Texas Living

New Thanksgiving Traditions

By Haley Shapley 11.12.14

As the name implies, Thanksgiving is a time to take inventory of all that you have to be thankful for. Many families say grace around the table, but there are tons of other easy and creative ways to express your gratitude — maybe one of these will become your new holiday tradition:

The tree of thankfulness. Gather fallen twigs from your yard or buy supplies from a craft store to make a tree of thankfulness. Cut leaves out of construction paper, punch a hole near the top of each leaf, and attach a yarn loop. Then have everyone take a leaf and write something they’re thankful for. Hang them on the tree, which becomes the centerpiece of the table. During dinner, take turns pulling off the leaves and reading them.

Show and tell. Tell everyone beforehand to bring one item to dinner that represents something they appreciate. Go around the table and have everyone explain what they brought and what it means to them this year.

Scrapbook memories. After the big feast, put together a few pages on the dinner — what was served, who was there, and what everyone was most thankful for. Continue compiling every year, and you’ll have a lovely retrospective of the special day over time.

Appreciate each other. Break out the warm-and-fuzzies and have everyone say something nice about another person at the table. Aunt Ida will love hearing that her big hugs are worthy of praise, and your grandpa will be glad to know his dependability whenever you needed help moving has always been appreciated.

Want more holiday tips? Check out our holiday travel survival guide!