What are your Thanksgiving traditions? Whether you're traveling the entire day, cooking a large meal, or simply enjoying a bite to eat with your immediate family, we want to know what you're doing for Turkey Day.
In the years past, we used to go to an International Thanksgiving. The host would make the turkey and mashed potatoes and everyone else would make a dish that was eaten in their country. There were almost 20 countries represented and after dinner and cleanup there was always a campfire and music.
In the past couple of years we have Thanksgiving with only our immediate family, my husband does most of the cooking and we all eat and mention what we are thankful for. Last year we had friends visit and we did a little Thanksgiving grace in Spanish as well (since one of them was Spanish). This year my husband and kids are going to do the Thanksgiving dinner. Groceries have been bought and the menu has been written out.
We do not put up the tree or do any holiday shopping before thanksgiving thus trying to keep the holiday separate.
Thankfully, all of our immediate family is in town so traveling can be kept to a minimum; however, that means two Thanksgiving meals in one day.
We travel to my husband's aunt's home for a "lunch" gathering, and we go to my sister's home for Thanksgiving dinner. Some of our favorite traditions include enjoying my grandma in law's "bread balls." They're a deep fried, salted ball of bread that is absolutely amazing and a favorite with the whole family.
At my sister's house, we write on a tablecloth the different things we're thankful for that year which can be reused year after year. I just take a dish to both places, so it's not too difficult for me! I likewise do not start Christmas decorating until Thanksgiving is over! We definitely try to keep the focus on this holiday, despite what society is telling us to focus on!
We have both sides of the family in town. We are very lucky that my mother-in-law is always very gracious about working around my mom's timing. This year we will go to my in-laws' for pancakes and eggs, and then after naptime we will go over to my mom's.
It will be nice not to try to cram two big turkey dinners into one day. My mom cooks a huge dinner for her six kids, who all have spouses and kids. I like the contrast of the smaller crowd at my husband's side of the family and the chaos on mine. Both sides are always a great time, and my kids think that seeing both sets of grandparents makes for the perfect day.
Every other year, my grandpa on my dad's side rents out a big retreat center. We all stay in cabins for three nights and take turns teaming up with cousins to cook big meals for all 40-plus people. This is an off-year, but I am still excited to know that next year I will get to see my cousins again. It's really fun to see everyone's kids growing and enjoying one another, and every year there seems to be a new baby or two to meet.
We keep a Thanksgiving journal and record every year what each member of our family is thankful for. Right now it's kind of comical with the kids, but they also come up with some pretty meaningful things, too. I'm anticipating that over the years it will become a treasured tradition to go back and read a history of our family's big and small blessings.
We are going to both sides this year for Thanksgiving (this is a first) and we hosted last year. A big tradition for us is a nice breakfast while we watch the Macy's parade, play games and do Thanksgiving crafts.
The children love my Pilgrim Pies, so I will be making them to bring to my mother-in-law's.
I received a book this year, which gives the story, songs, food and lots more about the true meaning behind this holiday. We will be completing several of those activities. In addition, our family attends our church's Thanksgiving Eve service.
I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!