While every family is different, Thanksgiving Day generally revolves around food, family, and football. Other common traditions are watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, doing some kind of craft, a viewing of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, etc, but those can get stale – and, they often feel like traditions, and not like your traditions.
If you’re looking for ways to make the day memorable for your kids now and in the years to come, these 9 moms are sharing cheap, easy, and fun ways to tailor Thanksgiving to your family.
#9. A wreath-of-thanks.
Cut out leaves in multiple colors, and have everyone in your family write something they’re thankful for on one each day in November. Then, on Thanksgiving morning, turn them into a wreath!
#8. Take a walk.
The trees are beautiful (and crunchy for jumping in), the weather should be brisk but not too cold with a coat and hat, and everyone can use some fresh air and calorie burning before you go back and attack the pie. It’s a great way to connect with your family away from the kitchen and the television for at least an hour of the day.
#7. A family football game.
This is another great way to get outside and burn off some calories (for the grownups) and energy (for the kids).
#6. Turn on the Christmas music.
Celebrate the changing of holiday season on your drive home (or during cleanup) when you switch on the Christmas music for the first time this year.
#5. Take a nap.
There’s nothing better than cleaning up the kitchen and then putting your feet up for an hour or two. Try to plan your dinner around younger kids’ nap schedules and everyone will be happier (and more rested) for pie.
#4. Sometimes it’s okay to be selfish.
Hey, if you’re doing all of the cooking, why not make something you really love – even if you know everyone else at the table will turn up their nose? For my mom, it’s some kind of “salad” that’s actually jell-o based, but others have created delicious vegetable sides they know will end up back home in their fridge – and in their bellies over the next week.
#3. Have your kids make placemats or cards.
It will keep them busy and everyone will love seeing how their custom place at the table is decorated.
#2. Create a “thankful tree.”
It doesn’t have to be a real tree – you can cut one out of construction paper and tape it to the wall a couple of weeks before the holiday. Have some leaf cutouts on hand, and anytime you or your kids or spouse think of something they’re thankful for, write it on a leaf and put it on the tree.
You can also incorporate this on the day by asking guests to add a leaf or two of their own.
#1. Oldies are still goodies.
Your kids are bound to enjoy getting up early to be greeted by the Macy’s parade, cinnamon rolls, and a tailored craft that will get them in the mood for the day. Don’t mess with all of the day’s traditions!
I hope you’ve got plenty of pumpkin pie and whipped cream on the horizon!