Whether you’re celebrating with two or twenty this Thanksgiving, we have some ideas to make it the best one yet, from Thanksgiving invitations to table settings and more. This classic American holiday has changed little throughout the years, but these new ideas are putting a fresh twist on the traditional celebration. So keep what you and your family love and add something new to see if it will become an annual tradition at your house.
Here are 8 new Thanksgiving ideas to try:
1. Update Your Thanksgiving Meal
Turkey, stuffing and gravy are the staples at most Thanksgiving meals. Pick your favorites and plan them early. Then you can experiment with new items to compliment the meal. These unique Thanksgiving side dish recipes from Delish will be sure to please and impress your dinner guests. The Buffalo Brussels Sprouts are highly addictive, vegetables in disguise for even your most picky eaters. And forget onions from a can, top your Green Bean Casserole with whole fried onion rings for an experiment you won’t regret.
This timing chart from All Recipes is a handy guide to your schedule for the big day. And the fact that they’ve built in wine breaks makes us all kinds of happy. Grandma likely didn’t have one of these!
2. Try a Thanksgiving Potluck
Stress less this Thanksgiving and share the work with your guests. Ask them to bring their favorite side dish and host a buffet-style dinner. They’ll feel great about contributing and you’ll get to taste new dishes that might become fresh traditions at your house. And, no one wants to miss out on the best part of Thanksgiving — the leftovers! After the dinner, set up a to-go station with eco-friendly paper containers in a variety of sizes
and types so that guests can pack up a dish to enjoy later. Also, consider personalized Thanksgiving potluck invitations that include instructions on what to bring. At websites such PurpleTrail it’s easy to create your Thanksgiving invitations with custom text and instructions.
Disposable boxes like those above via HGTV can be adorned with their cute free printable labels to remember what’s inside. It’s also a nice idea to assemble a meal-to-go for friends or family who missed the festivities due to work or other obligations. Do a good deed and deliver them later in the day and you’ll go to sleep with a happy heart on Thanksgiving.
4. Give Thanksgiving Gratitude
Don’t forget to incorporate the reason for the season in your Thanksgiving dinner plans. Simple expressions of thanks such as inviting guests to share something for which they are thankful as they take their seat at the table will start dinner off in a thoughtful way.
Or make it more interactive and ask everyone to say something they are grateful for about the person sitting to their immediate right. These simple, handwritten placemats via Abby M. Interiors give guests a way to write or doodle notes of gratitude. Or add a beautiful Thanksgiving thank you card to each place setting with a handwritten
note inside expressing your appreciation of their presence in your life.
5. Add a Friendsgiving
America is seeing a new Thanksgiving trend emerge – the Friendsgiving. It seems that we love Thanksgiving so much that we want to celebrate it once with family and then two or (even three!) times with friends. Who says turkey, stuffing and gravy is just for dinner
with Aunt Marge? Break out the Friendsgiving-themed Thanksgiving invitations, add Thanksgiving fare and gather your best pals around the table for a bounty of food and beverages.
6. Make a Fresh Table Setting
Thanksgiving is a great excuse to give your table a makeover. A new tablecloth or runner will make your Thanksgiving table setting fresh and new. From there you can add many natural items combined with items around the house to create a beautiful, layered Thanksgiving table. If you live in a temperate climate, consider taking the feast outdoors.
This Thanksgiving table by HGTV is simple, yet oh-so lovely. One of our favorite things is the small succulent-filled ghost pumpkins that double as a favor for guests. (http://www.hgtv.com/design/make-and-celebrate/entertaining/our-favorite-thanksgiving-table-setting-ideas-pictures).
As a more formal option, this table with lovely footed urns overflowing with blooms makes a dramatic statement. We love the old board used instead of a table runner to blend the
sophisticated with the organic. The pop of teal is a non-traditional Thanksgiving color but adds a fresh spin on a classic Thanksgiving table.
7. Create Custom Thanksgiving Invitations
A custom Thanksgiving invitation is a great way to kick off your celebration. Add personalized text or photos to make a one-of-a-kind Turkey Day invite that will leave
them anxious to attend. A paper Thanksgiving dinner invitation is a great tradition that’s still in style, but add your family’s name or photo to send something truly unique.
8. Plan Fun Thanksgiving Day Entertainment
Thanksgiving comes with its own set of entertainment options, from football games to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. But if you’re looking for some additional party games to play on Turkey Day check out this list of great Thanksgiving party games via Play Party Plan. This Thanksgiving Pictionary game is a great way to keep the party going before
the food coma sets in and these Minute to Win It-style Thanksgiving games will keep everyone active and happy.
We hope these ideas give you the inspiration to add a unique twist to your Thanksgiving celebration this year and make it the best one yet!