When the family’s in town for the holidays, it’s easy to sit in front of the TV and call that family time. But it’s so much more fun to get up, get out, and do something that gets everyone’s bodies and brains active.
While we love watching the big game on Thanksgiving Day, it’s also important to create some warm family memories during the holidays. Here are some of our favorite ways to entertain the whole family during Thanksgiving that don’t involve the TV.
Take the football outside
Once the leftovers are boxed up and the dishes are clean, gather the family for a fun outdoor activity that will help work off that second piece of pie. One long-standing tradition for many families is playing a friendly game of football in the yard or at a nearby park. If you’re more of a basketball family and have a hoop in your driveway, that works too. Keep things friendly and the rules relaxed for little ones and newbies. Kick things up a notch by creating team T-shirts a few weeks in advance, and be sure to snap some family photos for posterity.
Play a board game
If the weather isn’t cooperating, have an indoor activity planned just in case. Board games are a timeless tradition for family gatherings for a reason: it’s hard to go wrong with a fun, family-friendly game. Of course, you’ve always got the classics, like checkers, Monopoly and Scrabble. Apples to Apples is another family-friendly game that will get family members of all ages giggling. Other great games like HedBanz and Scattergories make excellent workouts for the brain and are sure get everyone in on the friendly competition.
Do a scavenger hunt
A great way to get kids of all ages involved in some non-TV time is with a scavenger hunt. Recruit some creative family members to come up with some fun clues and little treats for kids to uncover along the way. Be sure to adjust to the challenge level according to the kids’ age range, and challenge players to participate without their phones. The great thing about a scavenger hunt is that you can customize it to make it fun and interesting for your unique family. One of our favorite ideas is to turn the tables and put the kids in charge of creating the clues and letting the adults try to figure them out. Assign teams, pick leaders and have some prizes ready, and your family won’t even miss the TV.