1. Table Thanksgiving Trivia
Write out one Thanksgiving Trivia Question on a piece of paper with the answer on the back. Place a trivia card at each place setting. Throughout the meal, each person has a chance to ask their question then reveal the correct answer.
Q: What is a male turkey called? A: Tom
Q: What ship did the Pilgrims sail on to America? A: The MayflowerYou can find lots of suggestions by Googling “Thanksgiving Trivia.” Like this one.
2. Video Chat with Faraway Relative
Skype, Face Time, or Google Hangout the people whom you wish could be with you for Thanksgiving.
3. Have a Mini Pumpkin Hunt
This game is great for the little ones and can be done either inside or outside.
4. Have a Board Game Tournament
There are literally hundreds of board games out there! Buying a new game each year can make a fun family tradition, but pulling out the classics can be just as fun, too. Whether it’s Connect Four, Battleship, Monopoly, Balderdash, or Would You Rather, it’s bound to be exciting.
5. Make & Frost Sugar Cookies
Make a couple batches of Sugar Cookies and simple Royal Frosting, grab some cookie-cutters, sprinkles, and food coloring and get creative with those cookies!
6. Have a Cooking/Baking Contest
This is a great activity for adults. Gather together random ingredients and challenge each other with a cooking contest. This requires a lot of creativity and some experience with cooking. Or for a simpler approach, have a cookie or pie baking contest. Grandpa and Grandma can be the judges – just make sure it’s edible!
7. Paint Left-Over Pumpkins
After the family feast, gather all the decorations – pumpkins, acorns, pine cones, and gourds – and hand paint them.
8. Make a “Thankful” Banner
Have everyone write what they’re thankful for on a festive paper cutout (leaves, pumpkins, acorns, etc.). Write one thing per paper. Punch two holes at the top and string them together for a lovely banner. The longer the banner the more you are thankful!
9. Take a Walk
Walk to work up an appetite, or eat first then walk off the stuffing and mashed potatoes…whatever your fancy, it’s a relaxing time with the people you love.
10. Play Football
Even mom can put on her running shoes and throw a football from time to time! But if mud and tackling is not your thing or you lack enough players to make two teams, try playing the game “500” – one person lobs the football toward everyone while calling out a number (100, 200, 300, etc.) and the person who catches the ball earns the point value of that particular throw. The first to reach 500 gets to throw next.
11. Play “Musical” Charades
You can use instruments or your voice to play this game. Just like charades, divide up into teams and play or hum a tune until someone guesses correctly. Write some songs on scrap paper ahead of time so the game keeps moving.
Talk about all the adventures and memories of the past you have shared together. You’ll laugh; you’ll cry…it’ll be great fun!
13. Kids Talent Show -or- Skit-in-a-Bag
Whether your Thanksgiving is full of little ones, teenagers, or big people, getting together for an impromptu skit can be hilarious. Collect 20 or 30 random items and put them in a large paper bag. If your gathering is large, divide the group into two or three groups…it’s great to see how people can be so creative!
Item suggestions are balloons, socks, kitchen utensils, wigs, hats, paper & markers, miscellaneous clothing items, cotton balls, toilet paper, and whatever other items you have around the house. You can make each bag the same or pack them with different items.
For the little ones, have them sing a song, do a puppet show, or give them a topic they have to act out for everyone (like pretending to be Dad at work or the Pastor at church).
14. Our Family Tree
Have everyone stamp their hand print with finger paint on a big sheet of paper and write their name underneath. Cut them out and stick them up on the wall to display in family order. For families with adults you can do the research together and try to go as far back in your family lineage.
15. Complete a Puzzle
Large puzzles are nice to keep going throughout the day. You can work together or take turns. Puzzles are easy to take breaks from, too – you know, for pie or turkey leftovers. :o)