How to Manage Your Family During Thanksgiving

How to Manage Your Family During Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a time to spend with family and loved ones while you enjoy some delicious turkey and other flavorful dishes. This time of the year can be a lot of fun as everyone waits in anticipation for Christmas Day. But for some families, Thanksgiving can also be a bit difficult, especially when it comes to trying to develop feelings of togetherness and bonding. So how do you organize your family and keep everyone on the same page? Read on to learn how you can create a wonderful memory for you and your entire family this holiday and for many Thanksgivings to come.

Get the Kids Involved

children helping prepare thanksgiving dinner

You might remember being stuck at the kid’s table when you were younger at Thanksgiving time. To make your children feel more involved, have them help you do a few things in preparation for the big day. Whether they work with you to make dessert or help you cook the mashed potatoes, involving the kids in the meal prep is a great way to make them feel included. It’s also a wondering way to spend some quality bonding time with them. Ask your kids about their opinions on the table setting and show them that you really value their input.

Keep the Conversation Light

peaceful talks at thanksgiving dinner

We all have that family member who loves to talk about politics around the dinner table. To prevent this from happening to you, try your best to keep all conversations as lighthearted as possible. If someone does happen to bring up an uncomfortable subject, do your best to deflect the situation and turn the conversation toward another topic. Remember to remain calm even if you disagree with that combative family member. Offer to refill their beverage or get up from the table to warm the dinner rolls until things calm down.

Make Time for More Than Just the Meal

bringing the turkey to the table

While the meal is the main event at Thanksgiving dinner, you can create a sense of togetherness in other ways, too. Organize a few fun games everyone can play either before or after dinner. Games are a fantastic way to get to know each other, reconnect, and relax. You can also watch the big football game or the Thanksgiving Day parade as a family. Have the kids go through the latest holiday ads and talk about the toys they hope to receive this Christmas. These little things are a great way to create lasting memories and maybe even start a new family tradition!

Set Some Boundaries

toast with wine glasses

You’ll probably spend the bulk of your day cooking, serving, eating, and cleaning. Eventually, you’re going to need some time to unwind. Set a time limit when you expect everyone to be on their way so you can clean up and relax. Let everyone know in advance when dinner will be officially “over.” Another way to set boundaries is to either refuse to serve alcoholic beverages on Thanksgiving or limit each adult to a single glass of wine or two drinks maximum. When you set these boundaries ahead of time, your guests know what to expect and will be more prone to stay on their best behavior. Remember, the main purpose of Thanksgiving is to enjoy each other’s company and take part in a wonderful meal along with wonderful memories.