As we slowly emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us plan to give thanks with those we couldn’t see last year. Do gratitude in a radical way this Thanksgiving: Ponder these things to make this year’s celebration stand out.
Honor Those Who Have Passed
Holidays are hard without loved ones who’ve died. Find ways to honor them that will spark conversation with others who are missing them, too. Honor doesn’t have to mean solemn observations, either. You can use your grandmother’s speakeasy glasses for drinks, make your mom’s 1970’s Swiss Corn Bake, or add olives to the charcuterie board because your pal Amy hated them and it was a running joke.
A More Nutritious Feast
Because of the pandemic, many people are more inspired now than ever to make healthier choices to strengthen their immune systems. But just because your priorities have changed doesn’t mean you have to forgo traditions. Traditional carb-laden side dishes have delicious equivalents. And if you haven’t had a local organic free-range turkey, you’ll love discovering what a difference it makes.
Share Your Gifts
Crafting, ukulele, mad Knockout City skills—most of us did some dabbling over the past eighteen months. Have a pandemic talent showcase and finish it off with a sourdough taste test competition.
Build ways to help others into your Thanksgiving celebration.
- Give blood. Click here to find a local donation site.
- Give time. Find out how you can volunteer with a food bank, soup kitchen, or meal delivery service.
- Give sweat. Many organizations hold fundraising fun runs at this time of year; Wheeler Mission’s Drumstick Dash helps the homeless and gets you off the couch.
A gratitude game will make you feel better than a third piece of pumpkin pie. Little ones especially like the pick-up sticks gratitude game, where each color represents a category. Name a thing you’re grateful for in the categories corresponding to the colors of the sticks you picked up. Or have a photo of each celebration attendee; level up with awkward family photos. Everyone writes one thing they appreciate about each other person on a notecard and tucks it under their photo. Between football games, everyone gets to read their own stack.
No matter how you celebrate your Thanksgiving, there’s a good chance it will be more festive and family-filled than last year’s. That, alone, is a reason to give thanks.