Family, Fun and Gratitude –Thanksgiving’s Real Treats

Thanksgiving dinner on table with the words Thanksgiving Dinner Joy

During the days running up to Thanksgiving, most of us focus on the food. We can smell the turkey and dream about the stuffing, gramma’s sweet potato casserole and pies, lots of pies. But after the feast, when it’s time to reflect on what was special about the day, our thoughts turn to family, fun and gratitude as we enjoy this very special holiday with the ones we love.

As you prepare the holiday meal try to think about the things that make Thanksgiving such a unique day. Here are some ideas to help make this year extra special.

Put the focus on Family:

  1. Take a family photo and consider getting separate pictures of each individual family “unit”. Think Christmas card photo.
  2. Incorporate one or two recipes that have been passed down from older generations into the repast.
  3. Make the centerpiece or table decorations together as a family, letting all the ages add their own contributions.

Make it Fun:

  1. Maybe break the “no television allowed” rule at least for a little while so guests can enjoy some football, the Macy’s parade or maybe even the National Dog Show!
  2. If time and weather permits, a walk or game outside will increase appetites and uptick the energy level.
  3. Plan a few games or crafts that everyone can do once the meal is over. It will keep the after-dinner naps at bay.

Leave Time for Gratitude

The true reason for Thanksgiving is simple, it’s in the name, it is a time to give thanks. So be sure you set aside some time to do just that.

    1. Have a gratitude jar, small pieces of paper and pens available. Ask everyone to write one or two things for which they are grateful and place it in the jar. Then just before the meal, read the notes together.
    2. Have a table set up to make thank you cards to share on the day or send later. Make the cards or have pre-purchased cards available. Encourage guests to write a few cards for special people in their lives.
    3. Share a toast of gratitude, by one individual or let others join in with their own toast, keeping on the theme of giving thanks.

With all this in mind, accompanied by a well-prepared feast, this Thanksgiving will be a day full of the joys of being together and something for which to be thankful for as the year comes to an end.