When I was growing up, Thanksgiving meant two things: turkey and television. Sure, we got together with family, but I don't really remember doing anything with all of those extended relatives. We just ate a ginormous meal together and then plopped down in front of the TV to watch Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.

For various reasons, I want my girls to grow up with a different kind of Thanksgiving. First of all, I have no desire to vegetate in front of the TV after eating a huge meal. I'd rather get up and move around a bit, and I want my girls to get to know the extended family who they don't see that often. I want them to talk, laugh, and maybe even throw a ball with their cousins. I want them to have memories of more than just turkey and TV.

If the weather is nice on the big day, just about any outdoor activity is fair game: football, softball, tag, hula hooping, you name it. We might even try this wacky Turkey Trot game if everyone's up for it.

But even if the weather is not delightful, there are plenty of things that we can all do indoors together that don't involve staring at a screen. Thanksgiving Bingo is a cool idea. So is wall football (sort of a cross between football and pin the tail on the donkey,) popcorn relay races and chopstick pass along.  

Indoors or out, I know my family is headed for a good time this Thanksgiving. And I'm already looking forward to day filled with family, friends and fun.

See also:

Thanksgiving games

Thanksgiving crafts

Thanksgiving recipes

History of Thanksgiving

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