We’re not taking sides or anything, but when it comes to voting for our favorite holiday of the year, let’s just say that Thanksgiving is really, really close to the top. Just as it is for millions of people all over the country, and for all the right reasons.
And yet, as much as we all love and cling to our favorite holiday traditions, it can be fun and rewarding to broaden your repertoire, so to speak, by interjecting a new tradition or two. So, on your behalf, we’ve done a little research to see what people are doing in other parts of the country – and perhaps here in the Inland Empire, as well – to spice up their Thanksgiving Day celebration.
- Gratitude Rolls – As your guests arrive, ask them to jot down one thing they’re thankful for on a small piece of parchment paper. Once you have them all collected, lay each strip on crescent dough before rolling it up. Once dinner is served, have each person read aloud the message inside their baked roll, even if the author has chosen not to share their name. After all, some people are for more comfortable expressing themselves anonymously, even among family and friends.
- Thankful Tree – For a more decorative twist on Gratitude Rolls, especially if you have the eyes and hands of a crafts person, create a Thankful Tree, one designed to have “I’m thankful for” notes written and hung for all to view and read both now, and in years to come. You can craft a Thankful Tree that doubles as a centerpiece or a piece of art suitable for framing.
- Develop a Family Cookbook – Talk about being open to new ideas! Unless you have the exact same Thanksgiving meal, year after year, how about starting a family Thanksgiving cookbook with the recipes for every course, soup to nuts. A cookbook that can then be added to each year with all the latest menu entries. Not only will these recipes be preserved forever, but in quiet moments of reminiscence, you can recall not just specific Thanksgiving dinners, but every single dish that was served that day.
- Do Unto Others – Whether you decide to help out at a local shelter, collect food for a food bank, or make a family donation to those less fortunate, get your kids involved to help teach them how easy and rewarding it can be to make a positive impact on someone else’s life.