What does BFF really mean, anyway? According to Urban Dictionary, a BFF is “An abbreviation mostly written on binders or notes by girls in grade school.” Thanks, Urban Dictionary. You’ve been extraordinarily helpful.
If you’ve kept up with me pretty much anywhere online, you’ll know I’m originally from North Carolina, but live in Minneapolis (Check out my post “Hotdish & Sweet Tea” to learn more about my life as a Minnesota transplant). Living 1,300 miles from home can be tough when the family and friends you grew up with are also just as far away. So, how do I stay sane? Much of it is thanks to my BFFs and our weekly BFF Night.
I met Matthew 5 years ago, Matty 4 years ago, then Coral 3 years ago, and from then also Crystina and others through Coral. Using the term “best friend” got complicated and awkward as we’ve all ended up spending so much time together, and are all close to each other in unique ways. So, we have a group of people we refer to as our BFFs to make sense of it all. We have honorary members outside of Minneapolis, in North Carolina, Texas, and Iowa. We even have a Twitter account used to spam all our phones at once, @EpicBFFs.
Every Wednesday, we have BFF Night. Almost always at my house, we commit ourselves to having a home-cooked meal and games together once a week. Sometimes it’s as simple as bratwurst and mashed potatoes. Other times, it might be as grand as chorizo-stuffed chicken breast with raspberry chipotle mole (a recipe I created and posted on AllRecipes.com that I’m quite proud of). But always, it’s a fun and happy time that we spend with each other, and for many of us, the highlight of our week.
Last December, it became incredibly clear how special my group of friends has become. We had three holiday-themed BFF Nights to cover all the religions represented in the group. We had traditional Chanukkah, Yule, and Christmas meals complete with traditional activities for each holiday. Two things really struck me about this. First, noticing the true diversity of the group, it’s amazing how we’ve all found each other and how well we get along and complement each other. Second, while all three of the holidays we celebrated were gift-giving holidays, we did not exchange gifts. Instead, we pooled the money we would have spent on each other and found ways to collectively use it for good. One of those things was buying gifts for needy families in Minnesota; we even got to shop for it all together.
Whether you have family and friends close to you or not, are you taking time to eat at home on a regular basis? If not, you should be. If you look, you can find a lot of articles with plenty of research showing the benefits of eating family meals at home. All of the BFFs have jobs and other commitments that keep us busy all week long. Eating together once a week keeps us from eating out while keeping us focused on relationships that matter. It’s also therapeutic for me to take raw ingredients and create something amazing, beautiful, and indulgent. I am incredibly blessed to be a part of this group of friends who always takes time for each other and helps each other every time it’s needed.
What’s your favorite meal to cook at home?