When I lived with my mom, Thanksgiving was such a great, relaxing holiday. Now, I didn't have to get up early to prepare food but I did help my mom in the kitchen. I've always loved to cook. We didn't have a huge family gathering. Just my grandma and her boyfriend and our family.
Thanksgiving Dinner was always around 1pm. We'd watch the parade in the morning, eat, then relax. I remember playing cards with my mom and just hanging out. Whenever we felt hungry again, all those yummy leftovers were available for snacking.
Sometimes we would venture out to Kmart or Big Lots to do a little Christmas Shopping. It seems like everyone makes a big deal about retail stores being open on Thanksgiving now, but there were a few stores that have always been open on Thanksgiving where I live. When I was 16, I worked at an Ames' and had to work on Thanksgiving once. I volunteered for it which was stupid for the measly amount of extra pay I got but that was 15 years ago.
Anyways, back to my lazy Thanksgivings. It was fun to just relax and hang out with family. I really enjoyed helping my mom cook too.
Now Thanksgivings are still nice but they aren't the same. We are lucky in that we only have 1 house to visit on Thanksgiving. My mom schedules her holiday the weekend before so that everyone can attend.
I usually volunteer to make a side dish: sweet potatoes or deviled eggs. But the holiday just isn't the same. Especially since Mr. R is a nurse so we usually have to schedule our Thanksgiving Day around his work schedule.
My kids are getting old enough to play games though this year. Maybe after we get back from the in-laws on Thanksgiving, I'll start a game night tradition.