Things to do over Thanksgiving if you don’t celebrate November 8, 2022 — by Sanjoli Gupta Photo by Sanjoli GuptaThe wall hanging my sister and I made during Thanksgiving Break! A comprehensive guide of activities to help calm an otherwise busy semester.Thanksgiving: A tradition revolving around food and gratitude where we get three days off to celebrate. Alas, the short break doesn’t impact me all that much considering I don’t celebrate. Don’t get me wrong — I love pie and expressing thanks. But my family has never been into a large dinner or meeting up with friends over the week, so here are a few of my suggestions on alternative activities to do during Thanksgiving. Try cooking new foods Thanksgiving has its staple foods: pumpkin pie with cranberry sauce and roasted turkey with rosemary and mashed potatoes. But trying to cook one of these with a twist can not only help shape your non-existent culinary skills, but also help you feel less left out while everyone celebrates. Maybe try to cook Baklava (a crispy Turkish pastry) instead of the traditional pie, or attempt to cook butter chicken instead of a roast turkey. Of course, if cooking really isn’t your thing, there’s always Doordash. Go see the Monarch Butterflies Natural Bridges, a California State reserve in Santa Cruz, is home to the monarch butterflies around this time of year and watching their colorful wings fill the trees is sure to make your day. Christmas decorations It’s never too early to deck the hallways with red and green tinsel and cozy up with a cup of hot chocolate for Home Alone. Getting a Christmas tree from Summer Winds Nursery in Campbell is just what you need to get into the holiday spirit. Start a big art project I’m not artistic at all. The point isn’t to create something beautiful, but to spend time focusing on something for yourself or bond with your siblings. Last Thanksgiving, my sister and I embarked on a journey to create an elaborate wall hanging using yarn and a wooden post. Since art isn’t one of my strengths, we used a kit from a craft store to help us out with instructions. Cutting yarn, working to create perfect edges and choosing colors was calming and provided a well needed break from the hustle of school. Using a Darn Good Yarn or Love Crafts DIY kit is just the way to go! Try an Escape Room What better way to spend thanksgiving than spending an hour locked in a room with your friends trying to get out. Escape room can get your gears turning and can be a lot of fun to participate in with your friends. According to its website, the Omescape Escape Room in San Jose is ranked as the best in the Bay Area- go check it out! Ending Note Not celebrating Thanksgiving doesn’t mean you can’t have fun during the break. Whether it be trying new foods, going shopping, exploring your artistic side or studying, you can make Thanksgiving break memorable and productive even without the traditional experiences.