Our Thanksgiving Rituals

Thanksgiving Turkey

Usually, we celebrate Thanksgiving at one of Ben’s brothers house. The family gathering usually involves the entire family. We get together and enjoy all the delicious dishes cooked by Ben’s gorgeous sister in law. This year our Thanksgiving celebration is a bit different. We are celebrating at our house and I am in charge of cooking the turkey and all the sides…

Now let me remind you something about myself. I was born and raised in Russia and we never celebrated or even heard about the holiday of Thanksgiving until I moved to New York, not to mention that I’ve never in my life cooked turkey. It’s not like I am even eating turkey!

Understanding that this holiday will be a unique at so many levels, Ben and I decided to create our own Thanksgiving rituals. Here is how we are planning to work it this holiday.

Rule #1: Prep Two Sets of Clothing


Ben is wearing Holiday Everyday t-shirt and I am wearing The Wild Life tank

It’s great if you decide in advance what you are wearing for Thanksgiving dinner, but you also need to figure out what to wear during the day. I think it’s important to enjoy every moment you spend together as a couple and it requires some extra effort even if all you do is cooking and cleaning. This year, we are wearing cute t-shirts (c/o) by Weekend Society while prepping and festive attire while celebrating. 

Rule #2: Less Cooking, More Enjoying

I was so anxious of turkey failure that I decided to order a pre-cooked one from Fresh Direct. It still takes two and a half hours in the oven to make get turkey ready, but it’s much less effort than starting from scratch, and there is no stress regarding not fully cooking it. Our turkey also came with a few side dishes and sauces so I’ll not be killing myself in the kitchen. In my opinion, that’s the way to celebrate this holiday—you will actually have time to enjoy time with your family.

Rule #3: Put Decor On A Different Level

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I’ve been working on a few DIY projects recently. Recently, I’ve been obsessing with gold and glitter decorating. For instance, I covered all my mini pumpkins, pinecones, and acorns with a golden spray paint. I ordered this can of spray paint at Amazon a few weeks before and it was enough for creating an entire centerpiece. I also updated our table decor collection with a tablecloth, runner, and napkins by Kate Spade New York. Finally, I bought some new candles and picked up some fresh flowers for the table.

Rule #4: Don’t Forget to Call Mom

Even though my family in Russia does not celebrate Thanksgiving, it’s important for to get in touch with them on this day. My parents do not speak English and Ben knows just a few words in Russian, but we always enjoy our Skype conversations. Usually, I am translating the entire conversation with exception of a few phrases that my parents know in English and a few words that Ben knows in Russian. Somebody recently asked me via Periscope if I miss Russia. Actually, I don’t. What I do miss though is my parents, my little sister, and my cute doggie Lilu. I hope to visit them again after New Years.

Rule #5: Take Holiday Photos

Another American tradition that I was not familiar with when I came to the U.S. is winter holiday postcards. Russian people never send those, especially with photos of the entire family on a card (in ugly sweaters). Russians usually, just get together on New Years Eve and call or text each other on December 31st. I knew about the photo tradition from American movies and loved it. This year, it will be the first time when we are planning to take photos for our holiday card and I am so excited about it!

I look forward to hearing about your Thanksgiving traditions and rituals! Who are you celebrating with? Do you ever cook turkey by yourself?