Overwhelmed with Thanksgiving dinner preparations? Get a head start by making delicious and easy appetizer recipes now. By doing a little cooking ahead of time, you can avoid the hassle on Thanksgiving Day. Our make-ahead appetizers include recipes that can be prepared the day before or up to six months ahead of the holiday.View Slideshow
Kids love to lend a helping hand when it comes to decorating the table with easy Thanksgiving crafts. These easy-to-make Thanksgiving crafts ideas keep the spirit of the season front and center for children of all ages (and help hungry kids stay occupied until dinner is on the table). From place cards to centerpieces, these easy Thanksgiving crafts for kids will get your home ready for the big day.
Thanksgiving is a great season to celebrate what you and your kids are grateful for, and an easy way to do so is with a do-it-yourself daily thanks calendar. Attach mini crafts envelopes to a painted piece of foam core and insert in an inexpensive picture frame. Each day, have each family member write a note detailing what they are thankful for. Place in that day's envelope, then open the envelopes during Thanksgiving dinner.
A great way to lure kids to their seats while Thanksgiving dinner is being prepared is to offer them a fun activity. To make this fun Thanksgiving craft, cut out two circles from construction paper for the body and head, and accent with paper to create the eyes, beak, and feet. Ask each child to create feathers from paper scraps, googly eyes, chenille stems, and other small crafts items. Then use the decorated turkeys as charming place mats.
This cute Thanksgiving craft for kids will help keep in mind the history of the holiday. Print the pattern; assemble as shown. Transform the paper craft into a napkin clip by adhering a clothespin (clip side down) to the back of the crafts-stick mast. Clip the paper Mayflower to a bright blue cloth napkin to give the appearance that the ship is sailing.
While you're putting the last minute touches on dinner, occupy hungry kids with a simple craft for the Thanksgiving table. Supply kids with markers, glue, buttons, felt pieces, and paper, and ask them to make fun place cards for soon-to-be-arriving guests.
Editor's Tip: Provide a guest list for kids so they'll know exactly how to spell Aunt Suzanne's name.
Kids will have a great time with this fun Thanksgiving craft. Simply download the free pattern and print one for each child. Give to them to color and fill out ahead of time or at the table (help the younger kids fill out their information). Once dinner is served, have them tell guests some of the interesting things they've recorded.
Turn this cute paper turkey into a crayon holder for the kids' table at Thanksgiving dinner. Using the pattern cutouts, punch two holes in the tail-feather pieces and run a string through them before adhering the pieces to the body. Tie the turkey to a rubber band and wind the band around a handful of crayons. Use the crayon bundle to support the turkey.
Blank jigsaw kits -- found at crafts and hobby stores -- give kids the opportunity to make their own customized puzzle. Encourage them to draw Thanksgiving-theme pictures on their puzzle pieces. Later, kids can trade puzzles and spend time putting them together.
Ask kids to write down what they're thankful for on leaves cut from paper. Then place them in a scrapbook and continue the tradition next Thanksgiving. As the compilation grows, you'll have a time capsule of memories to look back on year after year.
This place card offers adults the perfect opportunity to discuss the history of Thanksgiving. To make, download and print the pattern. Cut a curved slit in the base of the hat and insert the top to give it dimension. Outline the hatband and buckle using a black pen, and use a silver gel pen to define the curve at the top of the hat. Use the black pen to write in each guest's name.
Kids will love creating a wreath that shows off their reasons to be thankful. Wrap a simple foam wreath with brown linen. Fray edges for a rustic tone, and secure the linen ends to the back of the wreath with glue or a pin. Print out the leaf patterns on decorative paper. Add each family member's name to a leaf using a printer, rub-on letters from the crafts store, or a marker. Cut out the leaves. Ask the kids to write words of thanks, and attach each leaf to the wreath with a decorative pin or a dab of crafts glue.
Kids will love making this simple and cute Thanksgiving craft. Download and print the pattern; cut out and assemble as shown above using dimensional foam for a 3-D effect using decorative-edge scissors for feathers with texture. Write the name of each guest on the turkey's banner.
Help your kids create a centerpiece filled with Thanksgiving gratitude. To make the turkey, print out the head, beak, wattle, and feather patterns. Cut out and trace on decorative papers. Fold beak along dotted lines as indicated. Glue beak and wattle to head, using the photo as a guide. Add googly eyes from a crafts store. Glue to a large pinecone to form the turkey's body. Cut out feathers, crease lengthwise, and snip fringe edges. Encourage your child (and grown-up guests, too) to write their blessings on a tail feather. Tuck each feather into the pinecone body to create the turkey's colorful tail.