How does one go about celebrating a holiday in a country in which the holiday does not exist?

It’s obvious that I am very excited about this, being that I am making this post a couple weeks before thanksgiving. I want to share with all of you how I am going to share Thanksgiving with my friends here in Spain! First, what do Spaniards know about Thanksgiving? Not much, but then again, what do I really know about Thanksgiving? Pilgrims, turkeys, being thankful, family, football, pumpkins, gourds, pies, casseroles. That pretty much sums up my knowledge of Thanksgiving. So, giving that my expectations are low as to what people should know about Thanksgiving, I don’t mind that my roommates don’t have any idea as to what to expect. Especially because this gives me the freedom to be in charge of everything and I am so excited because I love Thanksgiving! So, you have the freedom to basically create your own holiday…what are you going to do? I mean, what would you do?

Make shit up, obviously.

Ok, ok. I would never want to ruin Thanksgiving for anyone, so to be honest, I have made a plan for Thanksgiving which I am about to share with you all. However, there are going to be a couple flaws in my Thanksgiving. First, it’s going to be during the weekend, so that I have more time to cook and prep. Second, there will be no giant roasted turkey. NO TURKEY?! are you out of your mind?! I am ashamed to admit that I will have no turkey but, it just isn’t realistic here in Spain. Mainly because I don’t even know how to cook a turkey in America. Secondly, because I don’t think I can buy an entire turkey here and lastly, my oven doesn’t have a temperature gauge. Thankfully casseroles don’t really have to be cooked at a certain temperature, I am hoping for the best with my casserole. Otherwise my dinner will be just mashed potatoes…

For the first Thanksgiving that I ever host, the Thanksgiving turkey is going to be a chicken.

Now, I am more than excited to introduce my roommates (and my American friends!) to my version of Thanksgiving! I am hoping that my American friends will contribute some of their traditions to our Thanksgiving too! If you had to introduce Thanksgiving to people who had never celebrated before, what would you do? What would you want them to take out of the experience? Here is a summary of my Spanish Turkey Day plan:

Menu

Salad
Turkey
Green Bean Casserole
Mashed Potatoes with Gravy
Homemade Macaroni and Cheese
Stuffing
Corn
Apple Crisp

Crafts

Ok, I love arts and crafts. I was a preschool teacher for four years and I am currently a first grade teacher, so expressing myself with mindless-childish crafts is one of my favorite things to do. Haha, can’t help but laugh at how if I was in the states right now, I would have to relate all of my Thanksgiving crafts to child development!

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Fine Motor and Early Literacy

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TV

While doing these crafts, were going to have some youtube on in the background and I suggest you do the same. Of what? You ask. Well well well…lots of options. A rerun of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, or Thanksgiving day football. I think any of these would be perfect. No, they won’t be from this year, but hey, you could get vintage with it and watch the parade from 2006 or something!

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Giving Thanks

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Welp, that’s pretty obvious I think. We get to talk about how happy we are to have one another. Everyone’s family does this differently, I am not sure what me and my “family” here in Spain will do, but I am sure we will find something!

Go for a walk, a “Turkey Trot”…!

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My (American) family is really into running, so usually once we have all digested, some sort of run takes place through the neighborhood. I don’t think all of my Spanish family would approve, so a run is out of the question. However, after dinner, we are going to have to take a nice stroll through Madrid to appreciate the beautiful fall that is upon us and all of the Christmas lights that have been put up in the center! I cannot wait! See what I did there? I said “We are going to do ____ and appreciate it”. I think that means there isn’t an option, hahah. Ok, if they don’t want to go on a walk, they don’t have to…it’s just strongly encouraged. Hopefully by then the cleaning strike will be over and the only thing on the ground will be fallen leaves! A girl can dream!

I am so grateful to be celebrating Thanksgiving here in Spain and I cannot wait to share all of my favorite things with the people who have become my family here in Madrid! I hope they are just as excited as I am!! Have you begun planning your Thanksgiving? Have I left out anything important?

Kate

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