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5 Fun family traditions to start for Thanksgiving

Kori Ellis is an editor and writer based in San Antonio, TX, where she lives with her husband and four children. At SheKnows, she writes about parenting, fashion, beauty and other lifestyle topics. Additionally, Kori has been published i...

Make Thanksgiving memories

Thanksgiving day is full of wonderful traditions, from eating turkey to watching the big game on TV. This year, start some new traditions of your own. Your family will enjoy these activities for many Thanksgivings to come.

Family at donation center

Plan a volunteer project

Thanksgiving is the time of year when we give thanks and show gratitude for our family, friends and all of our blessings. This year, volunteer as a family to give back to a charity organization or someone in need in the days or weeks leading up to Thanksgiving. Plan a family volunteer project such as a helping Habitat for Humanity build a home, donating time to a your local soup kitchen or children's shelter, making cards and gifts for senior citizens, or taking in a person who doesn't have a place to go for the holidays.

Read more about volunteer projects to do together with your kids >>

Thanksgiving gratitude tablecloth

A plain tablecloth can be transformed into a family heirloom that will be cherished for generations. Place fabric markers around the Thanksgiving table and encourage guests to sign the tablecloth. They can also write a short blessing or message, and be sure to include the date. Each Thanksgiving, add more to the tablecloth and read over the notes from the previous years.

Thanksgiving football

Many people watch football on Thanksgiving, but how about playing it? Organize a family flag football game and play at your local park (or even your backyard) on Thanksgiving morning. Flag football is fun for boys and girls of all ages and keeps your family active. Split your family into two teams or if you have a small family, plan a game against a neighbor's family.

Learn more ways to keep your family active >>

Create a memory video

This year for a fun Thanksgiving activity, break out the video camera. Have each person at the table talk about their favorite event, memory or blessing from the last year, as well as a hope or wish for the upcoming year. Be sure that every person at Thanksgiving dinner participates. You can send a copy of the video to any family members who weren't able to share the day, or upload the video to your family website or digital scrapbook. Next Thanksgiving, play the old video and make a new one.

Day after Thanksgiving brunch

Host brunch the morning after Thanksgiving. It's a great way to get rid of all those delicious leftovers, and enjoy a little more time with family, friends and out-of-town guests. You can create a variety of yummy recipes with Thanksgiving leftovers. Make turkey omelets or turkey breakfast burritos, or try this stuffing scramble.

Check out these creative recipes with Thanksgiving leftovers >>

Traditional vs. modern Thanksgiving

More Thanksgiving fun

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