Whether you celebrate with your extended family or just a small group of friends, Thanksgiving stands alone as a holiday where people of all beliefs and backgrounds can come together to break bread and be thankful. Traditions abound, and you and your family – whether by blood or by choice – can start making them now. There are the standard but commendable customs, like a game of football in the yard, running a 5K, watching sports or going around the table sharing meaningful memories and grateful thoughts. If you want to give back, try spending the morning volunteering and push your feast to the evening. Maybe you’re the creator of the lion’s share of the food; to reduce stress and include everyone, suggest a potluck where each guest brings a key component to the meal. If you’re family is … well … overwhelming, make it a point to go on a solo walk or hike prior to the day’s festivities to clear your head. Other customs to add include a communal breakfast in the morning; this way, the “hangry” folks who want their Thanksgiving grub now will have had a hearty first meal to kick off the day. If some friends and family members can’t make it, include them through video chat during toasts or another important moment. Regardless of how you celebrate, traditions are a perfect way to add sentiment to an already beloved holiday.

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