live conversation with your friends/fans/followers. Check out Girlfriendology on Periscope – we’re talking everyday about how to be a better friend, girlfriend inspirations and challenges, and fun stuff girlfriends share. (Oh my! I even live streamed a Scope from the gym with no make-up on yesterday!) And check out my girlfriend, the amazing, smart and super Scoper – Julie on Brave Writer on Periscope. Everyday she shares amazing inspiration for homeschooling moms! See you on Periscope!
Love, Miracles, Breast Cancer, Friendship

Breast Cancer Quotes: Love & Hope for Tami & other Girlfriends

Love, Miracles, Breast Cancer, FriendshipI started Girlfriendology over eight years ago because of Dana and Allison. Two of my dear girlfriends were dealing with cancer and I just felt lost and hopeless. I wanted to be a better friend to them and to inspire women to be there for each other. I wanted to make the world better – one friendship at a time.

Years and thousands of blog posts later, I’m still blogging and unfortunately I still have girlfriends dealing with the evil disease of cancer.

Right now I’d like to send out love, prayers and surrounding hugs of support to my friend Tami is fighting stage-four cancer.

Tami is an AMAZING woman who took on cancer with a vengeance that only a woman with power could do.

Tami is the author of two books: FROM INCURABLE TO INCREDIBLE: Cancer Survivors Who Beat the Odds and MIRACLE SURVIVORS: Beating the Odds of Incurable Cancer. Both share inspiration for others battling cancer with stories of strength and perseverence. Please consider these books at girlfriend gifts for women with cancer.

It is in honor of her that I share these quotes for girlfriends with cancer, and the friends and family who love them … Be STRONG Girlfriend. You never know who you’re inspiring.

Be strong girlfriend breast cancer quote

 One of my favorite quotes for all girlfriends (because we all got our ‘stuff’, right?) … “Life doesn’t have to be perfect to be WONDERFUL.” Annette Funicello

life doesnt have to be perfect

A reminder that ‘Cancer is a word, not a sentence.’ As my friend Dana used to say – she didn’t want breast cancer to define who she was, only SHE got to define who she really was …

Girlfriendology cancer quote, friendship quotes

pink girlfriend gifts, breast cancer gifts, gifts for girlfriends

and this quote by Tami … “The Beatles say ‘All you need is Love.’ But those of us with cancer may need a little more.”

helping friends with cancer tami boehmer


and check out Ten Tips for Helping a Friend with Breast Cancer.


pink girlfriend gifts, breast cancer gifts, gifts for girlfriends

Supporting our Friends with Breast Cancer – Pink Girlfriend Gifts & more

The reason I started Girlfriendology was because of Dana and Allison. Each had cancer and I wanted to be a better friend to them. Dana’s battle with Breast Cancer inspired me to share previous posts on 10 Ways to be a better friend to a friend with Breast Cancer, Ten Tips for Helping a Friend with Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer and Friendship, and from our dear friend who is battling Breast Cancer – Helping our Girlfriends with Cancer, by Tami Boehmer.

Each October is a reminder of Dana and Allison (and Holly). Three amazing women and girlfriends who so unfortunately have lost their battle with cancer. Each October reminds me to be thankful for each day with my girlfriends and for their and my health. Each October is a reminder that we have to take care of each other, make our friends feel as special as their friendship is to us, to be thoughtful and kind.

pink girlfriend gifts, breast cancer gifts, gifts for girlfriendsFor our friends who need inspiration, who are dealing with more than they should be, we want to show them we support them and we want to be a great friend. Here are some pink girlfriend gifts for girlfriends

* ALWAYS REMEMBER … what a great reminder to show your girlfriend(s) that they are braver, stronger and loved MORE. Give her this girlfriend gift perfect for inspiring her days and reminding her of your fun, supportive friendship.

* CHEMO KIT – It’s too tough. Send/give her a pink girlfriend gift to deal with breast cancer and chemo. From the ‘Chicken Soup for the Soup’ book to body wash to comfy socks and more, this girlfriend gift pampers her when she needs to feel her friends close.

* CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR’S SOUL – Along with the shock, fear and loss many women face upon a breast cancer diagnosis comes unexpected strength, wisdom, and strong networks of sharing, support and healing. In Chicken Soup for the Breast Cancer Survivor’s Soul, survivors and their family members talk openly about how difficult their fight with breast cancer has been and how they made it through the dark times with a belief in a higher power and the support of those closest to them.

* FIGHT LIKE A GIRL COFFEE TUMBLER – Remind her with every cup of coffee that she has what it takes to fight whatever life brings her. In all you do, FIGHT LIKE A GIRL!

* FROM INCURABLE TO INCREDIBLE: Cancer Survivors Who Beat the Odds and MIRACLE SURVIVORS: Beating the Odds of Incurable Cancer by my dear friend TAMI BOEHMER who is fighting cancer with ever cell in her body. Give these incredible books to any friends fighting cancer.

My thoughts and prayers with Tami and with thoughts of great love and support for any girlfriends dealing with breast cancer or cancer of any kind. Life is too short. Be a better friend.




Losing the Girls | A Story About Breast Cancer from Girlfriend Survivor Anne Day

masectomy Breast Cancer Awareness MonthDuring National Breast Cancer Awareness Month we are featuring wonderful stories from girlfriends who have been touched in some way by breast cancer.

Today’s guest blog is by ANNE DAY. Her story will make you smile, maybe cry a little, and hopefully it will remind you how important early detection is.

Ten years ago — January 9, 2005, to be precise — I lost two close friends. I’d known them all my life; we’d hung out and even worked together. It was a true loss, and life was not the same without them.

That’s the date when I had my double mastectomy.

Now, this was my second bout with breast cancer. The first had been when I was thirty-nine and my daughters were little. Like many women, I found that first lump myself. It had spread to my lymph nodes, so I had the full regime — lumpectomy, chemo, and radiation.

Denial was my main coping strategy. I wasn’t going to die; that just wasn’t an option. I simply had to get through this, and my life would continue as before. But of course it didn’t.

I learned a lot through those tough months and it was my girlfriends who got me through it. Taking me home after chemo, cooking meals, looking after my daughters, sending me cards and letters saying how much they loved me. I felt enveloped and cocooned in a sea of their love.

But some friends just totally could not handle it. They didn’t know what to say, were scared for me, and for themselves, and just disappeared. I decided that this was their problem, not mine, and I tried not to take it personally.

On the other hand, mere acquaintances just appeared with random acts of kindness. One neighbor would bring dinners for the family on days when I had chemo. My daughters so loved her cooking that they asked if she did breakfasts.

I chose to stay working. It gave our lives some normalcy. I didn’t want to be sitting at home having a pity party, and probably, on reflection, I also didn’t want to spend too much time really thinking about what was happening or, more to the point, what could happen.

But it wasn’t all bad either—it sure changes your attitude and makes you focus on what’s important. I tried not to sweat the small stuff. I also found out how much people loved me.

After fifteen years, I got lulled into believing I was safe. But I had forgotten that once you are a member of the exclusive C Club, your membership never really expires. And sure enough, in 2005, I had to pay my dues again. This time I had decided that I wanted both breasts removed. As I explained to my girlfriend, “I want a level playing field.”

Our breasts are very much part of our womanhood. At first I didn’t like seeing myself in the mirror; although, with both gone, I felt less disfigured.  But my body is not who I am; it is not my essence.

As someone who works with women, I felt I had a responsibility to speak out and share my news with Company of Women members. I wanted to encourage them to go for the mammograms, do the self-check, and show that having cancer is no longer a death sentence.

Injecting some humor into the situation, I talked about being “upfront,” making a “clean breast” of what was happening to me, and the fact that as a weight-loss strategy it stunk, because they only weighed two pounds at the most.

There was a hush in the room at first, as the women grappled with the news. Some cried; others looked horrified, likely reflecting on how they would feel if they lost their breasts. But there was laughter, too. As I was quick to point out, I was not planning to “check out” as I had too much to do.

I was later flooded with cards and letters of love from people. It was like hearing the eulogies at your funeral without having to die first.

So much of life we take for granted, but when it all could disappear just like that, you learn to enjoy the moment, speak your truth, and be who you are meant to be.

Plus, the really good news — no more mammograms!

ANNE DAY is the founder of Company of Women, an organization that supports women in business. She is the author of Day by Day – Tales of business, life and everything in between. You can reach her at or or follow her blog at

Thanks Anne for this touching story and wonderful reminder for taking care of ourselves, our girlfriends and our bodies.

Who has been there for you when you needed them? How could you be a better friend to a friend going through cancer? Share in the comments.

By the way, we love guest blogs and welcome them especially this month with friendship/breast cancer inspiration.

For more girlfriend advice on cancer and female friendships, check out these blog posts:

10 ways to be a better friend to a friend with breast cancer

10 Ways to be a better friend to a friend with Breast Cancer

10 ways to be a better friend to a friend with breast cancerGirlfriendology, the online community for women based on female friendship, is observing Breast Cancer Awareness Month by sharing 10 ways to be a better friend to a girlfriend with breast cancer, chemotherapy and the incredible stress, worry, fear and emotion it involves.

The lessons come from women who have undergone treatment for breast cancer. They are friends of founder Debba Haupert who shared their honest opinions and insights. Haupert points out that this can be a difficult topic for many, and that every woman faces cancer differently, so one woman’s needs can differ from another’s.

With more than 2 million breast cancer survivors in the U.S., chances are you know someone dealing with the disease. Here’s how to be a good friend during a difficult time:

1.    Provide encouragement – Sometimes a woman is looking for a friend simply to affirm that she is doing all the right things and that she’s going to be okay. Remind her of her strengths and victories, uphold her decisions and encourage her to keep going.

2.    Listen – Listen without judgment, whenever it’s needed. Avoid easy answers or telling her to buck up and be strong. There are times when cancer can be overwhelming and they need to talk about it. Be the person they need – and simply listen. Let them process their thoughts aloud, listen and care.

3.    Offer help – Instead of saying open-endedly, “Let me know if you need anything,” ask precisely what you can do. Ask your friend if she’d like you to bring dinner, do laundry, babysit or go grocery shopping for her. Offer to help by doing Internet research on treatments and remedies. Identify what needs to be done and ask if you can help her by doing it.

4.    Cheer her up – Do things that really help and buoy spirits. Knit or buy her a pair of fuzzy pink socks. Give her an inspiring book or pink gifts. Celebrate the end of each treatment with champagne. Give her a gift certificate for a massage or a manicure. Help her deal with the hair loss – take her wig shopping, buy a hat or buff for her or, like some girlfriends do, shave your head in solidarity.

5.    Be understanding – Plato said “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” Your girlfriend is going to have good and bad days, so be patient on those days when she may say something she might not mean, or not mean it the way it sounded. She is fighting a life-changing battle and deserves your patience, grace and understanding. Don’t take things personally… cut your girlfriend some slack.

6.    Help her communicate – She may not want to talk about cancer all the time. While she’ll appreciate your interest in how she’s doing, it can be wearing to go through all the details again and again. Help her set up a blog or start a chain phone list for updates.

7.    Laughter is the best medicine – Give or lend her your romantic comedy movies or books, or take her to a chick flick – just make sure there are no cancer storylines. Send her funny cards or wrap up silly presents so she has fun gifts to open. Be flexible with your time – and jump at the chance to be with her when she’s feeling good. Back off when she asks because she’s feeling not so good. Take off time from work if you need to be with her.

8.    Offer inspiration – Share stories of people who have gone through the same thing and are doing well years later. We all need inspiration, reassurance and optimism. It’s even better if you can connect your friend with those people so they can talk to them. Never talk about people who have died of cancer or are not doing well.

9.    Friendship endurance – Be in this friendship for the long haul. There are going to be good and bad days, weeks, and months. Be her friend no matter what, and even when the treatments seem to go on forever – that simply means that she’s still your girlfriend. Continue to be there for her.

10. Celebrate life together! Look for opportunities to be together, to share memories and moments to remember, go on an adventure or explore together, laugh together and cry together when needed. See the beauty in each day as her friend and let her know that. Celebrate each day of friendship.

Remember friendship is like marriage – in sickness and in health. Be there for her and enjoy every day of your friendship. And, in observation of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, early detection is the best protection so practice self-exams and mammograms for your own health. Girlfriends need to remind each other that as well.

Girlfriendology is the online community for women based on inspiration, appreciation and celebration of female friendship. Founded by Debba Haupert in 2006, Girlfriendology inspires women to make new female acquaintances, spend time with their girlfriends, and appreciate those friendships that are vital to women’s health and happiness. features inspiring women in semi-weekly podcasts, contests to share girlfriend stories and provides videos, shopping, reviews, blogs and more.


Additional Breast Cancer Awareness info: Pink Gifts for Girlfriends, More Pink Gifts for Girlfriends
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