It’s odd, but the closer we get to Thanksgiving Day, the less we seem to pay attention to it. This is most likely a side effect of also getting closer to the Christmas season and the increased stress we tend to experience at this time of the year. We forget how much time there is between the holidays and rush to get everything done the weekend of Thanksgiving, rather than enjoying the time with our families.
This is a true travesty because Thanksgiving is a fantastic holiday. It has so much more to offer than a feast of turkey and stuffing. On this day, we get to sit down at the table and share what we’re grateful for. We get to focus on the positive aspects of our lives rather than the negatives that we’re usually drawn to. Plus, we get to wrack our brains trying to think of books, movies, songs, etc. that fit the holiday. Here are a few Thanksgiving themed items to help you out.
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Thanksgiving Themed Movies
For many, the morning of the holiday entails food prep and watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. Then, once the meal has commenced, our attention is turned to football. Not everyone enjoys both or either of these, however, but may still want to watch something that fits the day’s theme. Here are a few options:
- Trains, Planes, and Automobiles
- A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
- The House of Yes
- Hannah and Her Sisters
- Scent of a Woman
- Home for the Holidays
- You’ve Got Mail
- Pieces of April
- Funny People
- Alice’s Restaurant
- Nobody’s Fool
- Grumpy Old Men
- Free Birds
Some of these movies are better known than others, and there’s a good reason for this. A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving and Trains, Planes, and Automobiles are my personal recommendations. Yet, everyone has different tastes, so go ahead and take your pick.
Reading on Thanksgiving Day
Perhaps movies aren’t your thing, and you prefer the written word. Well, there are plenty of books that are dedicated to this wonderful day. Granted, most of them are children’s books, but who’s to say adults can’t read them as well?
- “Squanto’s Journey” – Joseph Bruchac
- “Happy Thanksgiving, Curious George” – H. A. Rey
- “Pete the Cat – The First Thanksgiving” – James Dean
- “Llama Llama Gives Thanks” – Anna Dewdney
- “The Firefighters’ Thanksgiving” – Maribeth Boelts
- “’Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving” – Dav Pilkey
- “I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie” – Alison Jackson
- “There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Turkey” – Lucille Colandro
- “Molly’s Pilgrim” – Barbara Cohen
For the Grownups:
- “All Roads” – Holly Schindler
- “Thanksgiving Angels” – Alice Duncan
- “Turkey Day Murder” – Leslie Meier
- “Strangers at the Feast” – Jennifer Vanderbas
- “The Ghost at the Table” – Suzanne Berne
- “Thanksgiving Night” – Richard Bausch
- “The Thanksgiving Visitor” – Truman Capote
- “The Harrowing” – Alexandra Sokolof
There’s nothing quite like a book about the holiday to help you get into the right mindset. As with the movies, some of these are better than others. You’ll have to decide which one is up your alley.
Songs of Thanksgiving
If your family is the singing type, you may find yourselves searching for songs befitting Thanksgiving Day. This is no easy feat considering how early we start hearing Christmas music each year. By the time Thanksgiving rolls around, radio stations have already been playing this music for weeks. It makes one wonder if Thanksgiving music even exists. It does.
- “We Gather Together” – Traditional
- “Over the River and Through the Woods” – Traditional
- “Thanksgiving Song” – Mary Chapin Carpenter
- “Turkey in the Straw” – Traditional
- “Thanksgiving” – Loudon Wainwright III
- “The Thanksgiving Song” – Adam Sandler
- “Thanksgiving Prayer” – Johnny Cash
There’s no reason singing can’t be as common on Thanksgiving as it is on Christmas. Unfortunately, there aren’t nearly as many. If you happen to be a songwriter, please start working on a few. The world desperately needs more.
Having a day dedicated to giving thanks is truly something special. It deserves more attention and should be held in higher esteem than it currently is. Whatever way you choose to celebrate this Thanksgiving Day, do so with gusto. Embrace the spirit of the holiday and show some appreciation for what you have. Be sure to enjoy the holiday and have a very happy Thanksgiving.