Ideas for Friends

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Inspire fellow friend-seekers with your story!

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Kathrine
Can we be friends iam new here too thought
Tuesday, 20 June 2017 08:33
Sarah
Hi I am Sarah i am new here and wanted to make new friends and be able to chat with them, call them, laugh with them...basically w... Read More
Saturday, 20 May 2017 19:53
Cinema Fan
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Saturday, 10 June 2017 10:13
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Plan a Grownup Birthday Party

 

A birthday party is the perfect excuse to invite friends over for a fun celebration and make the birthday man or lady feel extra special on their day, so don't miss out on this opportunity!

Whether you throw a party for yourself or for a dear friend, here are some ideas to make birthday celebrations special, even after the candles start crowding that cake!

 

Choose a Theme

All your party elements - food, decorations, activity - pull together in a delightful way when your party has some kind of underlying theme or "raison d'etre".

The theme can be all-out, like, "Hawaiian Luau", but it can also be just as effective to have a theme that is more subtle, like, "Classic Birthday Party with a Grownup Twist" (see below for ideas on this theme.)

 

Here are some more examples of easy theme ideas for adult birthday parties:

Pink

Fuchsia theme. Get napkins, balloons, and flowers in this color. Create a punch or signature cocktail to match. Make birthday cake, cupcakes or cookies with icing in the same color.  

Nature-Lover

Woodsy theme. Sprigs of wildflowers in mason jars. Those tree-stump cake stands. Chili bar with fixins'. Ask your guests to wear plaid.

 

 

 

 Fiesta Birthday

So much fun as an adult - hello big batch margaritas! 

Make margaritas, set up a taco bar, and make sure there's lots of guacamole.

Buy (or make!) a pinata and stuff it with candy. Throw some posters of Mexico up on the walls if it's cold or go out on the deck or yard if it's nice out. 

 

 

Set the Mood 

 

Your theme will inspire you with ideas. Decorations, music, and even real invitations can set the tone for your wonderful party.

Putting up decorations is of course completely trivial and not necessary.  THAT'S WHY IT'S SO MUCH FUN! ;)

Birthdays are special occasions, even if you are throwing the party for yourself, show yourself and your guests some love with fresh flowers on the table, or balloons up on the wall!

 

 

Plan your Menu

A theme can help you pull a menu together. 

Depending on the nature of your party, it's nice to have:

  • A signature drink
  • Appetizers
  • A main course 
  • A Birthday cake

Especially a birthday cake. It's so essential. Don't forget the candles!

If your guests offer to bring something, let them! Ask them to bring an appetizer, a side, or even the cake, and let them know about your theme. There, one less thing for you to do!

 

 

Add special touches

Even if you're throwing your own birthday party, elevate it from regular get-together level to "special birthday party level" by throwing in a special touch.

It's not very often as an adult that you get an opportunity to "play", or to be creative for no reason beyond having a few laughs. Take your birthday party as an opportunity to do something fun or creative.

Make a craft, do a painting, or set up a photo booth - because why should kids have all the fun?

 

Some of our Grownup Birthday Party Ideas:

 

Classic Birthday Party with a Grownup Twist

Remember the standard birthday party when you were a kid? So simple and fun!

Balloons, streamers, pizza, pop, and that standard birthday cake.

Take this this idea and elevate it to adult levels with minor changes:

Keep the balloons and streamers. Set up an Italian soda bar or a signature drink in place of the pop. 

Like this Birthday Cake Martini:

 

Keep the pizza on the menu - but make homemade pizzas with gourmet toppings.  Or fire up your own pizza oven!

Get the prettiest, tastiest birthday cake that you can find homemade or from a special bakery, and remember the candles.

 

Send your friends home with grown-up goody bags and good memories, old and new!

 

Paint Night

You can host your very own paint night at home!

For this party, nurture creativity and bright colors in your party accents. 

Grab small canvases and paints for cheap from the dollar store or that big-box store that has everything - get kids paints, they're cheap and they'll do the job, after all it's mostly for fun!

Set up YouTube on your TV in front of the painting station - you can watch full episodes of the ultimate paint-along guide, Bob Ross, and try out this drinking game...

Set your table with big blossoms for that colorful feeling, or set the whole theme based on the painting you do. (Mountain cabin in the woods?)

 

Have you ever celebrated with a unique birthday party?

 

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Chloe
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Spend Valentine's Day with Friends! Some Ideas..

Spend Valentine's Day with Friends! Some Ideas..

Ways to Spend Valentine's Day with Friends

Valentine's Day might make you think of chocolate, flowers, cards and dinners, but this holiday can also be a really wonderful excuse to have fun and get together with your friends!

Here are some things you can do with your friends this Valentine's Day.  What did we miss? Chime in below!

Get Crafty!

Get together and make some of those beautiful diy Valentine's decorations you always see on Pinterest.
It's fun to get creative with friends, and you can pull out your creations year after year and remember your lovely time with your friends.

Bake up a Storm

Join forces and make a giant batch of gorgeous sugar cookies with a friend - give extra cookies to your sweetie or surprise a neighbor or friend in need with a batch.

Coffee + Desserts

We can be so busy during the day.  But it's easy to make time to get together for coffee and dessert after dinner. Go out to a restaurant with your gals or do coffee and homemade dessert in the living room.
So simple, there's lots of time to chat and catch up.

Spa Time

Treat yourself without the sweets! White bathrobes. Face masks. Steam. A Turkish hammam is ideal, but a diy day with homemade concoctions is also fun. Gather your pals and unwind with spa time.

Go Dancing

You don't have a date night planned, but you still want to wear something red and dress up? Go dancing! Lots of clubs have Valentine's Day specials, it's a great way to have fun and hit the town with your friends on Valentine's Day.

Take a Group Class at the Gym

Zumba or yoga, whatever new class you might want to try - drag a friend and have twice the fun! Perfect before that tasty discount chocolate!

 

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Simple Ways to be a Good Neighbour

Simple Ways to be a Good Neighbour

 Simple Ways to be a Good Neighbour

There is a known rule in the community-building playbook, "Start with Petunias".

If you want to transform your neighbourhood into the kind of thriving, safe, attractive, and pleasant community, it's best to start small. Plant flowers. 
Here are seven more small, simple things you can do to make your neighbourhood amazing:

 

1. Spend More Time in Your Front Yard or Front Step  

Jay Walljasper, in his book, "The Great Neighborhood Book", describes sitting on your front stoop a

"great city pastime that has become endangered", and notes that some historians feel that when we spend more time in the backyards, instead of our front yards, we are decreasing our connection with our neighbours. 

What are some ways to pass time in our front porch or steps? Watch the world go by, read the newspaper, have a beer, and wave at your neighbours! 

 

2. Go for Neighbourhood Walks  

You know that quote about how showing up is 99% of the effort you must put in? By strolling your neighbourhood, you are showing up, and that does a lot.

Not only is this good for your health, but it's good for the health of your community. When a community has locals taking regular walks, it is like having a neighbourhood patrol. An active and engaged neighbourhood is a neighbourhood that is monitored and safe - criminals usually prefer to go somewhere more quiet and deserted looking. 

 

3. Welcome New Neighbours

An old-fashioned tradition worth reviving! Drop by with a basket of muffins and introduce yourself.  Share helpful information about the neighbourhood. 

 

4. Celebrate Holidays and Seasons  

It's easy to get caught up in the chaos of everyday life, but the holidays and seasons are a good chance to be thoughtful and to brighten your community. 

The Great Neighborhood Book has many suggestions for ways to embrace the holidays and seasons; 

  • Swap seedlings from your garden in the spring
  • Organize a special trick-or-treat experience for the children at Halloween
  • Coordinate Christmas decorations around the block with your neighbours - make ice lanterns, or decorate all the lamp posts.  
  • Organize a caroling night complete with cookies and cocoa after.
  • Make note of #5! 

 

5. Give Small Gifts  

Gifts for neighbours do not have to be elaborate but they are so rewarding to give! 

A basket of extra tomatoes from your garden will surely be appreciated by your neighbour who doesn't keep a garden.  Use your big snowblower to do your elderly neighbour's walkway. A box of homemade cookies. An offer to collect mail while your neighbour is on vacation.

Everyone has a gift to give. 

Be thoughtful with small gifts, and don't be surprised when you start receiving surprises and gifts too!

 

6. Take Your Kids to the Park  

It's another tried and true, old-fashioned action. Why mess with success? 

And if your neighbourhood park isn't that great... developing one might be a great project to pull together the community! 

 

7. Make it Great for Pets

Some green space, a safe walking path, a community water dish - according to Walljasper, a dog-friendly neighbourhood will have dog-walkers out at all hours. This is a wonderful way to prevent crime and meet new people.

 

 

 

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Making New Friends at Alcoholics Anonymous

I stopped hanging out with my main group of friends because the guitarist of the rock band I carried equipment for was extremely condescending towards me and always wanted me to contribute money towards him buying drugs. These were toxic friends, and they saw nothing wrong with putting me down either. They also drank and smoked cigarettes and used drugs, when I was trying to quit all of these things. So I stopped hanging out with them. But almost all my friends were in this rock band and the people who worked for it.

Suddenly I had nobody to hang out with.  But it got worse.

After leaving this group, I got drunk at another friend’s house, and by the end of the night my insatiable thirst for beer resulted in me grabbing the last beer his grandfather ever brewed, while he wasn’t looking, and drinking it. My  friend found out and punched me in the face and I was banned from his house. It was at this point I realized that I needed to go to AA. I needed to become a better person and surround myself with people who could bring out the best in me.
I had gone before when I was younger, but it was because I had to for probation, and I would just wait for the meetings to be over so that I could get my sheet signed.  This time I wanted to do it right.

I was prejudiced against members of the military when I began AA, but the nicest person I met there was a Gulf War veteran with PTSD named Jeremy. He was very empathetic with everyone at the tables. I thought, “Wow, this guy actually cares when bad things happen to people he doesn’t know!” At AA I have started to care more about the joys and problems of both my new AA friends and even strangers, and to feel their emotions with them. I am also learning that a 22-year-old like myself can be friends with much older people. There are people of all ages at AA groups.

In one meeting, I was sitting with some guys my age and one older guy.  I found myself  opening up about how my dad had a seizure from getting a cerebral edema after hitting his head too many times when he was drunk. I told them, “It was not long after he got the surgery to drain it before he started drinking again and I never want to be that stupid.”

They agreed that it was pretty stupid and reassured me that I didn’t have to be like that. After the meeting a young man named Colin said, “We’re all about the same age. If you ever need anyone to hang out with, you can chill with us.” He gave me his number and the older guy told me about the three-quarters house they lived at (a place with strict rules where recovering drug addicts live) and said I should check it out. These people that I had just met suggested I come live with them! I am fortunate enough that I am sober to the point where I don’t need to live in a place like that, but it was touching to be invited.

The club where I go to most of my meetings is located in a strip mall; ironically it is right next to a liquor store. Inside there are tables topped with hard white plastic surrounded by folding chairs. In the back there is free coffee and tea set out along with tall stacks of Styrofoam cups. On the walls there are there picture frames on the wall with the 12 Steps and 12 Traditions in them and sayings such as, “Let Go and Let God”, “Willingness is the Key”, and “One Day at a Time”. There is also a print of the classic AA painting of two members of AA talking to an alcoholic on a wall.  To me this highlights the key success behind the organization – understanding people helping each other to become better.

The atmosphere at the club was so friendly and supportive. The 12th step is to help other alcoholics achieve sobriety, so a major goal of members of AA is to help you. There is something called “The Fellowship” at AA, which means a friendly and supportive community of people with the common goal of staying sober. It is very easy to make new friends at AA because when you first get there a card is handed around and everyone puts their name and number on it so you can call people if you need help or even a friend. I realized that people often lose friends when they stop drinking and doing drugs, because they can’t afford to be around people doing things like that, or because their friends were shallow and won’t want to spend time with them unless they’re getting high or drunk. Members of AA are very willing to spend time with you outside of the club because they understand that newly sober people need sober friends.

Before and after meetings everyone hangs out in the court to talk or smoke cigarettes. I don’t smoke anymore but this is where I really got to know a lot of people. One of my best friends at AA is John, a tall skinny 27 -year-old with brown hair and ears that stick out really far.

I think one reason why it was easier to make friends in AA is that the 4th step in AA is taking moral inventory, assessing when you were good or evil. During meetings people often confess to doing bad things in the past, and judging others is called “taking someone else’s inventory” and is considered useless and self-defeating. Anyone can be themselves in AA and will be shown compassion, in fact honesty is strongly encouraged as opposed to hiding faults like one would need to elsewhere.

I don’t have a car because for several years I had terrible priorities. At AA people often have lost the privilege to drive because of DUIs, so people often give each other rides. I have made many friends by being driven home by people. One of them, Joe, became my sponsor. Joe drives John and me home after the 10:00 P.M. meetings sometimes, which are my favorite meetings because that’s the one most of my friends go to.  Joe is really funny and cool and I count on him for advice on important issues.

I got a job because of AA and I also made two new friends, my bosses Bill and Charlie. I mentioned that I didn’t have a job at one point when we were standing around in the court where people smoke. A 50-year-old named Charlie told me that he was a roofer. He offered to train me to be a roofer and the first day he came and picked me up he talked for a while and I learned a lot about him. He used to be a millionaire because he ran a huge roofing company. Then he lost everything because of the 2008 Wall Street crash and the Great Recession. It turns out the road I live on is named after his family! While I was working with him I met one of his business partners who also goes to AA, a 69-year-old named Bill. Bill and I have become very good friends and he says that one of his favorite times of day is when he is driving around with me to go to various jobs and pick things up from Home Depot. We talk a lot and can relate to each other very well even though there is a 47-year age gap.

I am extremely glad that I started going to AA on regular basis. I have made about ten new friends in just four months and I am making more all the time. Every day I can go hang out with people, there are several meetings a day so that I never have to be alone. In these past four months I’ve gotten a job and a girlfriend, two things I haven’t had in a long time. Ditching my toxic friends and lifestyle and deciding to make new friends and a healthier lifestyle by going to Alcoholics Anonymous was one of the best choices I’ve ever made.*

 

 

 -Submitted by Michael Ericson

*NB. All names have been changed in this story.

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Australia to NYC: Making new friends as an adult

Australia to NYC: Making new friends as an adult

Recently, I moved from Australia to New York City. It was, and still is, incredibly scary and challenging. While I knew a handful of people, they were scattered between Manhattan and New Jersey, and most were friends of a friend- not my own connections. I didn’t want to pity-invited along to any event. In a city  of 8 million people, it doesn’t seem like it would be difficult to find, and make, friends but it was, and it wasn’t long before I started to feel a little bit isolated and consider a life where my only friends in the city would be the raccoons in Central Park.

Raccoons, and possible rabies, aside, I knew I had to do something about this feeling of disconnect from society, or I’d end up a lonely spinster in arguably one of the greatest cities in the world, known for its vivid social scene.

 

So I got to work. Thinking about how I’d made friends in my previous, Australian life, it dawned on me that not all of my best and closest friendships had been formed at school or work places- the two places I assumed were the time-honoured friend-making scenes. So, I put together a list of ways  to meet great friends in my new city.  Here are some things that worked for me:

 

Meetups

I discovered that going along to meet ups for something you’re interested in or passionate about is a great way to meet people. Not only are you mingling with other living, breathing hominids, but you’re also meeting people with similar interests to you, and because you have an inbuilt convo starter, you don’t need to make small talk about the local sports team or the unseasonable weather we’ve been having lately.

 

Book or Movie Review Clubs

Similar to meet ups, a book club or movie review club is a great way to meet people because you’re forced to not be a wallflower and to participate in the conversation. Maybe you’ll find your next bestie after you both give 50 Shades of Grey withering reviews, and bond over your shared highlighting of all the naughty parts in the book- (the only parts worth reading). The other benefit to making friends at things like this is that you’re still keeping up with your passions and hobbies. You get to keep your interests and make friends.

 

Helping people

Take a look around you, is someone struggling with a map or a Metrocard? Give them a hand. It won’t take much time and maybe you’re catching the same train, so you’ll have some time to chat.

This is exactly how I made a friend from Boston, after witnessing him struggle with the ticketing machine and offering my assistance.

Even if you don’t make a lifelong friend, you’ll feel good for helping someone and you’ll become well-practiced at approaching people, and with this comes confidence- good practice for more new friends!

 

Co-working spaces

I use a co-working space and I witnessed the blossoming of a new friendship right before my eyes recently.

Dan was casually working away at a desk in an open spaced area shared with others when Al, the eagle eye, spots some kind of gaming-card deck, the name of which is unknown to me, and asks Dan if he can “check out his deck”. Dan responds in the positive and the next twenty minutes they were dedicated to talking about the game, the styles they played and where. At the end of this brief encounter, the pair were Facebook friends and making plans to hook up to play said game in the future. While I wouldn’t advocate laying out a token of all the things you’re interested in like a weird, religious shrine for others to see and remark upon, open planned spaces encourage and foster these kinds of interactions and I have found them to be a good way to meet people.

 

Internet dating

I once met a group of guys out one night on the roller derby scene and as the night progressed, my best friend and I hung out with them more and more and we bonded quite quickly. Drunkenly insisting one of our new found pals couldn’t possibly make the late night commute to his home- in another town an hour away, we forced the poor guy to spend the night on our too-small couch. Waking in the morning to see he’d since left but had neatly folded his sheets and blankets, placing them on said couch, and hadn’t made off with our TV, made us think he was an ok guy. Later on in the day, I’m flicking through potential suitors online and see someone who looks awfully familiar to our new found friend- we were a match! We thought this pretty funny and laughed ourselves silly and then we forced him to move in with us and we’ve been great friends ever since. While we were never romantic, as the site had intended in pairing us up, that person is now one of my best friends, and I’ve met other friends through him. So while internet dating can be , it’s not entirely unreasonable to use it to make friends.

A tip - while you may be tempted to invent romantic scenarios with this new person, or people, in your head- don’t. It isn’t that actively dating someone is a bad way of meeting friends, but you want your own friends and not temporary friends you’ll have to give up if the relationship doesn’t last. So you may have to sacrifice one hottie, and the relationship potential they have, in order to make, and remain, friends. .

 

So while it may seem daunting and an impossible task, it isn’t always doom and gloom when it comes to making friends as an adult. I hope this list has inspired you to look outside the box when it comes to making new friends. What did you think of this list? Have you tried any of these things? 

 

About Jamie-lee Owen

Jamie-lee Owen is a writer and raccoon lover. More of her work can be found at jleeowen.com

 

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Lillyf
Hi ?
Monday, 06 March 2017 21:49
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Yearly social calendar for couples

Yearly social calendar for couples

Do you know that problem you have as a couple where you just can't find something to watch on Netflix?

Wait a minute!  Maybe it's time to call up some mutual friends and go out! (With any luck, your friends will have some suggestions for new shows to watch..)

If you're wondering what a healthy, active and fun-filled social life might look like for a married couple, here is an infographic that can help you plan your free time and social life as a couple. 

What do you think of this schedule? Is it realistic for you?  Chime in below!

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How to Host a Raw, Vegan Thanksgiving for Friends

How to Host a Raw, Vegan Thanksgiving for Friends

It's a Thanksgiving dinner party for friends that won't leave you feeling stuffed - so pour the extra (organic) wine and enjoy a true culinary adventure this Thanksgiving with your friends!

This is the raw menu from the cookbook, "Living Raw Food," by Chef Sarma Melngailis.  This Thanksgiving menu was also served at Sarma's raw restaurant in New York City for Thanksgiving. 

Note that you need a dehydrator to make the recipes. 

 

The Menu

Serves 10 - 12 guests

Marinated mushrooms (can use dark and light for two-toned "meat")

Mashed root vegetables

Stuffing

Cranberry sauce

Brussels sprouts

Organic red and white wine

Vegan pumpkin pie with raw vegan whipped cream

 

 

The Scene

Think natural as a decor theme. Set your table with seasonal produce and simple candles in mismatched-sized jars. Decorate your house with a generous number of wildflower bouquets, and be sure to mix grasses, cat tails, and berry branches into the bouquets if you can. With all the time saved on cooking this meal, you will extra time to go for a nature walk and gather these supplies!  (Or your nearest farmer's market.)

 

The Recipes

From the cookbook, "Living Raw Food."

You can make all of these recipes one day ahead, and just warm everything up in your dehyrdrator 30-40 minutes before serving!

 

Marinated Mushrooms

1 medium onion, diced

2 cups olive oil

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons minced rosemary

3 tablespoons each, minced sage and thyme

1 tablespoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

10-12 large portobello mushroom caps, cleaned and sliced thick on the diagonal

4-5 large king oyster mushroom stems, sliced thick on the diagonal (use extra portobellos if unavailable)

Combine all ingredients except mushrooms in a large bowl, whisk til well mixed.

Add mushrooms to the marinade and coat well. Set aside to marinate for 10-15 minutes. 

Place mushrooms on a teflex-lined sheet in your dehyrdator and allow to dehyrdate until the mushrooms become tender and look roasted, 1-2 hours. 

 

Mashed Root Vegetables

4 cups pine nuts, soaked 1 hour or more

2 cups water

4 cups celeriac, peeled and chopped

5 cups jicama, peeled and chopped

1.5 cups parsnips, peeled and chopped

2 cups olive oil

4 tablespoons nutritional yeast

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons truffle oil

1 cup scallions, white and pale green parts, chopped

20 turns fresh ground pepper

2 teaspoons sea salt

 

In a blender, puree the pine nuts and water until smooth and creamy.

Place the puree in a large bowl, add all the remaining ingredients, mix well.

Pour 1 cup pine nut cream and 3-4 cups of the vegetable mixture into a food processor and process until smooth. Set aside in a large bowl and continue with the remaining pine nut cream and vegetable mixture. 

Stir the mixture well and let sit for at least 2 hours to allow any liquid that forms to pool on top.

Pour off the liquid. If it's still a bit runny, place the mixture on a clean kitchen towel and gently squeeze out any excess liquid. Transfer to a bowl and season with additional sea salt to taste.

 

Brussels Sprouts

1/4 cup pistachio oil

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup maple syrup

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon fresh ground pink pepper

5 cups Brussels sprouts

In a large bowl, whisk together the oils, maple syrup, salt and pepper.

Remove discolored outer leaves from the Brussels sprouts, and cut off the hard stems. 

Some leaves will separate from the core. Continue cutting away the hard interior until the sprout is entirely separated into individual leaves, placing the leaves into the oil mixture as you separate them. Repeat with the remaining Brussels sprouts

Toss the sprouts mixture and marinate for at least 30 minutes. Alternatively, for more tender Brussels sprouts, place them on a Teflex-lined tray in the dehyrdator for up to 45 minutes. You can also do this just before serving so that they will be warm.

 

 Stuffing

4 cups chopped cauliflower florets

2 tablespoons olive oil

sea salt

8 cups ground pecans, ground to a crumbly texture in the food processor

2 cups carrots, peeled and diced small

2 cups celery, diced small

2 cup onion, peeled, diced small

1 teaspoon truffle oil

2 tablespoons rosemary, minced

3 tablespoons thyme, minced

freshly ground black pepper

Place cauliflower in food processor and process until it has a texture similar to sesame seeds, with no large pieces.

Add the olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and process just until mixed.

Spread the mixture on a Teflex sheet and dehyrdate for 1 hour.

Meanwhile, mix the other ingredients in a large bowl.

Remove the cauliflower from the dehydrator, mix with the remaining ingredients, and season to taste with salt and pepper. 

 

Cranberry Sauce

8 ounces fresh cranberries

1/2 cup filtered water

1/4 agave nectar

2 strips orange zest

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

about 2 cups Irish Moss, soaked in hot water for 10 minutes or more, drained

In a high-speed blender, puree all the ingredients except for the Irish moss until very smooth. 

Add the Irish moss to the blender and mix at high speed until the mixture heats up to about 115 degrees Farenheit.

Pour the mixture into a bowl or shallow pan and refrigerate at least 2 hours.

 

 

 

Dessert:

Raw, Vegan Pumpkin Pie - Recipe available at the Real Foods Witch blog.

Top it with raw whipping cream: 

Refrigerate full-fat coconut milk until chilled, then whip until fluffy! Add a bit of your favourite sweetner and vanilla if you'd like. 

Mmmm!

 

 

Recent Comments
bff_teen
you actually are showing mostly salad variety of veges i can make a better menu ... i can use oats and other easily available mate... Read More
Wednesday, 02 November 2016 18:11
Amazing Joji
How do you expect to gather enough vegans for a vegan-only party?!!???!!!
Tuesday, 18 July 2017 21:44
TJ
Good question! It's hard enough finding vegans in the real world that even live close enough ??
Monday, 24 July 2017 23:54
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Is Loneliness a Rising Epidemic in Young People?

Is Loneliness a Rising Epidemic in Young People?

Studies suggest people in their 20s and 30s are lonelier than seniors

In 2010, The Mental Health Foundation in the U.K. found that loneliness was a bigger problem among the young than the old.  The 18-34 year-olds in an extensive study were more likely to feel lonely often, to worry about feeling alone and to feel depressed because of loneliness than those over 55.

Lynn Renwick would agree. Renwick runs a drop-in to help lonely youth in Newcastle, England in the summer, “Loneliness is not just an issue for older people in our community and many young people come to us for help to socialise with other young people." She said in an article for NE Connected online. 

So, if young people are lonelier right now than old people - how did this happen?

A look at some possible causes:

Social media makes us insecure

We're hearing about this all the time now. Numerous studies showing that rather than bring us closer, social media is making us feel more lonely and more insecure. 

A recent study shows that using Facebook makes young people feel bad. 

“On the surface, Facebook provides an invaluable resource for fulfilling the basic human need for social connection,” says U-M social psychologist Ethan Kross, lead author of the article and a faculty associate at the U-M Institute for Social Research (ISR).“But rather than enhance well-being, we found that Facebook use predicts the opposite result."

To be fair, Facebook may have these effects on young people, but it can have the opposite effect on the old!

In a study, seniors in residential care were trained to use social media and started using it to keep up with family, resulting in a decrease in their loneliness.

One lesson from this might be that Facebook will not reduce our loneliness if we use it to replace face-to-face time with our friends. According to the Lonely Society study in the U.K., spending time in-person, as in face-to-face with friends, produces the hormon oxytocin, which might be good for your heart as well as your feelings of well-being.

 

Young people are obsessed with being productive, even at the expense of time with friends

A recent study undertaken by the Mental Health Foundation in the U.K. found that for some young people, investing time in social activities is seen as less important than work.

People today feel pressure to be ‘productive’ and busy, and as a consequence neglect relationships with friends and family.

"Individuals pursuing aspirations in a market-driven world may be doing so at their own expense, and neglecting the basic human need to connect with others," says the Mental Health Foundation. 

There is a danger in this; making work more important for your time than friends and family is not a good choice for your health, your happiness, or even your lifespan! 

 

 

 

Why we need to prioritize friendships at every stage of our lives:

 

Spending time with friends will make you live longer

Scientists found that the loneliest were nearly twice as likely to die during their six-year study than the least lonely in a recent study. Compared with the average person in the study, those who reported being lonely had a 14% greater risk of dying. So loneliness has about twice the impact on an early death as obesity, or smoking 15 cigarettes a day!

Chicago psychologist John Cacioppo has been studying loneliness for decades, and he puts it bluntly, 

"No matter what social species you’re talking about, all the way down to fruit flies, if you isolate them they die earlier.”

 

Spending time with friends will make you healthier

More studies are coming out all the time showing how loneliness leads to high blood pressure, a weakened immune system, depression, heart attack and strokes.

In fact, loneliness and feelings of rejection activates the same parts of the brain as physical pain!

But those who spend time with good friends drink less alcohol, have healthier diets, and exercise more than lonely people, according to research.

 

Spending time with friends will make you happier

In one study, 42% of women polled felt depressed because of their loneliness. 

People who spend more time with friends find less fault with themselves and with those around them. They are significantly less likely to be depressed. In short, people who spend time with their friends are happier. 

 

Spending time with friends will save you money

One study showed that feeling lonely can make you spend more money, and be more frivolous in your spending. 

Maybe that's why it's called retail therapy?

On the flip side, spending time with friends is often rewarding but low cost - sure, you might go for dinner or drinks, but you can also just hang out, go to the park, go to the beach, or just have coffee - actually for more ideas, see this blog post. 

While there are some services and charities that are aimed to reduce loneliness in seniors, there are not currently such services existing for the younger generations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ninsiima Innocent
Indeed this is very true
Thursday, 04 May 2017 16:03
Ije4lyf
true facts
Thursday, 25 May 2017 01:09
Yousss🌼
True.
Saturday, 01 July 2017 21:31
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Friends: The Prescription for a Long, Healthy Life

More and more statistics are showing that spending more time with friends will not only make you happier, but healthier as well. 

As more research is emerging, it is becoming apparent that friendship can be one of the best things for your health. 

Here are some interesting stats:

Spending time with friends was shown to reduce the risk of heart disease by 29 %.

Spending time with friends has been shown to reduce the risk of stroke by 32 %. 

 

More stats to come!

 

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Kota
I need friends Asap
Wednesday, 21 June 2017 10:08
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Why people are going online to make friends

Why people are going online to make friends

 

Why are people using the Internet to make friends?

  

"It's not as easy to make and keep friendships today as it used to be," says FriendMatch founder Katie Hartle, "people are looking to the Internet to solve this problem."

 

In the UK, a "National Campaign to End Loneliness" was created.

In the USA and Canada, the rising epidemic of loneliness is increasingly being covered in the news.

The impact of loneliness is more than just a social problem:

 Loneliness is creating an impact on the heatlh of men and women of all ages.

  Articles and studies are showing that lonely people have higher rates of inflammation and weakened immune systems, and that loneliness can increase the risk of premature death by 30%!

 In the United Kingdom, Loneliness is Worse Among Young People

 In 2010 the Mental Health Foundation found loneliness to be a worse among young people than the elderly. The 18 to 34-year-olds surveyed were more likely to feel lonely often, to worry about feeling alone and to feel depressed because of loneliness than the over-55s!

 

Coffees, book clubs, and dinner parties; interests of friend-seekers

In a study of 7,000 FriendMatch.com members, newly released data shows that members are using FriendMatch to make friends because they want to have more experiences: 

The main activities members were interested in:

54% of FriendMatch members analyzed would love to meet for coffee with their new friends.

23% of members are interested in joining a book club or wine club.

32% of FriendMatch members would like to have a dinner party with their new friends.

 

Who is making friends online:

43% of FriendMatch members are women between the ages of 18 - 29.

At the time of the study, Women made up approx. 63% of all FriendMatch members.

 Friend-seekers come from around the world, but the top three countries for members on FriendMatch, in order are:

1. United States  2. Canada  3. United Kingdom.

 

About FriendMatch.com

FriendMatch is an online service to help you meet real new friends, from your neighborhood or from around the world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Gil
Great page
Wednesday, 26 July 2017 00:28
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Tips and Ideas for an Amazing Holiday Vacation with Friends

Tips and Ideas for an Amazing Holiday Vacation with Friends

Group trip? Consider renting an amazing house

There are some beautiful dream homes on Airbnb, and through other services such as Luxuryretreats.com, and dreamexoticrentals.com, you can rent an amazing mansion in a beautiful travel destination.

Once you split the cost among a group of friends, it can be very comparable to staying in a hotel or all-inclusive resort - sometimes it's even a much better value.

In some rentals, like this house rental that sleeps 24 and is priced between $1,500 - $5,940 per night, there is even a private chef included!

 

See the rest of this listing here: http://www.luxuryretreats.com/vacation-rentals/mexico/riviera-maya/soliman-bay/hacienda-caracol-111850 

 

Remember to take some good group photos

You don't have to do this for every meal, activity, or even day, but try to put aside a bit of time to take a couple of group photos, with everyone in the shot!  You will treasure these photos for years after your vacation. 

Or, just post them on Instagram, whatever makes you happy.

 

 

 

Don't do Everything Together on vacation

Whether you are a group of friends or a group of couple friends, it's important to put aside time for people to do their own activities and to get some time for themselves. 

This gives everyone a chance to rest for the next adventure!  Some friends might prefer to take a nap in the day, while another friend might prefer time to do a workout.

Couples who are vacationing with friends might appreciate a romantic dinner or excursion on their own once or twice.  If you mix up group and solo activities, everyone can spend their vacation doing what they love.

 Plus, if you are all together every second, you might run out of new things to talk about!  

As a recent article in Forbes online put it, "Not every activity needs to be a group activity." 

 

If you don't want to do an activity on vacation - skip it!

This is a bit like the above point, but it's important for group harmony.

If you would rather sit by the pool than go to an art gallery, let your friends know you'll catch up at dinner. You'll be better company if you are happy and relaxed than dragging your feet!

 

 

 

 

Have a planning meeting before the trip

Planning a trip is part of the fun! Meet before the trip to talk broadly about what kind of vacation everyone is hoping for. This will really help to make sure that everyone can get the kind of vacation that they want.

Maybe one friend wants to spend a good chunk of time sitting on the beach, while another wants to explore and sight-see. Talking about it ahead means no surprises while travelling!

You can also make the larger decisions about the trip while together in person to discuss it, ideally.

 

Talk about money before the trip

Because who wants to talk about money while on vacation? For ultimate harmony, Sonia Prades in an interview for Hindustan Times suggests that you work out a fair split of the major expenses; accommodation, transportation, and groceries.  

Other expenses, such as entertainment, drinks, and restaurants, should be individual expenses, not group expenses.

Keeping friends is easy when you don't split every cheque!

 

One more thing about Money and other details ..

Don't worry, be happy!  Tell yourself that anytime you feel a bit annoyed that one friend seems to tip less, or eat more, or whatever annoying quirks..  Just remind yourself that you're on vacation, so you will not let little things bug you!

If you don't like a behaviour of one of your travel companions, just be the bigger person and lead by positive example!

Be the friend you want to have - and that includes extra patience sometimes!

 

 

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How to Host a Vegan Tapas Dinner Party

How to Host a Vegan Tapas Dinner Party

 

Host a Vegan Tapas Dinner

A Party Planning Guide

Having a vegan tapas party can be tasty, healthy, and even fun and exciting, even for your non-vegan friends.  

It's fun to try new things at a dinner party, and making it a tapas party will mean lots of fun little bites of vegan delights to try, it's a great way to try many types of different vegan flavours at once!

All my recipes are at the bottom of this post. I'd love to hear about your experience if you give this dinner party a try!

 

Setting the Scene

Tapas-style means sharing many small dishes, perfect for a dinner party because it encourages lots of sharing and interaction.

To set the table for this style of eating, put down side plates instead of full dinner plates at each place setting. You will need the extra room at the table for many platters!

Because you will want to bring many different dishes to the table at once, use the largest table you have, and keep the decorations simple - I used candles in jars and a tablecloth. 

 

The Menu

Easy Sangria 

Salted radishes, mixed olive platters

Rosemary and white bean dip with fresh bread

Cucumber hummus cups topped with olive tapenade

Rice paper wraps with dipping sauce

Polenta bruschetta bites

Mint chocolate "nice cream"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Recipes

Easy Sangria 

2 bottles vegan red wine + 2 Litres Ginger Ale + mixed frozen fruit + sliced lemon/limes

Mix early in the day to allow the flavours to develop - and so a drink is ready as soon as your guests walk in the door! 

Salted radishes, mixed olive platters

Coconut-crusted tofu bites + Mango Dipping Sauce

Drain 2 packages of firm tofu, press onto paper towels to release extra moisture. Cut into medium-large cubes. 

Set up 3 bowls:

Bowl 1: 1/4 cup flour + 1 tsp each salt, garlic powder
Bowl 2: 1/2 cup almond milk + 1 tbsp flour 
Bowl 3: 1 cup shredded coconut

Heat coconut oil in a medium/high frying pan. Dip each tofu cube in bowl 1, then bowl 2, then bowl 3, then put in heated oil on frying pan. Pat extra coconut flakes if needed. Pan fry on all sides until golden. Work in batches. 

Remove from frying pan and let cool on paper towel to soak extra oil. 

Mango dipping Sauce: In food processor/blender combine: 2 cups peeled cubed mango (cheat: use frozen!) + 2 tbsp agave syrup + 1 tsp lime juice + 2 tbsp coconut milk + 1/2 tsp salt + 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes. 

Rosemary and white bean dip with fresh bread

1 - 14 oz can white beans + 1 clove of garlic or 1 tsp garlic powder + 1.5 tablespoons olive oil + fresh ground salt and pepper + squeeze of lemon juice

Blend all ingredients in a food processor. Make this one the day before if you want! Serve with fresh bread, or whatever form of carbs you prefer.

Cucumber hummus cups topped with olive tapenade

To Make the hummus: Mix 1 - 14 oz can chickpeas (organic is best!) + 1 tbsp lemon juice +  salt + pepper + 1 tbsp tahini paste + 3 garlic cloves (or less, or more, depending how much you like garlic).  Blend it all together in a food processor. The hummus can be made the day before the party.

To assemble the hummus cups: Slice cucumbers into 1-2 inch rounds. Scoop out a bowl into the top of each round. Fill with hummus. Top with olive tapenade. (Olive tapenade = Get from the deli to save time!)

Rice paper wraps with dipping sauce

To make the rice wraps: Chop up any combination of veggies you'd like into thin strips. Fresh herbs are great too. Chop first then line them up for easy assembly. Some suggested fillings: bean sprouts, alfalfa sprouts, thin strips of carrots, strips of fresh basil or cilantro, thin strips of bell peppers, lettuce. Anything really!

The rice wraps (which you bought at the store), will have directions on them - follow those! Then fill and wrap them.

To make the dipping sauce: Pull out your blender/food processor again! Blend together the following ingredients: 1" piece of fresh ginger, sliced thin + 1 small clove garlic + 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter + 2 tbsp soy sauce + 1 packed tsp brown sugar + pinch crushed red pepper flakes.  

Thin it out as much as needed with water to make it blend - adding a little water at a time until you get the right consistency. Another thing you can make the day before! (Put in fridge and bring to room temperature to serve.)

Polenta bruschetta bites

Prepared polenta roll (in the refrigerator section of store) - slice into 12 even rounds, then fry in olive oil til crispy, flipping once or twice. 

Arrange on a cookie sheet. Top with diced tomatoes, torn fresh basil, and a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Bake in 375 oven for about 10 minutes. 

Mint chocolate "nice cream"

This recipe is delicious, and it's from a blog called "Natural Noshing," visit this blog here 

Ingredients: 1 can full fat coconut milk + 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk + 2 tsp vanilla + few drops peppermint extract (about 1/4 tsp) + 3 tbsp agave + small handful of fresh spinach + pinch sea salt + handful vegan mini chocolate chips

Blend everything but the chocolate chips in the blender, then chill in the fridge until the party. When ready to make dessert, churn in the ice cream maker with the chocolate chips. This step takes about 15 - 20 minutes, depending on the ice cream maker. 

 

 

 

 

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fras
Wow super post...
Thursday, 24 November 2016 09:44
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Cereal Breakfast Shooters Recipe

Cereal Breakfast Shooters Recipe

These fun breakfast-themed shooters are meant to be shared with friends!

If you are looking for a shot that you can take in the morning, these cereal-inspired Rumchata shots are just the thing!

Apparently, people started mixing these up when they noticed that Rumchata liqueur tastes a bit like leftover cereal milk.

 

Honey Nut Cheerios Inspired breakfast shot recipe:

Mix together equal parts of Rumchata liqueur and honey whiskey.  Shake over ice and pour into shot glasses. 

Garnish with cereal.

 

Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal inspired breakfast shot

Mix equal parts of Rumchata liqueur and cinnamon whiskey.

Garnish with cereal.

 

Fruit Loops Inspired Shots

Mix 2 parts Rumchata Liqueur with 1 part "Loopy" flavoured vodka (from 3 Olives Vodka brand - it's a fruit loop flavour!)

Add a splash of Blue Curacao.

Shake over ice and serve garnished with cereal.

 

Lucky Charms Inspired Breakfast Shots

Mix 2 parts Rumchata with 1 part strawberry vodka, 1 part marshmallow vodka. 

Garnish with cereal and micro marshmallows!

 

So tasty - and Instagram-worthy -  Enjoy!

 

 

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Clothing Swap Party Plan + Punch Recipe

Clothing Swap Party Plan + Punch Recipe

Here is a perfect activity for today's budget-minded world: host a clothing swap party with your friends!

Just because your designer top doesn't fit you right anymore, doesn't mean it has to be a total loss- why not trade it for your friend's leather skirt- the one she never wears.
 
It's so nice to organize your closet, and a good chance to get rid of clothes you just don't wear, clothes you bought and regretted, or, sadly, (sometimes happily!), clothing that no longer fits.

Everyone has these issues, so get the gang together and agree to bring all your unwanted clothes for a great exchange. You get the chance to gain new pieces for your wardrobe- new to you- for no cost.

It's a win-win! Here are our suggestions for pulling off a great clothing swap:

 

How to:


1. Invite as many friends as you can- the more clothes, the better! It's also a nice icebreaker if you want to introduce different friends to each other. You can find cute invitations online to make it extra special.


2. Set up a big space so that there's lots of room to put everyone's clothes on display. When guests arrive, you might want to let each guest display their clothes in her own spot.
 

3. Once everyone has arrived and set up, serve champagne punch, (it won’t stain anything if it spills!) and let the swapping begin! Anything goes- shoes, jewelry, work clothes, party clothes, whatever! Allow everyone to swap between themselves. Money saving fun!
 

4. For food and drinks, a potluck of snacks is one great way to tie in to the community theme. Otherwise, a nice idea would be to go for some nice, light snacks, because no one wants to feel weighed down when they get new clothes! Tea or Iced tea, punch (recipe below), fruit and veggie platters, and
 lemon cupcakes is a nice balance of treats and eats. 

 



Strawberry Champagne Punch


This one is easy and refreshing! You can play around with the portions and still it will turn out great!

1- extra large bottle of champagne or sparkling wine
 
1- bag of frozen strawberries
1 -2 litre bottle of ginger ale.

Mix all the ingredients together in a punch bowl and enjoy! Couldn't be easier!

 

 

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Lessons in Friendship Learned from The Sims

Lessons in Friendship Learned from The Sims

 

One thing that can be said about The Sims, the game did put a lot of value on friendship!

Friendship has always been a powerful tool in The Sims, and to do well in its simulated life, a Sim should pursue new friendships and maintain old ones. When this happened, a Sim's career, health, and happiness all did better! 

Some more tips learned from The Sims:

 

Friends and Fun are as important as Eating and Sleeping.

Yup, when maintaining your sims health and happiness, the bar that measured input for fun and social activities carried as much weight as the bar that measured if your sim was hungry, tired, or had to go to the bathroom. 

With recent studies coming out to show that good friendships actually do make people live longer, healthier, happier lives, they must have been on to something!

 

 

Friendships are like plants; if you don't water them, they die.

Ah, the poetry of The Sims.  Through metaphors, we were taught that we must work actively to maintain our friendships - that means calls, visits, and good quality time.  It's a simple formula, but still probably more effective than just liking your buddie's Facebook posts..

 

 

It's nice to share gifts sometimes.

Remember when your sim would get a visit from a friend, and that friend would coming bearing a small gift, like a plant or some chocolates?  That gift was always happily received!

While the Sims were at one time pretty traditional in their gifts, there are so many small gifts we can bring when visiting our friends - some fresh produce from your garden, in a little basket, a batch of homemade cookies, a funny souvenir from your vacation - surprise and delight your real-life friends with small gifts from time to time, and you, too, can be a good friend like your old sim neighbours and friends!

 

Your friends can help you reach your career goals.

In the Sims, to get that next promotion, there was always a friends requirement. (Unless you had a good cheat code.)

In real life, friends can help you with your career too - they can help you find a job, volunteer for your company event, or just be there to listen to you complain about your boss.  

 

That can't be all of them!

What did I miss? Comment below!

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Some Best Quotes about Friendship

Some Best Quotes about Friendship

 

A handful of some of our favourite quotes about friendship, perfect filler for that homemade birthday card or friendship-themed presentation or speech!

 

 

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Menshealth
Real friends are always with us.
Wednesday, 28 September 2016 08:30
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5 ways to Meet New People when you move

5 ways to Meet New People when you move

 

You've got your new house, your new driver's licence, your new job. But your real estate agent probably didn't help you to make new friends from your new neighborhood!  If you are wondering how to meet new people after you move- or maybe you didn't move, but you'd still like to expand your social network- here are a couple of ideas!



Volunteer for something you care about
This is a great way to meet new people.  As a bonus, the people you meet here probably care about the same things you do, making a great spark for a friendship. There are all kinds of volunteering opportunities out there, at animal shelters, working with seniors, neighborhood beautification committees, coaching sports, planning fundraising events, there are almost as many opportunities as interests so it's easy to find something that you might enjoy!

 
Get a Part-Time Job
Maybe you don't need a job. Well, you can always lose the job and keep the friends you make there! Sometimes serving tables or pumping gas can be a handy way to make new friends, as you bond with coworkers and meet people in the neighborhood without worrying about office politics or taking work home with you.  (BTW, this is the only idea of the five that actually pays you money.)

Join a Community Class
If you are a new parent you could try a "Mommy and me" class to meet other new parents- there is a strong chance that other people will be there solo as well, and you'll already have something in common.  Or take a zumba class and have a laugh while you bond over the shared experience.  Try a painting class and meet other aspiring artists.  A chance to learn something and meet people at the same time!

Start walking or jogging around your new neighborhood
By walking around, not only will you familiarize yourself with your new neighborhood, but you can also observe who else is in the community.  Go frequently and you might start passing by your neighbors, noting which ones are similar to you in age, or in interests.  If  you pass some neighbors frequently, it is only a matter of time before you become familiar to each other, and then the next step is getting to know each other!

Join a Sports Team
It doesn't have to be serious or competitive. Casual or "beer" leagues exist for all age groups and all levels of experience.  Today's "soccer mom" might be defined as a woman who plays soccer, as in some places participation in women over 35 is rising rapidly.  Baseball beer leagues are always looking for more players, both men and women.  It's fun, and it is a chance to meet a whole team of potential new friends!


Have you found an effective way to meet new people? Please share in the comments below!

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How to be social and meet friends..when you work for yourself or from home

How to be social and meet friends..when you work for yourself or from home

 

All types of people are choosing to be their own boss, and reaping many benefits.

I'm sure there is a lot of "office life" that these professionals do not miss- the grumpy boss, the strict hours, the politics.

But working at a company does offer one big perk- the chance to meet lots of people and make friends.

If you are self-employed, here are some tips to keep networking, making new connections, and meeting friends and new people.

 

Network within your industry

Join a networking group.  All kinds of industries have these networking groups, from the Canadian Public Relations Society for people in PR to the AIGA for graphic designers in America with 67 chapters across the country, to the ISPA organization that brings together people in the Internet industry in the UK, there's something for everyone!

These groups normally cost a small, tax deductible fee for membership, which will make you part of a community of professionals in your industry.  They often host networking events and workshops, great for business growth, networking, and meeting with other professionals like yourself!

 

Attend trade shows with business cards, conversation topics, and a positive attitude

Make it a goal to network with one person each week, meet for a coffee or lunch and talk about work, compare notes, or learn how to help each other

Host your own networking event.  For example, throw a drop-in holiday party for others in your industry, both clients and competition



Participate in Learning Opportunities

Sign up for a class that can give you new skills in your work, e.g. accounting, or presentations

 Join skills groups such as Toastmasters, a very social organization that helps you to build public speaking confidence, and also hosts conferences

Subscribe to news feeds from local organizations that support entrepreneurs in the community, for example the Women's Entrerepise Network, which regularly hosts workshops and networking events for entrepreneurs



Work out of a Shared Co-op workspace instead of home

These office buildings bring entrepreneurs together, allowing you to rent a cubicle and share the services of an administrative assistant, working alongside other self-employed business people



Be Charitable

The networking trick that keeps on giving, find something that inspires you and give back some time by becoming a volunteer!

I know someone who is a contractor, but would volunteer to be the bbq-er at an annual women's sports tournament, it was a great opportunity to have lots of conversations, show off his competence (he always ended up doing some kind of handy man thing, like help to set up a tent, or fix a sign), and spread the word about his services in a fun environment.

 

 

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Tips: How to work a room at a party

Tips: How to work a room at a party

You’re at a friend’s party. You came because you promised you would and now you’re here and you don’t know anybody except the host. All around you people are talking and laughing and eating hors d’oeuvres, how are you supposed to have fun with a crowd of strangers? Aaahhh!

Familiar? Whether it’s for work or a social commitment, FriendMatch has gathered a few good pointers to get you through your next mixer event. We even read a book. It’s called, “The Art of Mingling” by Jeanne Martinet

 

Here are five ways to work a room:

 

Offer to Help. 

This is a classic move so we had to mention it. Grab that
tray of hors d’oeuvres and start passing it around- you have something to do, you’ll meet a lot of the people there, and if the conversation goes stale you have a great excuse to keep moving through the room.
 

The “Honest” Approach

If you can’t think of anything else just park yourself at the edge of a cluster of people and wait for someone to notice or acknowledge you. At this point you can say something like, “I hope you don’t mind me saying this, but I don’t know a soul here! My name is Jane Smith….” The humble nature of this approach, according to Martinet, makes you non –threatening and puts the other person in the position to help you out a little bit. Get help from someone? That sounds even easier than our previous suggestion!

The Fade In

First you’re on the edge of the circle. Then you inch a little closer, discreetly. Then you laugh when they laugh. After hanging out a bit, you chip in on the conversation, as if you had always been part of the group. This is the beauty of the fade-in. Sneaky and easy.

The Flattery Approach

According to Martinet a compliment is always a go-to icebreaker. Good= “I love your dress!” Bad= “I love your dress, it looks like you work out !” (unless you are hitting on someone).

How did you get here


Yup, that’s the last one from Martinet's book. You ask someone how they got here. It’s an open-ended question, it’s something you can both share information about since you both got there, and it just might lead to other conversation. E.g. Sally: “How did you get here?” Jane: “I rode my bicycle here,” Sally: “You ride your bicycle in the winter?” Jane: “Yes, I also cycle to work,” Sally: “Me too!” ……………etc.

 

 

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