Every year, we have the honor of hosting Thanksgiving in our home. There is something special about getting together with your family to feast on delicious homecooked food, watch some football and enjoy everyone’s company.
We normally host around 30 plus people, so we never have a traditional seated dinner for the adults. But the kids get their own table.
I believe making a special space for kids to enjoy Thanksgiving at their table enables them to express who they are and learn from peer interaction in a way that isn’t as easy when sitting among all the adults.
My kids’ table is different each year. I like to follow a theme, and I love to have something creative for the kids to do on it.
When you’re entertaining kids, keep your table settings simple. I am big on paper and plastic tableware. Make it pretty and make sure you can recycle the tablewear.
This year, I bought the most adorable Meri Meri Turkey paper plates and placed them over a white “charger” with a rose gold rim. I use air quotes because they aren’t chargers; they’re plastic plates. They work well and look beautiful, and I guarantee you the kids won’t miss the china.
I am huge on crafting and DIYs. This year, I decided to keep the table settings simple with coloring place mats.
If there’s one thing kids love to do, it’s coloring. Give them a coloring placemat and some crayons, and they are set. I think these place mats also give a fun youthful feel to the tablescape. I used miniature terra cotta plant pots to hold the crayons. I felt that it kept in theme with the setting and provided a fun and untraditional piece to the table.
I love to create a picturesque moment, so the centerpiece always needs to be kid-friendly and aesthetically pleasing. I used two pumpkins from Michaels that I hand painted a few years ago. I placed my sea grass and straw turkey that I purchased from Target on a cake stand for some height variation and set two candles between the turkey and the pumpkins. The kids felt that the items gave off a very grown-up vibe and loved it. The jute table runner over the white tablecloth anchored the centerpieces and completed the look.
Last year, we passed around a faux pumpkin and a pen and encouraged the kids to write something they are grateful for on it. This pumpkin was very special, and we still have it today. Anything you can do to encourage gratitude is fitting for Thanksgiving Day.
Editor’s Note: Read more about mom and DIY lifestyle blogger Mimi Markopoulos from Damascus, Maryland, in our November “Parent You Should Know” story for Washington FAMILY.