For most of my twenties, I traveled from Massachusetts to Virginia to spend Thanksgiving with my grandparents and my aunt and her family. It was the family closest to me.
In 2015, I moved to North Carolina and I got to see that family a whole lot more. Because of this, I decided to skip the insane traffic and stay home for Thanksgiving.
I spent the last four years alone at Thanksgiving and it was, in a word, AWESOME.
Not that I don’t love spending time with my family, but man my “lizgiving” as I’ve come to call it is pretty great.
How I Enjoy Thanksgiving Alone
Here is how I truly enjoy spending Thanksgiving alone:
First, I give myself the day off. This is important to note because I am self-employed and I do work most days. So giving myself a day where I am 100% off – I don’t even open my email is a big deal.
Because it’s a day off, I also let myself sleep in.
Then, I start the day with champagne. I’d say I start with a mimosa, but I don’t really like orange juice (I was allergic to oranges as a kid), so it really is just champagne.
I put on a TV show I’ve been wanting to binge and start browsing the Black Friday/Thanksgiving sales online.
I might also start snacking on the pack of Hawaiian rolls I bought for the holiday.
Then eventually, I start cooking. However, I only make the Thanksgiving foods I love. Which actually doesn’t include turkey.
(I did make a turkey one year but then realized, I don’t actually like turkey all that much. I don’t mind it but I don’t need an entire bird to myself.)
Typically I make mashed potatoes, gravy, rolls (the Hawaiian ones you just pop in the oven to warm), and stuffing.
Once it’s done I eat. And then I eat some later if I get hungry.
Around 5 or 6 pm, when the sales officially start I buy what I want online. Turns out you don’t typically have to go to the stores anymore to get those Black Friday deals.
Plus, if I wanted to go out that would mean I couldn’t enjoy my champagne throughout the day.
And that’s it. I know that seemed a bit long-winded so let me break down the basics for you…
How You Can Enjoy Thanksgiving alone
Here are some tips to help you love your Thanksgiving spent alone:
- Give yourself the day off, no work, no chores, no running errands
- Be lazy and do an activity you enjoy, that could be binging a tv show, or reading a book, whatever it is you enjoy but don’t get to do often enough
- Only make the Thanksgiving food you like
- Do any shopping online and avoid going out
My Thanksgiving Plans This year
I once again moved this year, this time across the country and now live close to my immediate family.
This will be the first Thanksgiving I spend with them since a decade ago and while I’m excited in some ways (a new holiday for me to watch my niece and nephew enjoy), I am a little bit anxious about some aspects of it as well.
I’m definitely going to miss my special little Lizgiving this year, so if you read this post and are planning to implement it to enjoy Thanksgiving alone, know that I will be living vicariously through you.
This year I’ll be doing a 10k turkey trot with my sisters and brother-in-law (finally something to motivate me to exercise). Then it’ll be off to the races with getting Thanksgiving dinner ready.
I imagine that going from spending Thanksgiving alone to being surrounded by potentially 11 other people is going to be a shock to my system. Let’s hope I can manage okay.
While holidays are often considered “family holidays” they don’t have to be and it can be wonderful to spend a holiday alone.
If you want to or if you don’t have a choice in terms of spending the day alone, try to see it as an opportunity to give yourself a relaxing day of self-care.
While I look forward to family time, I’ll definitely be missing my alone time on Thanksgiving. I hope you enjoy yours!
Happy Thanksgiving! Have questions? Let me know in the comments!