Thanksgiving is a time when families living in the United States come together to celebrate all that they are grateful for. For many foster kids, this holiday can be bittersweet. They may feel grateful for the new family they have been welcomed into, but may also feel sad and loss at not being able to spend the holiday with their birth family. There are many ways we can support foster kids on Thanksgiving day. In this blog post, we will explore nine of them!
Understanding The Importance of Supporting Foster Kids During the Holidays
Foster kids often face many challenges. They may have experienced trauma, abuse, or neglect. This can make it difficult for them to feel safe and secure in the world. Thanksgiving is a time when family traditions are celebrated and memories are made. For foster kids, this holiday can be a reminder of what they may not have. It is important to support foster kids on Thanksgiving so that they can feel included and loved. Family, friends, teachers, and community members can all play a role in supporting foster kids on Thanksgiving. Here are some ways you can support a foster kid this holiday:
Help Foster Kids to Verbalize What They’re Feeling
This time of year can be tough for foster kids. They may be missing their birth families, feeling confused about their place in the world, or simply feeling overwhelmed by all the holiday hoopla. It’s important to let them express their feelings and validate those feelings. Let them know that it’s okay to feel sad, scared, or angry and that you’re there for them no matter what.
Make The Day Better By Including Them In Your Family Traditions
Foster kids may feel like they are outsiders looking in on other families’ traditions. Show them that they are part of the family by including them in your own traditions! Whether it’s watching the parade together, sharing what you’re thankful for around the dinner table, or playing touch football in the park, let them know that they are welcome and loved.
Prepare A Thoughtful Thanksgiving Meal That Makes Them Feel Special
For many kids in foster care, food is one of the only constants in their lives. Make sure they have a special Thanksgiving meal and include some of their favorite dishes on the menu. If you’re not sure what their favorites are, ask! This is a great opportunity to bond with your foster kid and to show them that they are valued and loved.
This can be done by including them in the food preparation! Ask them if they have any favorite dishes, and see if there are any kid-friendly versions of traditional Thanksgiving recipes that would like to help prepare. Even simple tasks like stirring the gravy or adding ingredients to the stuffing can make them feel involved.
There are many benefits of getting kids busy cooking in the kitchen on Thanksgiving day. It helps them to feel included in the holiday preparations, teaches them about different foods and flavors, and gets them involved in a fun activity. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to bond with your foster kid. Here are three kid-friendly Thanksgiving recipes to try:
This recipe is perfect for smaller families, or for those who don’t want to deal with a whole turkey. Simply roast a turkey breast in the oven, basting it occasionally with chicken broth or white wine. Once it’s cooked through, let it rest for 10 minutes before carving. Serve with your favorite side dishes.
This is a quick and easy recipe for homemade cranberry sauce. Simply simmer cranberries, sugar, orange juice, and cinnamon in a pot on the stove. Once the cranberries have popped and the sauce has thickened, remove from heat and let cool. Serve alongside your roasted turkey breast.
This kid-friendly Thanksgiving casserole is sure to be a hit! Start by boiling sweet potatoes until they are soft. Mash them with butter, brown sugar, eggs, and cinnamon. Spread the mixture into a baking dish and top with mini marshmallows. Bake in the oven until the marshmallows are melted and golden brown. Serve warm.
Show Foster Kids You Care With A Token of Your Affection
A small gift can go a long way in making a foster kid feel special on Thanksgiving. It doesn’t have to be anything big or expensive – just something that shows you were thinking of them. A warm scarf, a new pair of gloves, a book about turkeys… whatever you think will make them smile. Here are some additional ideas:
-A cozy blanket or pair of socks
-A thanksgiving-themed book
-A festive mug or ornament
-A homemade card or picture frame
Quality Time Is A Great Way To Boost a Foster Kid’s Spirits
Above all, the best way to support a foster kid on Thanksgiving is to simply spend time with them. Play a game, watch a movie, go for a walk… just be together. This is a time to create lasting memories and to show them that they are loved. Here are some great ideas for how you can spend time together!
Make the Day Fun With A Thanksgiving Craft
There are tons of kid-friendly Thanksgiving crafts out there! Try making turkey handprints, thankfulness trees, or paper plate Pilgrims. This is a great way to spend time together and get into the holiday spirit.
- Turkey Handprint Craft
- Gratitude Tree Craft
- Making Name Tags For Table Settings
Playing Games Is A Great Way To Include Foster Kids on Thanksgiving
Games are always a fun way to pass the time, and there are plenty of kid-friendly games that can be played on Thanksgiving day. Try charades, Pictionary, or 20 questions. Or, break out some classic board games like Monopoly or Sorry.
Strengthen Your Bond While Watching a Heartwarming Holiday Movie
After a busy day of cooking, eating, and spending time with family, it’s nice to relax with a good movie. Pop some popcorn, snuggle up under a blanket, and enjoy quality time together. Some kid-friendly Thanksgiving movies include A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, The First Thanksgiving, and The Pilgrims’ First Thanksgiving.
Get Out and Get Some Fresh Air After Your Thanksgiving Dinner
Getting some exercise is always a good idea, especially after indulging in all of the delicious food. bundled up and go for a walk around the block or in a nearby park. This is a great way to get some exercise and chat with your foster kid about anything and everything.
From the Believe in Me family to yours, we hope these tips were helpful! Wishing you and the foster children in your life a happy and enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday!