family fun

Thanksgiving: Meal Time and Family Traditions

mommeal timefamily funfamily fun-traditions

I always love hearing about how families celebrate Thanksgiving. Activities, food, and traditions can differ vastly from family to family.

I am the oldest of six children. And, I have more than 20 cousins on each side of the family. When we used to live closer together, our Thanksgiving day celebrations would be large and loud. Now, they are smaller, not really quieter, but one thing has stayed the same: the food and traditions.

Yesterday, we went to my sister, Cari's, house. All of my brothers and sisters but one was able to make it. There were 13 of us total, including our 7 children.

Our Thanksgiving Dinner

We enjoyed a spread including:

  • Jennie-O turkey
  • Honeybaked ham
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Gravy
  • Both regular and gluten free stuffing
  • A veggie tray with ranch dip
  • A humongous bowl of olives (Humongous!)
  • Corn (a first for our Thanksgiving meal)
  • Sweet potatoes (Ruth Chris's recipe... mmmmmm!)
  • Sauerkraut
  • Homemade rolls
  • Two kinds of pie: Pumpkin Chiffon and Chocolate

Everything sounds pretty typical until you get to the sauerkraut, right? Our family has sauerkraut at all holidays and major occasions.

This year, my brother in law, Jonah, grew cabbage in his garden and canned it to make sauerkraut. It was ready to eat just in time for Thanksgiving. If you've never tried it, you wouldn't believe how delicious sauerkraut is paired with a scoop of mashed potatoes. Sounds weird, I know! But, it's delicious.

Our Thanksgiving Traditions

Here is how we have fun on Thanksgiving day:

  • Put olives on all of our fingers.
  • All contribute to the meal. (I always make the veggie tray!)
  • Take a nap after the meal and before dessert.
  • Go see a movie together after dessert. (This year, we saw The Muppets. Manamanam!)

More than anything, we always have a great time and are grateful we're together as a family.

How did you celebrate Thanksgiving? What dishes were included in your Thanksgiving dinner? What fun traditions did you start or continue?

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.

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