Thanksgiving is approaching, and it’s a perfect opportunity for your kids to enjoy some much needed down time. By this point, kids and teens are several months into their school year, so an extended holiday weekend will give families some much needed R and R. Yes, some are doing quite a bit of cooking over the holiday, but that’s a great opportunity to reconnect with your kids.
Whoever is in charge of baking the magnificent Thanksgiving feast might appreciate help from the kids. There are regular dishes served each and every year, so why not let your kids dive into some good old-fashioned baking. Now, if your kids aren’t interested in taking part in the preparation of the meal, then they might enjoy some great shows about food. Yes, this might make their mouths water in anticipation of the great feast, but they’ll possibly spark an interest in helping mom or dad in the kitchen.
COOKING SHOWS TO WATCH
This dessert-making competition pits four teams of two against each other. The judges aren’t there to embarrass the competitors. They offer praise or suggestions on how to make the dish better. Along with seeing the baking process and some wildly elaborate confections, this show generates a pure sense of joy for families to sit down together and enjoy.
The Great British Baking Show
When it comes to a competition, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen so many people helping others in a pinch. There are so many instances when bakers are needing to complete their bake and others step in to help. The ability to help someone finish, and make their best product, means helping someone who might beat them. If this doesn’t resonate to any family member as, “you want to get beat by the best,” then I don’t know what will. This show presents a wonderful example of healthy competition.
I’ll Have What Phil’s Having / Somebody Feed Phil
Phil Rosenthal leads viewers on amazing journeys to different cities around the world. Along the way, he learns about different foods and cultures during his travels. Phil Rosenthal is one of the most engaging individuals you’ll ever hope to see on the small screen. The creator of Everybody Loves Raymond is pure magic on the screen, and you get to watch him shine as he indulges in what looks like some of the best plates of food you’ll ever hope to eat.
During these episodes, the host will also connect with his parents, via video chat, which is an amazing component to the show that gives viewers a sense of family and the importance attached to staying connected with those we love. This is a great thing for kids to see, because it’s light hearted and fun, and it shows the type of connection families can still hold onto as they get older.
All of these shows, except for I’ll Have What Phil’s Having are currently available on Netflix.
FOOTBALL TO WATCH
Every year, millions of people turn on the television to watch the annual Thanksgiving games from the NFL. The Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys host each and every year since 1966 (with a few exceptions), while the tradition of Thanksgiving football started in 1920. The Detroit Lions became the frontrunner for these two teams hosting each year starting in 1934 and continuing to this day, with the only gap occurring during World War II.
This year’s schedule includes the following matchups:
Detroit Lions vs. Chicago Bears at 12:30 PM
Dallas Cowboys vs. Buffalo Bills at 4:30 PM
Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans Saints at 8:20 PM
The third game on Thanksgiving was added as a staple in 2006 as a night game. If you’re interested in looking back on all of the previous games that have happened on this holiday, check out the results listed on the Pro Football Hall of Fame website.
MOVIE TO GO SEE
The purpose behind Thanksgiving, at least to highlight in my family, is to talk about what you’re grateful for. This is also something we try to discuss each night at dinner, but for this particular holiday, it’s emphasized more as we spend time with family and friends. So, what better way to get that same feeling than to go see a movie based on the life of Fred Rogers.
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Length: 1 hour, 48 minutes
Release Date: November 22, 2019
Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood was a staple in households for decades and his empowering inspiration came from the simplest and best of messages: “Be kind.” In a world where things can be divisive and listening might be becoming a lost art, watching a movie based off a symbol of hope might be the perfect reason to feel thankful this holiday season.
“This is what I give. I give an expression of care every day to each child, to help him realize that he is unique… I feel that if we in public television can only make it clear that feelings are mentionable and manageable, we will have done a great service for mental health.” – Fred Rogers, 1969
As we get closer to Thanksgiving and we all sit around a small or large table, spending time with our loved ones, I want to wish everyone a safe, healthy, and happy holiday. I hope everyone will find time to enjoy that time with family and friends by engaging in some activity that lets you cherish the time spent together. For me, I look forward to having my kids help make green bean casserole and pouring gravy over any food that’s appropriate to pour over. During that time, I also hope my kids will want me to read them a story or perhaps play a game together or watch a movie like Miracle on 34th Street or Home Alone. Because let’s be honest, my family laughs every time the bad guys get the stuffing knocked out of them.
Have a wonderful and happy Thanksgiving.
Until next time, happy parenting and happy geeking.