Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Potluck Appetizer

We are only days away from our Thanksgiving vacation at my kids’ school. This year the lower grades are having a potluck to celebrate and learn about the first Thanksgiving. I have to bring a potluck appetizer for my children to share. I usually bring something like a veggie tray, but that has already been promised by another family. Instead, I decided to branch out and try something fun.

Thank you to Crafts A La Mode for this fun twist on the cheeseball. This Thanksgiving Turkey Cheese Ball will impress all of those elementary schoolers. It works because my kids and their friends are obsessed with cheese and crackers, the fact that it looks like a little turkey will make it even more of a hit!

Thanksgiving potluck appetizer

Head on over to Crafts A La Mode for the full recipe and tutorial. I really like this idea because it makes it look like I have really tried hard to do something for the potluck when in reality I am very behind this year and I have only just started planning for the potluck which is tomorrow afternoon. Sometimes simple and fun appetizers like this one work out perfectly. It has very little prep, and comes with a lot of pizazz! What are some go to things you bring for potlucks? Do you have a recipe that is simple and impressive?

Giving Thanks: Make a Gratitude Wall

This yer my family has been very lucky and privileged to do a lot of traveling and see a lot of different places. We made it to two big cities on our travel bucket list. We did a lot of sight seeing and learned a lot of historical things about the cities, and our country.

As with any travel we spent a lot of money, more than I would have chosen to spend. But we are very lucky to work hard and had the opportunity to put money away for these trips. Not everyone can do that. While on our trips we also saw a lot of people, people from all sorts of different walks of life. Since we visited big cities we also so a lot of people that live in abundance, and those that live with nothing. It brought up some questions with my kids. They were curious. They had seen homeless and people that lived on the streets before. But big cities have so many it is hard not to feel and see the difference.

When we returned home we began talking about things that can be done for people who are not as fortunate as we are. My children’s school does a toy drive for less fortunate kids every holiday season. We have already chosen to donate for each child attending the school. However, we also wanted to do something to remind us just why we are as fortunate as we are. We wanted to thank the universe for the life we have been lucky enough to live.

In the past we have done a thankful turkey, we put little paper feathers in it that we all write something we are thankful for every day of November. However, a mouse invaded our attic this year and our poor turkey was destroyed. So this year I was in search of something new. And lo and behold I found the Gratitude Wall, thank you to Livingly.com for the incredible inspiration.

Livingly.com created this simple version here. We have a large chalkboard in our living room and have chosen to use it as our board. But we have chosen to write something we are grateful for every day. Today I wrote that I was thankful for my healthy family. Health has always been a struggle this time of year, and this year I am thankful that we are able to enjoy the season with our health intact. What would you write for today?

 

Thanksgiving Facts

Looking for some fun ways to impress the people at your table this thanksgiving? Here are some fast Thanksgiving facts that will impress and baffle your guests. Why not wow them with your vast, and seemingly useless, knowledge of not only thanksgiving but turkeys as well.

Thanksgiving facts

Thanksgiving facts:

  • The first Thanksgiving was held in the autumn of 1621 and included 50 Pilgrims and 90 Wampanoag Indians. The first Thanksgiving lasted three days. Many historians believe that only five women were present at that first Thanksgiving.  Many women settlers didn’t survive that difficult first year in the U.S.
  • Thanksgiving didn’t become a national holiday until over 200 years later! Sarah Joseph Hale, the woman who actually wrote the classic song “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” convinced President Lincoln in 1863 to make Thanksgiving a national holiday. She wrote letters for 17 years campaigning for this to happen.
  • No turkey on the menu at the first Thanksgiving: Historians say that no turkey was served at the first Thanksgiving! What was on the menu? Deer or venison, ducks, geese, oysters, lobster, eel and fish. They probably did eat pumpkins but no pumpkin pies. The pilgrims also didn’t eat mashed potatoes or cranberry relish. They probably ate cranberries. And no, Turduckens (a turkey stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken) were nowhere to be found during that first Thanksgiving.
  • No forks at the first Thanksgiving! The first Thanksgiving was eaten with spoons and knives but no forks! That’s right, forks weren’t even introduced to the Pilgrims until 10 years later. Forks weren’t a popular utensil until the 18th century.
  • Thanksgiving is the reason for TV dinners! In 1953, Swanson had so much extra turkey (260 tons) that a salesman told them they should package it onto aluminum trays with other sides like sweet potatoes and the first TV dinner was born!
  • Thanksgiving was almost a fast — not a feast! The early settlers gave thanks by praying and abstaining from food.  They planned on doing to celebrate their first harvest, that is, until the Wampanoag Indians joined them and (lucky for us!) turned their fast into a three-day feast!

Thanksgiving Facts

  • Presidential pardon of a turkey: Each year, the president of the U.S pardons a turkey. He spares it from being eaten for Thanksgiving dinner.  The first turkey pardon ceremony started with President Truman in 1947. President Obama pardoned a 45-pound turkey named Courage. Courage was has flown to Disneyland and served as Grand Marshal of the park’s Thanksgiving Day parade!
  • Why is Thanksgiving the fourth Thursday in November? President Abe Lincoln said Thanksgiving would be the fourth Thursday in November.  In 1939 President Roosevelt moved it up a week hoping it would help the shopping season during the Depression era. It never caught on and it was changed back two years later.
  • The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade began in 1924 with 400 employees marching from Convent Ave to 145th street in New York City. No large balloons were at this parade, as it featured only live animals from Central Park Zoo.
  • Turkey isn’t responsible for drowsiness or the dreaded “food coma.” So what is? Scientists say that extra glass of wine, the high-calorie meal or relaxing after a busy work schedule is what makes you drowsy!
  • How did the tradition of watching football on Thanksgiving start? The NFL started the Thanksgiving Classic games in 1920.  Since then the Detroit Lions and the Dallas Cowboys have hosted games on Turkey Day. In 2006, a third game was added with different teams hosting.

Thanksgiving Facts

  • Wild turkeys can run 20 miles per hour when they are scared.  Domesticated turkeys are bred to be heavier and can’t run quite that fast.
  • Benjamin Franklin wanted the turkey to be the national bird, not the eagle.
  • Americans eat 46 million turkeys each Thanksgiving.
  • Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin’s first meal in space after walking on the moon was foil packets with roasted turkey.
  • The heaviest turkey on record, according to the Guinness Book of Records, weighs 86 pounds.
  • Californians consume the most turkey in the U.S. on Thanksgiving Day!
  • Female turkeys (called hens) do not gobble. Only male turkeys gobble.
  • The average turkey for Thanksgiving weighs 15 pounds.
  • Campbell’s soup created green bean casserole for an annual cookbook 50 years ago. It now sells $20 million worth of cream of mushroom soup.

Thank you Allparenting.com for the incredibly cool Thanksgiving facts!