In 1621, long before the birth of the United States of America, the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared a bountiful harvest feast. More than two centuries later, in the midst of the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November. Each year, Americans celebrate this special day on the fourth Thursday in November to give thanks for the many opportunities, people, and blessings that we are fortunate to have in our lives.
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How to Celebrate Thanksgiving
1. Volunteer at a soup kitchen
Before sitting down to enjoy a nice warm meal at home, invite the family to join you to serve the community by volunteering at a local soup kitchen. It's a great way to give back to those less fortunate and provides and opportunity for the whole family to do something good.
2. Bake a pie
Pies are a one of the classic Thanksgiving staples. Pecan, pumpkin, apple, cherry — you literally cannot go wrong. Pre-heat the oven, throw on an apron, and get cooking!
3. Start a take-out tradition
Cooking a Thanksgiving meal can take hours. Save yourself hours and the mess, by starting a new tradition and ordering take out! It can be the Chinese restaurant down the street, Indian curry, even your favorite pizza place. And tip well! The day is all about being grateful.
Why We Love Thanksgiving
A. The food
Everyone will agree the many dishes, meats, and beverages consumed on this day are the huge reason why they break their diet. The Thanksgiving spread is usually full of mashed potatoes with gravy, buttered vegetables, warm pumpkin pie, and other indulgent foods. Don't forget your stretchy pants!
B. Family and friends
Thanksgiving is a time when friends and family gather to celebrate what they are thankful for. For some people, it's an occasion to be with family you don't see often. For others, it's a time to get all their friends together for food and fun.
Thanksgiving is all about tradition. From the foods you eat (it's not Thanksgiving without turkey!) to who gets to cut up the bird (Uncle John or no one!), the day is full of symbolism and tradition. Many families watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York or football games. Some even play football games of their own! The great thing is, no matter what your traditions are, they're correct, because they are yours.