Galactic Hot Dogs

Crafts for Every Holiday

Thanksgiving: November

What is the true meaning of Thanksgiving? Do you really know its history? Who made Thanksgiving a national holiday and where do the foods and customs we have today originate?

You may believe the way we celebrate Thanksgiving is the way the Pilgrims did -- but you're wrong. Our celebration actually dates back to Victorian times. The modern observance of Thanksgiving was the result of a campaign initiated by Sarah Josepha Hale, the editor of Godey's Lady's Book, a popular Victorian women's magazine. Mrs. Hale almost single-handedly created the Thanksgiving we celebrate today. Before her efforts, Thanksgiving was an irregularly celebrated occasion that differed from state to state.

Often, with so much attention focused on Christmas, Hannukah, and Kwanzaa, Thanksgiving is given only cursory attention. Don't let this happen in your family!

Have each member of the family create a gratitude journal they can keep all year long, perhaps even daily. Each day, write down five things you are thankful for. It may be difficult to think of five things at first, but as you start looking more closely at the little things, you'll have difficulty sticking with only five (so don't!).

At Thanksgiving dinner, have each person write five things they're grateful for on a slip of paper, roll it up, and secure with a piece of raffia or some other natural material. Collect the scrolls, mix them up, and then redistribute. Have each member of your celebration read their scroll aloud.

Make sure you invite people for dinner who have nowhere to go on Thanksgiving. It's really not much trouble to set the table for one or two more people. Prepare a box of food with your children and take it to someone who is less fortunate or perhaps can't get out to celebrate.


Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Crafts with Kids © 1998 by Georgene Lockwood. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


Teens and E-Cigarettes: 6 Things You Must Know
For the first time in a generation, tobacco use has risen among the nation's youth, due to the rising use of e-cigarettes. Learn more about the dangerous and addictive e-cigarette trend, and get tips to talk to your teen.

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, brought to you by Galactic Hot Dogs.

Printable Lists of the Top 100 Baby Names
Need help with baby name ideas? Use our printable list of the top 100 girl names and top 100 boy names of 2015 to help you brainstorm and narrow down your favorites.

Registered for Kindergarten — Now What?
Wondering what to do now that you've signed your child up for kindergarten? Try our award-winning Kindergarten Readiness app! This easy-to-use checklist comes with games and activities to help your child build essential skills for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Facebook icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks