Thanksgiving is one of the most celebrated holidays of the year. Families come together to share stories, eat special meals that have been passed down through the generations, play games and welcome new members to the family. It’s a time that is to always be cherished and celebrated.
But too often, I’ve heard people say, “Thanksgiving shouldn’t be the only day that we show we are grateful and we should celebrate our loved ones throughout the year.”
Of course, this is true, but let’s face it. We all get busy, days go by, weeks turn into months and then Thanksgiving has come around again, and yet another year has gone by.
So I wanted to give you some ideas to make this Thanksgiving one that is extra amazing, not just for the moment, but for the entire year. In fact, you can get my gratitude planner here.
1. Share sentiments of gratitude – Get a 12-month calendar and hang it up on the wall for the following year. As people start arriving for your Turkey Day celebration, have them write something that they are thankful for on their birthday. Not only do you get to share in their memory, but you will always remember their birthday. This calendar can then be copied and sent to other family members as well.
2. Reach out to family members far away – With technology as advanced as it is, schedule a time to Skype or Face Time with relatives or friends. You might not be able to be together physically, but you can certainly be together virtually.
3. Create new traditions – Naturally, we all have traditions that have been passed along over the years, but it would be fantastic to create new ones that younger family members can call their own and pass down to their children. They too will be able to share stories with their grandchildren just as we do today.
4. “Thank You” cards – As time passes, we often forget (not intentionally) about the great times had during Thanksgiving and we don’t’ take the time to stay in touch and show our appreciation for one another. So for your Thanksgiving Day celebration, have each person bring a set of 12 “Thank You” cards. Then upon arrival, they will choose 12 different people (couples are ok too) and ask them to address the envelopes (one person per envelope). Then, during the year, you’ll send one “Thank You” card out each month showing your appreciation for them. It’s a great way to show someone you’re thinking about them and that they are appreciated. The best cards are the ones from the kids.
5. Remember those who have passed and welcome those who are new – It’s never easy to celebrate when there’s a family member that is no longer with us. It leaves a hole in our heart and it’s often hard to be thankful when we are hurting. But the best way to get past the hurt is to celebrate them. Take a moment before serving the food to share a memory or two of that person acknowledging just how important and special they were to the family.
Additionally, take a moment to welcome the newbies. The new spouses, new babies, boyfriends or girlfriends. It makes them feel a part of the family and grateful to be included.
Please leave a comment below and tell me about your Thanksgiving memories.