Thanksgiving is a holiday for giving, so why not say thanks to your host? This year, bring along a special token of appreciation to the person’s home which you are visiting. When in doubt, ask the host if he or she needs anything for the party. Often the affair will be completely under control, so you may have to improvise or make your own gift. Here are some suggestions for getting someone a present for a Thanksgiving celebration.
A no-fail option, even if the host didn’t ask you to bring food, is a gift basket. While these aren’t very personal, they are in line with the spirit of the season. Plentiful baskets chock full with meats, cheeses, nuts, and fruits are quite fitting. Fine wine or liqueurs are also suitable for the right party. You can personalize a gift basket by making it your own, but be sure to include some of the recipient’s favorites! Be sure to arrive early if you want your gift served before or with the main meal.
Flowers, centerpieces, wreaths, and cornucopias are reasonable offerings for decor-minded hosts. Look for arrangements that echo harvest colors; yellow, gold, red, bronze, purple, brown, and copper shades are best. If you’re making your own special centerpiece or wreath, consider using wheat sheaves, nuts, fall leaves, or berries to accent fall flowers like sunflowers, daisies, alstroemeria, lilies, marigolds, and chrysanthemums.
You can also make unique, harvest-themed trinkets; please visit the Thanksgiving Crafts Guide for more ideas that are guaranteed original.
Most hosts will appreciate a little help in the food department. Try to find seasonal items like pumpkin cake or maple cookies; these will be super with traditional favorites like sweet potato pie or apple cider. A savory pie or a special side dish can also improve the meal. Be careful; just as no one should overshadow the bride on her wedding day, nothing you bring to the meal should top the chef’s specialty.
Cornucopia Fruit Basket
The horn of plenty is a traditional symbol of good fortune. A cornucopia fruit basket usually features apples, pears, and oranges as well as cookies, cheese, smoked nuts, and candies.
Thanksgiving Gift Basket
These usually include seasonal favorites like maple sugar-flavored popcorn, honey cinnamon almonds, butter pecan cookies, toasted wheat crackers, salami, and various cheeses.
Pumpkin Flavored Coffee
Combine the rich, creamy taste of pumpkin pie with aromatic roasted coffee and you get a delectable start to your day.
Spiral Sliced Ham
The host has the turkey covered, so why not provide an alternate meat? You can buy a ready-to-serve honey-glazed ham so you won’t have to do any prep work before the party.
Bring a cheesecake sampler to the party and you will surely be the most popular guest. These often include varieties like Amaretto, Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Fudge, New York Style, Blueberry Swirl and many more.
When looking for decorations, think warm, think cozy, think family. Candles with spicy fragrances, toasty throws or blankets with an autumn theme; and even nature-inspired picture frames are always on the right track.
A Thanksgiving-themed nutcracker is perfect for the assorted nut lover you know.
Cornucopia wreaths are carefully made with real twigs and silk or naturally preserved fall leaves.
Autumn Themed Votives
Breathe in the woodsy scents of autumn–without the chill!–with a fall-themed votive candle.
These are a contemporary twist to the 4000-year-old technique of creating gourd bowls.
A turkey basket is a nifty way to bring Thanksgiving treats to your friends and family.
A hardy herb that can give any dish a fresh, culinary seasoning.
Place Card Holders
Elegant card place holders are a nice touch and they help organize dinner guests.
These soaps are ideal for use in the guest bathroom.
Give someone a soft and stylish scarf to keep him or her warm in the coming winter months.
Everybody loves photos on display! Electronic picture frames are a modern-day twist on a classic.
Sports Oriented Gifts
While the big, drowsiness-inducing meal is the main event on Thanksgiving, football is pretty important too, if only as the traditional way to kill time. Your host might not be able to use any of these gifts on the holiday itself, but they’ll be sure to appreciate them throughout the season.
This grill is just the thing for tailgate party regulars, though this might not be the best way to prepare that turkey dinner.
On cold Sunday afternoon, nothing is better than watching the game in an authentic NFL sweater or hoodie.
These mugs are excellent for those who like to watch the game and have a beer.
Padded Stadium Seat
Sit in the bleachers in style! With these padded seats you can lean back, relax, and really enjoy the game.
Picture Taking Binoculars
These are neat binoculars that take clear, digital pictures and video from hundreds of feet away.
Gifts for the Chef
If you’re dining at the house of someone who loves to cook and entertain, why not opt for a gift that speaks his or her language? Cooking tools and equipment are always helpful for the motivated chef. Don’t forget that glassware and tableware are also good options; festive appetizer plates, ceramic serving caddies, olive oil and vinegar sets, and Thanksgiving-themed cheese knives or spice racks are just a few ideas. It may be a good to send these items on ahead so the recipient can make use of them. You can also count them as early holiday presents.
Often overlooked on the kitchen table, a gravy boat can be a practical and decorative gift.
A good oven thermometer can make the difference between a dry turkey and a perfectly cooked bird.
Perfect for enjoying appetizers, a cheese board will delight the host who lives to serve.
Gourmet Carving Set
Nobody should be without quality carving utensils this Thanksgiving.
You can’t serve pie without a dish, so be sure you grab one or two for the holidays.
After the food and football, there is only one thing left to do: relax. One classic Thanksgiving activity is settling down to catch a flick as a family, perhaps with a cup of cocoa. Here are some typical holiday films that you can bring to your next Thanksgiving get-together.
A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
Miracle on 34th Street
Seasons of Giving: With all-time children’s star, Winnie the Pooh.
Inside Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade
Planes, Trains, and Automobiles
Home For the Holidays
Hannah and Her Sisters
Pieces of April