Tell Us About Your Friends

We invite you to share your thoughts here on the Ames girls’ story, or to tell us about your own group of friends. (If there’s a follow-up project, we may be back in touch for more details. Thanks!)

Click here to share your thoughts.
(274) Amy J. Maurer
Tue, 22 September 2009 18:30:14 +0000

Your story profoundly relates to a decade-long friendship of 6 girlfriends (I included) also from Ames. However, we met in 1998 and attended ISU together. We all lived to together with little to no fighting. Nightly, we gathered in our livingroom to discuss issues from each friend's field of study (Dietetics and Pharmacy, Graphic Design, Speech-Pathology and Spanish, Transportation-Logistics, and Vet Medicine and Pyschology). Our family of self-proclaimed 'sisters' branched off to sites around the globe. All but one of us has traveled and/or lived in different parts of the world to serve various communities. We talk weekly and reunite at least once a year. This remarkable web of support keep us strong-willed and pushes each one of us to accomplish more than we would have ever attempted alone! Our rare, tight bond not only grows from within each person of our group, but also our strength ripples out to encouragingly affect other individuals and communities. Our clan of girls will live and dream together forever!

(273) Dale
Tue, 22 September 2009 08:51:09 +0000

I was given "The Girls from Ames" by a friend who now lives in California.

We are a group of four women, originally from Auckland, New Zealand. We worked together in a corporate office in various roles for over a decade.

Every year we go away on a "doris" holiday in fantastic locations - Rotorua, Sydney, Melbourne, Port Douglas, Noosa, Hawaii and Fiji to name a few. Over the years the group has extended to three female offspring and the tradition has now continued for nearly twenty years.

We have shared heartbreaks, deaths and illnesses and our bond is as close as ever. Our friendship has sustained us through the darkest of times and the best of times.

Our story echoes so many of the sentiments expressed in this book.

Cheers to the next 40, girls!

(272) Kay
Sun, 20 September 2009 22:25:21 +0000

I loved the book. My best friend (Kathy) and I just celebrated our 40 years of friendship this August. There were three of us but we lost Mel unexpectedly a year ago. I am thankful also to the others friends who joined my circle over the years (which includes my sister)and whom are still a very vital part of my life even though we live in different states. Being from IL and just a year younger than The Girls from Ames, many of their experiences mirror mine. Thanks for the candor, joy and sorrows.


(271) Tiffany
Sat, 19 September 2009 00:40:32 +0000

I, like most of the women who have posted just finished reading The Girls from Ames. I first want to say thank you for sharing your story with all of us. I found myself immersed in the emotions of all of the Ames Girls throughout the book. This was a heartwarming, beautifully crafted book that makes me think about my own friendships that have brought so much to my life. I am in my twenties now, but I have already discovered the powerful bond of female friendships and have been truly blessed to have been touched by so many different women in my life. Thank you again for your candidness and I wish you forty more wonderful years of friendship!

(270) Carol S
Tue, 15 September 2009 04:06:39 +0000

I just finished reading Girls From Ames. I felt like my friends and I from Loras College in Dubuque, IA could have written that book. We get together once a year - each taking a turn to host a reunion. There are eight of us - Karen, Koopie, Sarah, Kristen, Joanne, Catherine, Patricia and Carol. We called ourselves "The Losers" at college because we all studied so hard and people had to pry us away from the library! (Te he Mom if you are reading this!) We would see each other across campus and make an "L" with our fingers and put it on our forehead and just laugh at each other. Everyone loved the challenge of getting the "Losers" to come out to the pubs and when we did - boy did we have fun!We are now stay-at-home moms, doctors, advertising directors, commerical loan officers, CPAs, marketing directors and business owners. We are having our 20something Loser reunion in Cedar Rapids, IA in October.

Thanks Ames Girls for sharing your stories!

(269) Jean Mac
Mon, 14 September 2009 18:09:28 +0000

Thanks Jeff. I read this book on a solo weekend, sans my SWEETIE, at our lake cottage in Wisconsin. It was not only a great escape into the lives of women 10 years my junior, but brought back so many memories of the connections I have with women, one since the age of 5.

Not counting my two sisters (one younger, one older) I have been enriched by having about 10 women in my life (Mary Kay, Denise, Pat, Cactus Carol, Jennifer, Ruth, Louise, Marge, Linda, Suzie"¦) and can relate to not only the roles they play in one's life, but the healthy benefits I think we all share from having these friendships.

My "˜group of girls' so to speak, don't all live in the same state; some have never all met, but all have heard stories of each other, conjured up a visible image of each other and know that they exist.

Like the Ames Girls, depending on when each came into my life, our means of contact has changed from passing notes in the halls when changing classes to jokes or tear-jerking images on an email. I don't think any of us Tweet, but our snippets shared throughout the year keep our friendship alive.

Here's to the DAUGHTERS of my groups of girls, that they too have full lives with a steadfast group of woman for support and encouragement.

(268) Cathy Jones
Mon, 14 September 2009 17:26:23 +0000

I have not read the book yet, but plan to. I read ABOUT it in the Aug. issue of Bottom Line. In the early '70's there were several young married couples who became friends through a Sunday school class in Ottumwa, Iowa. We are currently in various cities in Iowa and 2 other states, but have maintained the friendship for nearly 40 years. In Jan. 2010 we are all going on a Caribbean cruise together. E-mail has certainly helped us, but before that we sent cards and letters and made phone calls. These friends mean as much as brothers and sisters. Our daughter regards them as surrogate aunts and uncles.

(267) Karen
Mon, 14 September 2009 01:05:49 +0000

I knew from the beginning of this book that I would find it to be a story that parallels my own. I, too, have a 40+ year friendship with a group of girls we call "The Magnificent 7" although there are technically nine of us! We are from Central California, and get together for long week-end reunions at least once a year. Just like the girls from Ames, some of us met in Kindergarten, and a few others in the 9th grade. But, collectively, we are like sisters----our friendship bond utterly and completely non-breakable!!! I was the first to read the book, and in two weeks, we will be meeting for our annual reunion in Pismo Beach, California, where the book will be passed on for the next friend to read. This book will circulate our group, and touch each and every one of us in the very same way. It was an endearing piece of work.....thank you!

Karen Bolinger

(266) Allison
Sun, 13 September 2009 20:37:43 +0000

This is the book I wanted to write about my group of 8 friends. We are in our mid-20's now, and we are in the middle of getting married and starting families. Some of us live close to one another, some live farther away, and some are closer than others.

About 2 years ago we lost the youngest of the group, Donna, to colon cancer. She was 22 years old. Dealing with her illness for the 3 months from her diagnosis to death brought us all much closer together.

It reinforced how strong our bonds are, and that we should make the decision every day to honor our friendships. The book made me look forward to all of the fun things coming up in our lives, and to appreciate where we are right now.

(265) Christie
Sun, 13 September 2009 01:31:27 +0000

As I read about the girls from Ames I couldn't help but think of my own set of friends from college that I hold close to my heart. We are the girls from GCC (Grove City College). Five of us bonded during our 4 years there and have had our annual "girls weekends" ever since. While we are a little younger than the Iowa girls, mid 30's, the experiences and personalities of the Iowa girls resonated with me. We are having our girls weekend in two weeks and I am especially excited to see them all after reading the book and holding them in my heart the whole time. I plan to buy them each a copy of this story of friendship as a gift that I know will touch them all as well. Thank you.

(264) Irma
Thu, 10 September 2009 21:29:52 +0000

Thank you for sharing their lives with the rest of us. I have had a best friend since age 5. We're in our 40s now. When I see her, it takes me back to age 7 when we did our first communion and back to the junior high dance. She is someone who knows me completely. I hope our girls can form life long friendships.

(263) Kerry Ann Sullivan
Wed, 9 September 2009 17:23:34 +0000

What a wonderful book. I am a part of a group of 7 girlfriends who for the most part have been together since Kindergarten. We are now just turning 40yrs old. The stories of the Ames girls were astounding in comparing them to my own group of friends. Tragedies and triumphs, laughter and crying. My experience is that not every woman is fortunate enough to be surrounded with lifelong friends. While there might be many groups that you will hear from, there are just as many women that do not get to experience this. My own sister, grew up in the same environment, has a similar personality to mine, yet did not grow up with a core group of female friends. Later in life we have definetely realized how important this is to us, and have rallied around each other. Our year of turning 40 years old has gotten us together in a variety of ways. Three of us are running a relay in a women's triathalon as a tribute to the group as a whole. "The Birds" were our nickname in high school....we flocked together.
We all have different personalities, but like the Ames girls there are pairs of us closer than others. About 10yrs back we instituted a girls night out for dinner once a month. Whomever can come, or is living near each other gets together. It has strengthened our bonds.
Thank you for sharing the story of the Ames girls. I hope my own daughter gets to share in true friendship, that which lasts a lifetime and knows you best.

(262) Mary Place
Tue, 8 September 2009 16:17:05 +0000

I just finished reading The Girls from Ames, a selection of my book club, which is really a group of friends who have shared each other's lives for the past 35+ years. We meet as a book club, but we also meet as a support group for what is happening in our lives. As Angela predicted on the video from the Ames Borders store, the book did resonate with me, and I'll know how my friends reacted when we discuss it over lunch on October 3.

(261) Amy
Tue, 8 September 2009 03:07:06 +0000

I am lucky enough to have married one of the boys from Marshalltown, Iowa. He is a Iowa State engineering grad and I died laughing while reading your book! When I met Pat, I told him I was from Waverly and he naturally assumed Waverly, Iowa. When I told him it was Waverly, MN he started arguing with me that there was no town like that in MN but that was where I was from. A small rural farming town that I was lucky to have grown up in. Better than the town were the 8 best friends that I have had the honor of having for 41 years! Five of us have a 3 generation friendship (our grandparents and parents were friends).

I was rolling in laughter when I read about the keg parties, the cornfields, beauty treatments, and bad beat up cars. (Most of us drove tractors~!)We have 3 teachers, one cosmotologist, one graphic artist, one sales rep, a radiology tech, one business owner,and one accounts receivable rep. All of us but one have kids.

We have had tragedy, death and laughter. They are the first people that I contact with any crisis or story. I would be truly lost without them!

We were actually egging cars in Buffalo, MN when our friend Jodi met her husband Todd in the parking lot of a grocery store where we were buying more eggs for our ventures. They now have two kids and live very close to were they met. We were 16 and they took forever to get married! All 9 of us actually made a bet that the last person to get married would get a kitty of money ($200.00). That was me. I was the last. My wonderful friends had a special presentation for me at my wedding to Marshalltown native Pat Wheeler that still makes me laugh when I think of it.

If Kelly or Marilyn would ever like to meet for coffee I would buy. Your stories sound like mine and we share many of the same experiences. I live in Eagan and it would be a great half way point from St. Paul and Faribault! My email is included, I would love to meet you!

(260) Beth Mack
Mon, 7 September 2009 19:17:41 +0000

Thank you for sharing this story -I just finished the book. I am three years older than the girls from Ames so I could relate to many of their memories. In addition to having lived in Des Moines for 16 of the past 26 years - I recognize the back-drop. I stay in touch with friends from many different stages of my life although I wasn't fortunate to be part of such a tight-knit group since childhood. I am going to see friends from high school and college this coming weekend in Wisconsin and those relationships are even more special to me after reading this book.

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