There’s a lot to think about when creating the Thanksgiving feast. From cooking and baking to getting the timing just right so everything is hot when it hits the table, it can be a lot of work. Enlisting help is a great way to simplify the process. Yes, even the kids can help a lot. Here are some of the things that they can do to help you this Thanksgiving:
Planning the Menu There are a few Thanksgiving staples that everyone expects on the table. For the rest of the meal, why not get your kids’ input? They can tell you whether they really want creamed corn or green bean casserole this year. Maybe you’ll find out that something like stuffing isn’t necessary to make this year. Work together to plan the menu and purchase the ingredients, so the kids feel apart of the meal and want to help make their dishes for the feast.
Setting the Table Setting the table is a relatively easy task that kids can help with on Thanksgiving. Give them everything they’ll need for the table settings: tablecloth, utensils, plates, cups, etc. Then, allow them to create placemats and other decorations for the table. You may find that the table looks more festive than ever.
Prepping the Food Although you probably don’t want your kids using knives and other dangerous appliances, there are plenty of tasks that your kids can do to help prepare dishes. For example, they could gather ingredients, read the recipe, rinse produce, mash potatoes, snap the ends off green beans, and stir everything together.
Creating Kid-Friendly Treats If you’d rather not have the kids help with dishes for the main meal, why not let them create some kid-friendly, festive treats instead? For example, you could make sugar cookies a few days before. Then, get out the frosting and candies for kids to decorate the cookies while you cook. You could also have them make turkeys out of donuts using edible eyes and candy corn for feathers. Of course, you could always dye Rice Krispy treats and have your kids shape them into pumpkins or drumsticks. Find a recipe that your kids will enjoy making and sharing with the rest of the guests.
Heading Up the Coat Check If you plan on inviting guests to your dinner, you could put the kids in charge of answering the door and helping the guests with their coats. It’s a simple task, but the kids will enjoy watching out the window for guests and helping them into your home.
Rinsing the Dishes As you work on each dish, you’re going to end up with a pile of dishes in your sink. So, let your kids help you. Fill up one side of the sink with soapy water, grab a stool for the little ones to use, and give them a sponge or washcloth. Be sure to demonstrate how to rinse a dish and dry it or put it in the dishwasher. You may end up with a watery mess, but your kids will have fun and simplify the cleanup process for you along the way. Allowing your kids to help you out on Thanksgiving Day may end up creating more work for you. However, Thanksgiving Day is a time to spend with the ones you love. So, by including them in the process, you can soak up family time, create new family traditions, and make some long-lasting memories.