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 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. 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