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How to Survive Your First Thanksgiving Away From Home

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The first Thanksgiving away from home is always a heartbreaker.

My first Thanksgiving away from home is coming up in a short few weeks and to put it lightly, I’m devastated. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, so not being able to see my entire family for the first time is going to be rough.

Life’s all about attitude though, so I’m going to try and make it as enjoyable as possible, and you should too! I decided to write this blog post for all those going through the same Thanksgiving withdrawal symptoms as me.

Here are the best ways to survive your first Thanksgiving away from home:

How to Spend Your First Thanksgiving Away from Home:

Find friends or family Nearby.

If you can, find friends in a similar situation as you and organize a little Friendsgiving of your own. It’s common to find people in the same boat as you this time of year and buying flights greater than $1000 bucks is unrealistic for some (aka me).

*You May Also Like: How to Throw The Ultimate Friendsgiving Celebration*

Since I am in California, I’ll be spending Thanksgiving this year with my boyfriend and his cousin. It’s obviously not my ideal situation, but it’s better than sulking in self-pity on the couch (which I refuse to do. Woo go me!). Besides, it’s a great chance to start some new Thanksgiving traditions and I <3 traditions.

Talk it out with others in the same situation as you.

Having a talk about surviving your first Thanksgiving away from home with others can actually make you feel a lot better. Everyone will experience a similar situation at one point in our lives, so talking it out is a good way to express your feelings and not keep your emotions bottled up inside.

Often, you’ll find comfort in others going through a similar situation. For example, while my cousin was a student-athlete in college, he would often spend Thanksgiving playing basketball somewhere across the country or even abroad. While our family missed having him present, he was with his team, and they were all going through the same situation.

Prepare those Family Recipes.

One of the best parts of Thanksgiving is the food! I am in love with my mother’s mashed potatoes, and we have a special family dessert that we only eat once a year on Thanksgiving.

Make it feel like as much as home as possible! Ask your family or whoever you typically spend Thanksgiving with if you can have the recipes for your favorite treats. Your taste buds will leave you reminiscing about the best memories of Thanksgiving’s past, while you share new experiences with friends.

Survive Your First Thanksgiving away from Home

Set up a Skype Date.

Facetime is seriously amazing for this reason. While I’m away from home I have regular facetime sessions with my parents and it feels like I have never left. Set up some time to facetime with your favorite people, and enjoy the special Thanksgiving conversations virtually.

Start New Traditions.

One of the hardest parts of Thanksgiving away from home is not being able to continue or take part in past tradition that you’ve cherished growing up.

Start some new traditions with your new Thanksgiving squad. Try watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving parade in the morning, or look into activities or games you can play with the crew.

Some traditions you don’t even need to be present to still be a part of! For example, every year my family picks names for Secret Santa. Just because you’re not there doesn’t mean you still can’t be a part of the magic. Get creative!

Survive Your First Thanksgiving Away from Home

Be Thankful.

Your first Thanksgiving away from home can be super emotional, but you have to take it and spin it in a positive direction! We’re #blessed to have such amazing family and friends that we’ve celebrated past Thanksgivings with.

Of course, it’ll be hard. There’s no doubt about it. But be thankful! We’re so lucky to have had such wonderful Thanksgiving memories. Just because we aren’t home, doesn’t mean those memories have to end! Create new ones that’ll last you a lifetime.

Have you ever spent Thanksgiving away from home? What did you do to make it a little easier?


Happy Thanksgiving beautiful friends!

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