Thanksgiving, like most holidays, tends to pass just too quickly. If you are looking for a way to make the holiday more meaningful consider trying some family friendly Thanksgiving traditions. This is a great way to involve all the family members in the fun of Thanksgiving. The key to successful family friendly Thanksgiving traditions is to plan ahead concerning what you really want to do. Ask yourself the following questions:
1.Do I want traditions that will help with the menu planning, cooking and serving of the Thanksgiving meal?
2.Do I want traditions that involve decorating for the holiday? Do I want to do craft projects with kids, teenagers or adults on Thanksgiving Day?
3.Do I want my traditions to involve some other aspect of Thanksgiving like football, nature walks or learning about our families’ history?
4.Do I want my family friendly Thanksgiving traditions to be about giving back to my community to those who are less fortunate?
5.Do I want my tradition to reflect a ritual of Thanksgiving like the prayer before the meal, carving the turkey or breaking the wishbone?
After you have decided what you want your new family friendly Thanksgiving tradition to focus on then you can proceed on the planning for that particular new tradition. Focus on one or two things so you don’t become overwhelmed with the planning and your family doesn’t become overwhelmed trying to do it all. Just remember the most important thing is that you are all together.
•For a truly family-centered meal considering enlisting everyone’s help. Have a job jar where everyone (even the youngest) can choose a job to help with. Jobs can range from the actual cooking of an item for dinner, to table setting and decorating. You may need to make a few accommodations but the key here is to relax and let everybody do their thing.
•Consider having a craft project or two for everyone to participate in. Look at the ages and abilities of everyone who will be involved and then go from there. There are numerous online websites that can provide you with all the information you need for literally hundreds of different craft projects. For very young kids consider Thanksgiving printables and markers or crayons while teenagers and adults can take part in a complicated project. Again the key here is to plan ahead and have everything on hand that you need for your chosen project.
•For a fun family friendly Thanksgiving tradition gather your family around to learn about their ancestors. You can have pictures, journals and even food from the country of origin for everyone to try. Consider making a scrapbook to reflect your family’s heritage and add a Thanksgiving picture of your family. It’s a tradition you can continue on for years.
•While most of us tend to take for granted the bounty of our lives, Thanksgiving is a great time to remember those who have less. There are numerous food banks, soup kitchens and retirement homes that can use help on this holiday. Consider a donation to a food bank, serving dinner at a soup kitchen or visiting those at a retirement home who may be alone at holiday time. You may find that this becomes the most meaningful family tradition your family participates in.
•You may want to start a family tradition for the pre dinner prayer. Perhaps you may want the oldest family member in attendance to offer the prayer or rotate the prayer among family members. Whatever you choose just be sure that it is meaningful for your family and only serves to make Thanksgiving more joyful for you and yours.