My Latest Snag: The Baby Sherpa Fleece.
I really wanted to buy micro this fleece for fall, but I had a really hard time justifying the price tag given how quickly he is growing. He is SO tall — he is currently wearing size 6 months for length and even some of his 3-6 month tops look snug and small! — and I worried I’d invest in the damn thing and he’d outgrow it in a matter of weeks. Then I found this! PERFECT.
You’re Sooooo Popular: The Perfect Fall Heel.
The most popular items on the blog this week:
+Super fun statement mules on CRAZY sale.
+On-trend dream sweater for this season.
+In love with this raincoat.
#Turbothot: Making Adult Friends.
I’ve had a few Magpie readers write to tell me that they’ve recently moved cities and are struggling to make friends as an adult.
I hear ya.
After college, it became far more difficult for me to make new friends. I became set in my own routines and niches owing to my career and my marriage. A lot of the avenues for friend discovery petered out on their own after college anyhow — you’ve got to be a lot more proactive and outgoing to find new ones.
After moving to Chicago, I remember feeling very isolated, especially since I was still commuting to D.C. every other week for work. I recall thinking that joining a gym might be a good place to meet like-minded women, but the mechanics proved awkward: what, do I stop someone while she towels off from the shower in the locker room and strike up conversation? Smile creepily at someone on a treadmill? People tend to be in the zone at the gym; it’s not exactly a spot where you sit around waiting for conversation. Even when I attended barre and yoga classes, where there’s a bit more time before or after class to exchange pleasantries with neighbors, it felt uncomfortable, as everyone in the room was listening in. I considered joining a meet-up but chickened out at the last minute. I even scoured LinkedIn, filtering for just connections in Chicago, and set myself up on weird friend dates with acquaintances from past schools–none of which went well. It’s not that they went badly, exactly, but it always felt as though the gals were “doing me a solid” by showing up to meet my friendless self, though they clearly intended to return to their own well-established routines with their own well-established friendships afterward.
The best way I made friends in Chicago? Starting a book club. It started as myself, my sister, and three other ladies who had attended college with another sister of mine. Over time, the club grew as members would bring friends, who would bring friends of friends. And as I established myself in the city and made friends through other avenues (one of them being the wife of a work colleague, for example), I would invite them to join, too. The formula is foolproof because everyone is instantly connected by a shared interest (books!) and experience (reading the same book at the same time!), and who doesn’t like wine and snacks? At the same time, some of the gals and I hit it off particularly well and I’d ask them out to lunch or for drinks in the weeks intervening. We became a happy little posse and support system for one another: I remember people swapping parenting tips, exchanging clothes, offering to pet-sit for one another. It was how I found my first nanny, how I divested a ton of accessories and skincare products when I was leaving the city so that I wouldn’t have to throw it away, how I could rest easy that my dog would be cared for if I were to go into labor early with mini.
It can start simply enough: just find two friends or acquaintances (this can start at work, too, if your only resource is your network of colleagues!) and ask them each to invite a friend or two interested in reading. (If you need a suggestion for your first convening, take a look through my past book club picks, as I include discussion questions for many of the books, and they can be great guideposts for conversation. If you go with your own pick, a foolproof way to kick off the convo: have everyone rate the book 1-5 and explain why they’ve scored the book as such. It almost always gives way to an easy and stirring conversation.) Then grab a couple of bottles of wine and put together a cheese board or a couple of appetizers (my spiced shrimp recipe is always a hit). Voila.
Another reason why I love reading.
And if books aren’t your jam (I highly doubt this if you are a seasoned Magpie reader!), you could do an article club (sign up for my friend Hitha’s 5 Smart Reads — she chooses five interesting, topical articles every day and almost any of these would be ideal for an “article club”), a cooking club, a baking club. Anything that gives women a reason to gather in an apartment for an evening of conversation and shared experience.
Any other tips for making new friends as an adult? Please share!
P.P.S. Gifts for girlfriends.
Post-Scripts: The It Bag.
+Naomi had a great roundup of wonderful children’s books that is a solid complement to this post of mine on the same subject — though she includes recs for even older children! I’m picking up this and this for my New York babies!
+Love me a good waffle tee.
+Love this dark floral dress for a little gal.
+Into this simple and endlessly versatile black turtleneck dress. Dress up with heels and major earrings or down with pointed-toe flats.