5 Ways To Keep Kids Occupied On Thanksgiving

Do your kids love helping in the kitchen? The concept is great and all—bonding with your children by making delicious meals together in a magical kitchen that doesn’t get dirty, and no one’s arguing over who gets to stir the bowl because you’re all too busy singing Kumbaya together. Just like a commercial!

But then reality sinks back in and you realize it’s Thanksgiving, your in-laws will be arriving at noon, and you still have a turkey, 10 sides and 20 pies to prepare. So if you want to avoid an uprising of epic proportions upon the arrival of your extended family, it’s probably best to keep the kiddos occupied with other things so you can handle the kitchen situation in a more…seamless fashion.

“How can I keep my kids out of the kitchen?” you ask. Well, we found a great list of ideas over at ElizabethStreet for you. Take a look, and also share with us what usually works for you! Inquiring moms want to know 🙂

1.Offical Coat Check Attendant: As you put the finishing touches on the meal, have your little ones greet people at the door and be the official coat check addendents. Make them feel extra important by making a few coat check tickets with these labels. Don’t forgot to provide a stool so they can hang up the coats easily!

2. The VIP Photographer (with Press Pass!) Print out the words Press Pass on cardstock, tape one to each kid, and give them a camera. It could be as simple has handing them an old iphone, but what about splurging on this Instax Instant Photocamera? Have an older sibling create a collage of their images—a wonderful way to remember the holiday!

3. The Interior Decorator: Time to get crafting! Paper Source has created super easy craft kits for kids this holiday season. Check out their Paper Chain Garland Kit, Gingerpaper House Kit, and the Holiday Elf Kit. Once the day is over, your house will be ready for the next holiday.

4. Movie Usher: After dinner, have your kids hand out tickets to watch a favorite Thanksgiving movie: A Miracle on 34th Street, for example, is a perfect segue to December. Will you be watching the original or the new version? Let the kids decide!

5. Actor’s Studio: Have the kids browse through a few Thanksgiving books to find the origins of this special holiday and recreate the events in a play. I just bought The Thanksgiving Story because of it’s beautiful illustrations and solid information. It has everything needed to put on an fabulous performance. For costumes? Check out these beautiful pilgrim costumes for girls and one for boys, and Native American costumes for girls and boys. Or just make your own! 

These 5 ideas were originally published on ElizabethStreet.com. For more from ElizabethStreet, follow them on Facebook and Twitter!