3 Simple DIY Ways to Put the ‘Thanks’ in Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is about more than food and hosting guests; at its core, it is about giving thanks and giving back. It is an opportunity to share with those who, perhaps, don’t have as much as you, to tell those you love just how much you love them, and to recognize what you are grateful for.

Here are three simple DIY ways you can show your thanks.

Many families spend the day after Thanksgiving handing out their leftovers to those who aren’t as fortunate — start a tradition of giving with your family.

  • Paper bags
  • Stickers
  • Ribbon
  • Stamp with a “Thanks” message
  • Ink pad
  • Decorative hole punch
  • Scissors

1. Stamp your bags with a message that evokes the sentiment of the season, such as “Thanks.”

2. Stick your stickers on the bag.

3. Punch a decorative hole through the top of the bag.

4. Add leftovers to the bag, and tie it shut with a length of ribbon strung through the punched holes at the top.

5. Repeat for as many bags as you can give.

Compliments are underrated these days. We believe in telling the people you love just how highly you think of them. This holiday season, say it with a pumpkin.

  • Pumpkin
  • Puffy paint
  • Label
  • Ribbon
  • Scissors
  • Pen

1. Write “Who Am I?” on one side of your label, and the name of a guest on the other side.

2. Using puffy paint, write a list of compliments and adjectives about the person whose name you wrote on the label right across and around the pumpkin, until the pumpkin is covered with words.

3. Dot a bit of puffy paint in a contrasting color between the words for clarity, and let the pumpkin dry.

5. Attach the label with a length of ribbon.

Give guests and family members a fun way to express what they are grateful for. This whimsical pumpkin “turkey” provides the perfect canvas for a multitude of feathery thanks. 

  • Large pumpkin 
  • Tiny cocktail pumpkin
  • Googly eyes
  • Red construction paper
  • Feathers
  • Feather picks
  • Bamboo skewers
  • Construction paper in fall colors
  • Washi tape
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Pen

1. Cut feather shapes out of the fall-colored construction paper.

2. Wrap the bottom tip of the “feather” around the flat end of a bamboo skewer and secure it with washi tape. Add a few real, tiny feathers at the base and secure with more washi tape.

3. Make as many feathers as you have guests. Set them aside with a pen so that guests can write what they are grateful for on them.

1. Sit pumpkin on its side so that the stem becomes a nose/beak.

2. Hot glue the tiny cocktail pumpkin to the top of the “beak” stem of the big pumpkin. The effect should be that of a turkey head.

3. Stick the googly eyes onto the cocktail pumpkin.

4. Tear strips of red construction paper to make the turkey’s wattle (red floppy part on top of the head and under the chin), and hot glue them to the top of the cocktail pumpkin and to either side of your turkey’s chin.

5. Stab the feather pick into the pumpkin at the tail feathers spot, along with some other real feathers, to create the beginnings of a full turkey tail.

6. Set the turkey out on a table, along with the paper feathers for writing gratitudes on, so that guests may pin their feathers to the turkey’s tail.


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