Au Pair Host Family Fun for Thanksgiving

by cv harquail on November 10, 2014

20 Fun Things You Can Do with Family on Thanksgiving

Hi Host moms—  I found this great list of ideas for Thanksgiving on the DumbLittleMan Tips for Life blog. It’s such a great list that there is no way to summarize it and do it justice, so I’m excerpting it in large chunks… but if you want the whole thing and/or if you want to print it out for later reference, please click back to DumbLittleMan so that they get credit for the page views. 

thanksgiving au pair celebrating, blogs about au pairs “We all know some of the favorite things people like to do on Thanksgiving: watch football, watch The Macy’s Day Parade, and of course taking a nap after gorging on Turkey. Well the purpose of this article is to inspire everyone who reads it to turn off the TV (web, video games) for part of the day and really spend some quality time with your friends and family. You’ll have have fun doing it and you’ll create fun, fond memories.”

1. Take a Walk. Pick an enjoyable destination.
2. Play Touch Football.
Or soccer, tag, hide-n-seek, etc. Just get outside with the gang and do something that involves running around and taking in some nice fresh air.
3. Boardgames!
4. Play Charades. This doesn’t take much. Make your own rules as you go. Have fun!
5. Sing-a-Long. Karaoke. Make up a contest.
6. Memory Sharing. Share stories. You can pick a theme such as:
The greatest day of my life.

  • The best thing that happened in my life this year.
  • My favorite memory from childhood.
  • The funniest thing that ever happened to me.

Have someone scribe the stories or videotape the event.
i am thankful, blogs about au pairs 7. Share Thanks. At dinner have everyone share what they are thankful for before eating dinner.
8. Silly Dance Contest. Just like it says. Be silly. Dance. Make up your own rules.
9. Kids Talent Show.
10. I Love My Family because…. Gather round as a family and have each person share what they love about the family. (I personally heart this idea….)
11. Share the Love. Have the family all in one room and have each person tell why they admire the person next to him/her. And then that person says why they admire the person next to him/her, and so on. “I Admire ___________ because…”
12. Treasure Hunt. Create a simple treasure map and “prizes.”
13. Name That Tune. Play the humming game where each teams or individuals have to name the tune.
14. The Questions Game. Here is a link to a family game with very few rules . You get to make up the rules. The idea is to spark conversations, have fun, and get to know each other better.
15. The Craziest Thing …. (that I saw or experienced this year). As a family tell stories that can be true or made up. Everyone tells a crazy story that is either true or made up and everyone has to guess if it is true or not. And the story doesn’t have to be something that they actually experienced.
16. Our Family Tree. Have everyone imprint a fingerpaint handprint on a big sheet of paper with their name underneath. You can have it framed or take a picture of it to share with everyone. (How great would this be to take to Aunt Barney in the adult care facility?)
17. Start a Thanksgiving Day Banner. Starting this year create a banner that can hang in your living room that will have a picture of the whole family from each year. It can become an heirloom for future generations. You could also create a similar item electronically say with a website.
18. Three Legged Races.
19. Family Thanksgiving Journal. Grab a blank notebook. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Write down everyone’s thanks for this year. And then next year do the same so that over time you build a treasured family book of thanks as well as a sort of family history.soulemama
20. Make Me Laugh. Tell jokes. You can make it into a game to see if you can get someone to laugh.

Happy Thanksgiving all! Enjoy!

Originally written for Dumb Little Man by K. Stone in 2007. She is the author of Life Learning Today , a blog about daily life improvements.

{ 10 comments }

NoVA Twin Mom November 11, 2014 at 9:14 pm

Not quite Thanksgiving but definitely in the spirit (because in my family we watch football on Thanksgiving, and this is about attending a football game…)

There are a LOT of us here in the DC area. Somehow, WTOP (a very reputable news outlet here) reports that there are nearly 7000 tickets left for the Redskins/Tampa Bay football game on Sunday. There are tickets available for $11.00 – unheard of for this professional football market. My au pair and her friend just got $15.00 tickets – they paid the $4 extra to get a seat instead of standing room only tickets.

Going to a football game was one of our au pair’s “bucket list” items so this is HUGE because tickets are usually – if available – MUCH more expensive than this. So if you’re in the DC area you might want to have your au pair check StubHub or the WTOP LiveBlog “Nobody wants to see the Redskins play Tampa Bay”.

AlwaysHopeful HM November 11, 2014 at 10:43 pm

Is that this Sunday? I’ll definitely tell my au pair. He really loves football, and what is more fun than seeing a live game?? Thanks for the tip!

NoVA Twin Mom November 12, 2014 at 9:14 am

Yes, this Sunday (November 16, 2014 for later reference).

Taking a Computer Lunch November 11, 2014 at 11:54 pm

We’re not a praying family, but we do go around the table and offer everyone the opportunity to say a few words about those things for which they are thankful.

Having recently gone into rematch, and trying to juggle childcare while we wait for an out-of-country successor, I know I will be thankful for my newly arrived AP!! (DH landed jury duty and won’t tell the judge that he’s largely responsible for getting a child with special needs ready for school in the morning! Ack!! This is why I’ll cry when said child is no longer eligible to have an au pair care for her!! I happily give up a family vacation to have the flexibility of hosting an au pair!!)

TexasHM November 11, 2014 at 11:59 pm

TACL you’ll just have to adopt another kiddo and start all over! ;)

cv harquail November 12, 2014 at 3:29 pm

I keep hoping the same thing. Or, TaCL will become a local counselor and actually get *paid* for all her wonderful advice.

TexasHM November 12, 2014 at 4:24 pm

I second that as well!! Does her agency take nominations? CV let’s just get that done. :)

WarmStateMomma November 12, 2014 at 5:38 pm

IMO they should just open their own boutique agency. Their first cluster should be in my neighborhood, of course.

TexasHM – I used your idea of having the candidate forward a message to her parents inviting them to pose questions or concerns (and politely assuming they will support their daughter’s AP experience). This was very well received on the other end!

TexasHM November 12, 2014 at 6:07 pm

LOL yes I want to join that cluster too! :)
WarmStateMomma SO glad to hear they liked that! I always try to put myself in the other persons shoes and I often think “if my daughter was going to live with a family in a foreign country what would make me more amenable to that idea?” and having an open line of communication or them reaching out to me was what my DH and I came up with. Putting a face or even email with the name and having the parental compassion to reach out would go a long way with me so we tried it and it went really well! Almost everything we do in our process is a direct result of extensive trial and mostly error. ;) So did you make a decision on a candidate?!

WarmStateMomma November 12, 2014 at 6:31 pm

We chose the one you and I discussed with the most driving experience. She should be in the system by the end of the week so we can finalize the match. HD and I feel really good about our choice, but I also found a lot to like about our other final candidates and think they’d be great for families with less need for experienced drivers.

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