If you’re like me you are preparing yourself for next week, aka the fattest holiday of the year– Thanksgiving. You might already be having dreams of your mom’s pumpkin pie recipe, stuffing, cheesy mashed potatoes, juicy turkey and all the other trimmings. It never ceased to amaze me how all aspects of the meal were prepped, cooked and ready by the time dinner came around; which for some reason is always before 3 p.m. (at least in my household on Thanksgiving). By 4 p.m. everyone feels full to the point of explosion and swears they can’t eat another bite! But then, the pumpkin pie timer goes off and you smell the deliciousness of it and all of a sudden you have room for a piece, or five. Then, you go take a glorious nap and eat another meal when you wake up–this really is the greatest holiday.
But, while most people have “stationary” jobs and are able to spend their free-time with loved ones this season; however, if you’re completing an assignment away from home during this upcoming holiday season you may not be blessed with the same opportunity. Sure, travel nurse jobs have their perks, but it can be difficult for anyone to feel lonely this time of year, don’t fret–we’re here to provide you with some ideas on how to make your Thanksgiving feel at home!
Thanksgiving Away From Home: Tips for Travel Nurses
Have a virtual dinner with your family
Since you can’t spend your holiday dinner physically sitting around the table with your family, set up your computer, FaceTime, tablet or whatever else that has a webcam, have your family do the same and have a virtual dinner! This will allow you to join in on conversations around the table–tune out when things get heated, like at any family gathering– and not feel lonely! Also, you get to share your creative version of Thanksgiving dinner.
Have a ‘friends-giving’
Having a ‘friends-giving’ is actually quite great, it’s kind of like a potluck. You invite all of your friends over, and everyone prepares (or buys) their favorite dish and you all enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner together! This is especially nice because of two things: 1) you don’t have to deal with the family drama like at home and 2) you only have to cook (or buy) one thing!!
Create a new tradition
Spending the holidays away from family can actually be less stressful. Think about it: when you’re stuck with traditions that you have been doing since the dawn of time, there’s a lot of pressure to keep them going as good or better than the year before. There’s a laundry-list of things to do like baking 12 dozen cookies for the neighbors, picking out the best tree, etc. Do something new to rock-out this holiday season away from home. Maybe go to a hip Asian-fusion restaurant instead of slaving over a hot oven prepping the old-fashioned holiday bird. Then, for dessert, why don’t you swing by a martini bar or karaoke lounge? Being alone for the holidays may be different than you’re used to, but there’s no reason it should be any less fun!
Chain-Restaurants Open on Holidays:
- Buffalo Wild Wings
- Waffle House
- Boston Market
- Panda Express
- Taco Bell
- Burger King
- Jack in the Box
- PF Chang’s
- Cracker Barrel
- Dunkin’ Donuts
- Red Robin
If an altered Thanksgiving still can’t satisfy your holiday cheer, then consider removing yourself from the celebration completely. Head out for a hike or run and enjoy the benefit of not consuming 12 times the “daily recommended” calories you would have otherwise consumed. If you don’t want to think of the holiday at all, avoid watching television that will be loaded with food specials and gobble-themed commercials. Instead read the book you’ve been dying to open or binge watch you favorite series on Netflix. It’s your choice whether to celebrate or not; if you don’t like the idea of having a holiday without your family, then don’t!
If you just can’t get your family to bring Thanksgiving dinner to you and you’re unable to make it to them, celebrate it on a day that you actually can. It will be just as special and focus solely on the main reason for the season: family.