Thanksgiving Day: Beyond the Menu

Thanksgiving Day: Beyond the Menu

Each year we encounter the same dilemma on Thanksgiving Day.  We come home from the Turkey Trot all energized, with the kids all wound up, ready to keep running for a few more hours, but they end up at loose ends because my sister and I jump in the kitchen to get going with the menu, while the guys hit the couch to watch the game.  This year, TallyKid must have recalled years past where things were too grown up for her taste and she decided to take matters in to her own hands, planning a day of fun family activities.

Here is our official “Beyond the Menu” agenda for Thanksgiving Day:

  • Fall Leaves: Head out for a nature walk and have everyone bring an empty garbage bag.  Each person has to fill their garbage bag with fall leaves.  Once everyone’s bag is full, head home and have fun playing in the leaves, raking them, jumping in them, making piles of them and maybe even doing some crafts with them.
  • Thankful Tree: Prepare a thankful tree on a wall in your home.  During your meal, everyone can head over and take a leaf off and write their thankful thoughts on the leaf before putting it back on the tree.  By the end of seconds or thirds, your family’s thankful tree will be full of thankful thoughts.  I like the idea of using the kids hand print cut outs as the leaves, which will become keepsakes after the tree comes down.

  • Two Legged Races: Take a quick break after stuffing yourself and then get ready for an old fashioned two legged race.  The laughter will work off a few calories, as you watch family members tumble over each other while they race with legs tied together.
  • Thanksgiving Bracelet and Story: TallyKid brought this activity home from school the other day and I thought it was so cute and also taught the story of Thanksgiving in a simple and memorable way.  Use pipe cleaner and the appropriate color beads to make bracelets that tell the story of Thanksgiving, using this guide:

  • Pie Toss: Have a bone to pick with the person who ate the last piece of pie?  Take some empty disposable pie pans filled with whip cream – Ready, aim, fire!
  • Corn & Pumpkin Planting: I know nothing about gardening and I am thinking the season for planting has passed.  I am not sure.  Nevertheless, after everyone hears the story of Thanksgiving and makes their bracelets, let the kids dig away and drop in some seeds to plant their own crops in preparation for next year’s Thanksgiving feast.

How do you and your family spend Thanksgiving Day?

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