Set a festive mood for your holiday dinner by offering a toast to the wonderful family and friends who have gathered at your Thanksgiving table. At the same time, tantalize them with delectable canapés to whet their appetite before the feast begins.

A Toast to the Holidays

Poinsettia Cocktail

This classic orange-and-cranberry flavored cocktail has a pretty rose-tinged tint that adds a beautiful blush of color to your dinner table.  Light, crisp, and fizzy, this holiday drink packs a lot of fruity flavor. Quick and easy to prepare, this cocktail is mixed directly in the drinking glass and doesn’t require precise measurements.

Poinsettia cocktails on dinner table

Poinsettia for cocktails and for holiday decor

Although recipe variations abound, this classic Poinsettia formula by TheKitchn begins by pouring two ounces of chilled cranberry juice and half an ounce of Cointreau in a champagne flute.  Top up with champagne or sparkling white wine, and garnish with a twist of orange and a fresh cranberry.

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No Thanksgiving dinner table is complete without a centerpiece. Wow your guests with any of Treetopia’s picks for pretty centerpieces that you can make at home.

Fall Tealight Holder from Poppy Paperie

This earthy Thanksgiving table centerpiece from Poppy Paperie is perfect for welcoming the charm of fall into your home. It’s easy to make and is quite affordable too. All you need to do is cover a metal tray with pattern paper, and decorate it with leaf cut-outs, some ribbons, and a couple of buttons.  Fill the base container with pebbles, tea votives, and votive cups, and you’ve got yourself an impressive centerpiece.

Fall Lantern from Sweet Something Designs

Spread a warm glow across your Thanksgiving feast with a beautiful fall lantern that makes an easy focal point.  To make this table centerpiece decoration, Sweet Something Designs dressed up a simple lantern with a burlap ribbon, fall foliage, berries, and pine cones. You can also use a decorative birdcage or even a birdhouse. Candles of varying heights complete the look.

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If your family and guests are tired of the same old Thanksgiving fare, it’s time to spice things up. Tickle their taste buds by accompanying your traditional turkey with a variety of classic side dishes jazzed up with exciting, new flavors. Try these simple and easy recipes to give your holiday feast a delicious modern twist.

Butternut Squash and Cider Soup

A hot bowl of hearty soup is a great way to whet your dinner guests’ appetites. This Butternut Squash and Cider soup is rich and creamy, and has a wonderful layer of zesty apple flavor. The mild curry powder adds a touch of spiciness that’s perfect for cold weather months.

White bowl of butternut squash soup with parsley garnish
Apples and curry make for a delicious butternut squash and cider soup

The recipe specifies that you use sweet McIntosh or Delicious apples, but feel free to substitute them with Honey Crisp or Granny Smith apples if you prefer a little tartness. Make sure to use plain apple cider and not the spiced variety to get that pure apple taste. Serve this soup with pumpernickel croutons to add a bit of crunch and a sprinkling of chives for color.

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Cooked Turkey
Image by Njvack

With only a few days left before Thanksgiving, we’re all getting ready to stuff ourselves with excellent food while attempting to avoid answering overly personal questions. Of course, Thanksgiving isn’t complete without a delectably juicy and absolutely awesome turkey on the table. You can even imagine the spirit of Thanksgiving whispering “you complete me” to the turkey à la Jerry Maguire. But how did the turkey become the symbol of Thanksgiving, anyway, and in how many artery-clogging ways can you prepare a turkey?

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We usually celebrate Thanksgiving with a feast surrounded by our families and filled with joyful conversation. After being thankful for the meal and the time spent with the family at dinner, avoid prodding questions from family members with some trivia about Thanksgiving. Here are some to get you started:

roast turkey thanksgiving table

Thanksgiving is a Pilgrim Celebration

No, it’s not a Pilgrim’s celebration, but a “pilgrim” celebration. Thanksgiving has been celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November since Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a bill proclaiming that day as a national Thanksgiving holiday, but it took more than 300 years before that date was finally officiated. Thanksgiving moved from a three-day feast during the harvest season to the third Thursday of December, then from February 19, by order of George Washington, to any day the governor of the state declared it. By the time Thanksgiving finally settled on the fourth Thursday of November in 1941 by Abraham Lincoln and his successors, it had moved through the calendar, much like a pilgrim on a quest for a settlement.

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