Thanksgiving Day is a time for us to reunite with our loved ones, cheer on our hometown teams at football games, spectate parades, and of course, gobble down turkey, squash, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie.
...or at least, that's how it's supposed to go. Our real holidays aren't always as picture perfect as a Norman Rockwell painting. They can be stressful when you burn the turkey or you drive through holiday traffic for hours or Auntie Mary is making her snide backhanded comments about how you two still aren't married — all which makes it even more important to snuggle up with your SO for support.
To get yourselves in the spirit, here are some ways to celebrate the holiday together!
1. Visit A Historical Reenactment
History geeks? Famously, there is a reenactment of the first Thanksgiving every year on the shores of Plymouth, Massachusetts, but you can experience the real history of the holiday firsthand by partaking in one of many reenactments across the country from the Billings Farm and Museum in Woodstock, Vermont, to Thanksgiving Point in Lehi, Utah.
2. Go For A Countryside Drive
With the holidays coming up, it's perfectly excusable to want some alone time. Whisk yourselves away for a romantic getaway (to take a breather before the hordes of in-laws, siblings and cousins start knocking on your door). Pack a small picnic. Stepping outdoors, breathing in the crisp autumn air and taking in the breathtaking foliage. You'll feel reinvigorated enough to tackle Thanksgiving dinner at your folks' (or especially, your in-laws').
3. Work Off The Turkey Pounds!
You know you're going to gobble down on Turkey Day anyway and even if you say you're on a diet, that pumpkin cheesecake is going to tempt you otherwise. So make it a guilt-free indulgence by getting into a workout groove together beforehand! It's already been scientifically proven that couples who sweat together, stay together, and you'll be way ahead on that new year fitness resolution! Make it fun by jogging through the park on a brisk morning or hiking a mountain during sunset. Who knew that working out could be so romantic?
4. Make A Feathered Friend
Thanksgiving is all about one thing: turkey. But if you're both animal lovers and would rather not partake in the "digging in" part of the holiday, why not save a turkey instead? You can visit a turkey sanctuary, and adopt your own turkey. No, you don't have to bring the little guy home, but
as a sponsor, you'll receive a special certificate with a photo of and fun details about your newly saved turkey. You'll both get that warm, fuzzy feeling of doing a good deed and rescue an oft-overlooked animal!
5. Have A Private Thanksgiving Dinner For Two
Standing in line at the supermarket for three hours toting a basket of last-minute Thanksgiving groceries is the stuff of romance, right? No, that's what we thought. Instead, get your goodies ahead of time fresh from a farm stand and surprise your SO with a T-Day feast for two! This is especially memorable if you have to spend the holiday separate from each other. Be sure to include a few sexy touches like Thanksgiving sangria. You can taste-test your recipes together before the big day!
6. Start A "Giving" Tradition Together
It's a time of giving to loved ones as well as those who are not as fortunate. Start a seasonal tradition of picking at least one charitable act to do together as a couple. It can be anything — from walking in a charity marathon to making a sizable donation to a fundraiser to volunteering at your local soup kitchen — but by actively getting involved with your community, you'll be bonding and sharing the love with others.
7. Get Crafty
Remember those turkey hands you used to cut out and paste together as a little kid? Well, who says you can't still have fun with crafts as a grownup? Get yourselves in the spirit of the holiday with festive garlands, painted gourds and of course, delectable Thanksgiving-themed adult goodies! At least, you'll have your table decorations covered for surprise family visits!
8. Show Your Thanks For Each Other!
Yes, it's simple. Yes, it's cheesy. But part of the holiday is simply showing gratitude for the small, every day blessings in your life ... and that includes your significant other! Over the course of the season, jot down little notes on things you appreciate about each other. Maybe you appreciate how he cooks dinner when you've had a terrible day or he loves your back-rubs. These tiny "thank you's" turn into big gestures of love ... and isn't that what the season is all about?
More juicy stories from YourTango: