How to Prepare for Your Thanksgiving Break Trip Home
Thanksgiving break is approaching, and I don’t know about y’all, but I couldn’t be more excited about it.
A holiday full of sweet potato casserole and Honey Baked Ham is one I’m all about celebrating. However, if you think about it, the break can almost be an ordeal. For one thing, the turkey won’t be the only thing stuffed on Thanksgiving. And family reunions are always interesting, to say the least. Here are a few ways to prepare for the Thanksgiving holiday.
When packing, prepare for whatever weather you’ll be facing. For example, if you’re going home to North Dakota, you might face frigid temperatures that you forgot existed. On the other hand, if you’re staying in Sweet Home Alabama, pack for all weather occasions. Prepare to be in shorts one day and a parka the next. You never know.
When it comes to planning your schedule, don’t. If you think you’re going to be productive over the break, you’re wrong. Go ahead and surrender to the fact that you’ll spend the majority of your time binge-watching Netflix on the sofa. It’s okay; after almost a full semester of hard work, you’ve earned it. If possible, throw in a workout here or there. With all the food headed your way on Thursday, it’ll help to be proactive.
As far as the actual day goes, brace yourself for catching-up questions and political arguments. They’re inevitable. To make it a little more tolerable, play a game of “Family Reunion Bingo.” Have a square for things like “Aunt Susan asks about getting a boyfriend/girlfriend,” “every family member questions my life plan,” and “Uncle Phil starts a full-on political dispute.” It’ll help add some humor to your day, and maybe a cousin or sibling can get in on it with you, too.
Besides conversation, remember that a feast will be laid before you. The giant spread will tempt you to add heaping helpings of every option on your plate. To avoid ending up in the painful, holding-your-sides, post-dinner fetal position, pick your favorite foods and “Thanksgiving rarities” instead of eating all that’s offered.
Let’s be honest: even if you try to avoid it, you’re probably going to overeat. So how do you control it? The first response should be obvious, and yet, I struggle to follow it every year: STOP EATING IMMEDIATELY. Put down your fork. Clean up your plate. Get that temptation away from you. Also, drinking a sugary drink will fill you up faster, so switch to water. Furthermore, a post-meal walk might be just what you need. Get some fresh air and walk slowly, letting everything settle.
At the end of the day, Thanksgiving break is one of my favorite parts of the year. Enjoy this time with family and friends. Take some time away from the hectic nature of your college schedule to count your blessings — it is “Thanksgiving,” after all.
Wishing y’all a relaxing break and a happy Thanksgiving!
And as always,
Be well, Auburn.
Photography: Jack Parrish