Spending Thanksgiving alone
November 23, 2016 9:05 AM   Subscribe

I'll likely be celebrating the holiday alone tomorrow (crappy work schedule and family scattered across the country). I'll be hosting a Friends-giving on Sunday. I'm a little bummed about being alone tomorrow but would like to make the most out of it. I looked into volunteering but seems I'm too late to sign up for stuff. So far, I've got sleeping in and yoga. I'd love other ideas as to how to make a nice day for myself. Thanks! And happy turkey day to everyone :)
posted by namemeansgazelle to Human Relations (16 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I'm sort of in the same situation and like last year, I resolved to make my own fancy thanksgiving dinner. It was my first time cooking thanksgiving and even thought it was just me, I felt really good about it. For you, if cooking isn't your thing you could just order your favorite dishes your your favorite restaurant. Treat yourself to something delicious!
posted by driedmango at 9:10 AM on November 23, 2016

Start some pie crusts for homemade pie on Sunday.

Go for a lovely quiet walk.

Listen to a podcast while knitting or cleaning.

Write holiday cards.
posted by amtho at 9:21 AM on November 23, 2016

I may be you for Christmas! I am planning to:
-Catch up on work
-Binge watch TV
-Avoid reading Social Media - I think this is a big one because it can be hard to see all the Big Happy Gatherings (even though I know many people are secretly drinking in the closet after posting their Perfect Projections)
posted by CoffeeHikeNapWine at 9:41 AM on November 23, 2016 [2 favorites]

I looked into volunteering but seems I'm too late to sign up for stuff.

How are you with critters?

Call local animal shelters. Animals still need cuddles and walks, and on a holiday when most people are spending time with other people, animal shelters probably will be operating with minimal staff.
posted by phunniemee at 9:42 AM on November 23, 2016 [3 favorites]

Are you near any metafilter folks? There was a Metatalk thread where folks offered their homes for the holidays. Maybe you can find someone near you? Not sure your location.
posted by FireFountain at 9:43 AM on November 23, 2016 [2 favorites]

Things I have done on Thanksgiving and Loved:

- silent meditation retreat day (with a break to talk to family on the phone), which I roughly sketched out ahead of time, but turned into some meditation (silent, walking, mindfullness), a lot of napping, and great take-out.

- home projects capped with a delicious meal in a fancy bar. I painted a ceiling by myself for hours, because I wanted it done and I could do this thing for myself. Then went out to a local fancy-ish restaurant, sat at the bar, and ate Exactly what I wanted (which included an extra serving of ice cream, thank you very much).

So great!
posted by ldthomps at 9:45 AM on November 23, 2016 [2 favorites]

Get some books in case the power/internet goes out.

Make sure you have all the food you'll want; without an "event", it's easy to forget to plan, and almost everything will be closed.
posted by amtho at 9:48 AM on November 23, 2016 [2 favorites]

Give yourself an offline day. No emails, no Internet, no other news sources. Just book reading/movies/cooking/cocktail making/walking/knitting/toenail polishing whatever your thing is.
posted by fingersandtoes at 9:57 AM on November 23, 2016 [4 favorites]

I love spending Thanksgiving alone! Thanksgiving with people is nice, but all the people I would like to spend the day with the most also happen to live a few thousand miles away in different directions, so I've done the holiday alone for the past few years and I'm really getting into it. Sometimes I take myself out to a movie if there's something in the theater I'm interested in, sometimes I stay home and watch one of the bajillion pieces of media I need to catch up on. What better time to tear through Luke Cage or that new Netflix series about Queen Elizabeth, or to do a quick rewatch of some crucial Gilmore Girls episodes before the new episodes drop on Friday (or late Thursday night if we're lucky oh please oh please), or get neck-deep in a great new book? If I'm staying home all day, I like to make my home as comfortable as possible -- a quick tidy up if it's a mess that's bumming me out, then light some nice smelling candles or burn some pinon incense (it's my preferred holiday smell). If the weather is nice and I'm going out for a walk with my camera to capture a good sky, I'll find a pretty place to go walk -- nature preserves are great if there's one near you that's open, any parks with walking trails, maybe a beach. Extra self-care is also nice -- instead of speeding through a utilitarian shower, sometimes I run a bath and throw in the bath salts or whatever that I've been saving for a "special" occasion and then settle in with something off the towering to-be-read stack. For food, sometimes I make a few Thanksgiving traditional faves, but this year it might be a giant lasagna or maybe a flat iron steak and chimmichurri sauce. I haven't really decided. If you're having Friendsgiving this weekend, maybe save the traditional foods for that and have something decadent or comforting on Thursday. If you're a dessert person, absolutely get yourself a nice dessert for Thursday -- lots of stores sell single-serving slices of pie if pie is your jam but you don't want a whole one sitting around, or say to hell with it and get yourself a whole pie. Basically, this is a day for you to do you.
posted by palomar at 10:00 AM on November 23, 2016 [4 favorites]

DIY spa time. Fizzy bath bomb or long shower, your favorite lotions and oils when you get out, followed by giving yourself a pedicure.
posted by ewok_academy at 10:03 AM on November 23, 2016

Plan a special meal for yourself (whether you order in, go out, or cook doesn't matter). Get out for a long walk or drive. Set a challenge to yourself to do five random acts of kindness (get a few gift cards for McDonalds or a coffee place to give to someone who looks like they also need a pick me up on the holiday, take extra change for parking meters if they are in use that day, pay for the person behinds you in line's coffee at Starbucks, shovel someone elses driveway, bake cookies and take them to your local firehall/ems station). Generally give someone else something to be thankful for. If you are religious (or even if you are not, but enjoy some aspect of the service) pick a service to attend and just enjoy the company of people and the music, locally many churches hold a 'Thanksgiving Service'. You could also use part of the day to get ready for your friendsgiving in the spirit that tomorrow is just a day (and a break from work), but your 'real' thanksgiving is Saturday.
posted by Northbysomewhatcrazy at 10:04 AM on November 23, 2016 [1 favorite]

One of my happiest Thanksgivings was spent alone. Travel plans had fallen through for various reasons, friends were out of town, etc. I was bummed in the days before, but I woke up on Turkey Day actually feeling surprisingly happy, and it wound up a good day. Why?

* Pie baked the day before, so day spent eating, not working
* Crock pot stew, started the night before and ready c. 10:00 a.m.
* New book I was eager to read that I waited to start until Thanksgiving a.m.
* I realized that I was alone, but had no stress, which really helped!
posted by cupcakeninja at 12:06 PM on November 23, 2016 [1 favorite]

Streamed a whole bunch of mystery science theater episodes to my tv set while I cooked myself a ridiculously complicated side dishes to go with my prime rib. Ate myself into a food coma. Napped then ate leftovers. Best thanksgiving ever.
posted by wwax at 12:19 PM on November 23, 2016

If you happen to be anywhere near Washington DC, the Smithsonian museums (including the zoo) are open.
posted by une_heure_pleine at 4:47 PM on November 23, 2016

Obligatory: How to be Alone [previously]
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 5:34 PM on November 23, 2016 [1 favorite]

I'm currently housesitting solo, and this is the second time I've done Thanksgiving this way. I'm reading a book, playing my music loud, watching stuff on Netflix and walking in the woods with the dogs that aren't my dogs. Enjoying the view of the bay from their living room. I might go the beach later. It's relaxing and nice. Later, I'll have smoked fish and cheese and crackers. And a little whiskey because that's nice too. :-)
posted by RedEmma at 10:31 AM on November 24, 2016

« Older It's not kosher, but we're cool   |   Beginner cybersecurity, UK edition, Part II Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.