One of my favorite things to do on Thanksgiving is to put together the kids table. The kids love having their own special space, and I love that it keeps them busy so that I can finish dinner and get it on the table without little feet underneath me. Everybody wins.
I started doing this a few years ago, and it became an unintentional family tradition. One year I bought cute little felt Mayflowers from Pottery Barn Kids to decorate the table and set out a few cookies that I had personalized with their names. They thought that it was the best thing ever and the following year, they asked me how I was decorating their table a few days before Thanksgiving. It became a thing.
You don’t need to do anything big or elaborate, but having something for them to eat and do really helps keep the party flowing nicely. They are entertained and happy – and you (and any other parents) can have an adult conversation and maybe indulge in a cocktail in peace.
I always have a kids snack tray with lots of different options. This is almost always a last minute thing, so I just shop my pantry and fridge and put everything on a tray. They love it. And funny enough, so do the grown-ups. It never fails. It doesn’t matter what I have, cheese trays, dips, bacon and water chestnuts – the adults are always sneaking the Goldfish off of the kid’s table.
I set out some waffle cones and the kids filled them up to look like cornucopias. This was a hit. They loved it. (I don’t normally put candy on the table, but I had just finished a shoot and they were already out. I’m lazy and let them stay.)
Here are some ideas:
- cheese and crackers
- apple slices
- sliced veggies
- ranch for dipping
- graham crackers
- trail mix
I made these turkey cookie place cards for Dixie Crystals and the kids were impressed. (Not the easiest thing to do in this house.)
I also want them to have things to do. I used kraft paper and used a few pieces of washi tape to stick them to the table. I bought a few little crafts from Michaels and set out markers and crayons. They can color the turkeys, play tic-tac-toe, or just draw on the placemats. You can also find printables and other fun activities on my Thanksgiving Board.
For more Thanksgiving recipes, entertaining ideas, and stress-free holiday planner printables grab a copy of The Thanksgiving Game Plan.