Based on a non-scientific survey of Millennials (aka, asking people I know in real life or on Facebook/Twitter), here are 10 modern–and old school–traditions that Generation Y was particularly thankful for yesterday.
While lots of Millennials still go home for the holidays, spending time with blood relatives isn’t the most important thing on Thanksgiving to this generation. Generation Y has embraced the concept of “Friendsgiving”: having the holiday with people you love, related or not. This twist on the traditions stems from not being able to get home for the holidays due to work, cost or distance, and occasionally just perfering to avoid family drama. Friendsgiving has all the same elements of a family Thanksgiving: sharing good food with great people.
Technology like snapchat, what’s app, and Skype have truly altered the way some people connect with family during the holidays. For family members who are far away, across the country or possibly overseas, these new technologies can help everyone stay connected no matter the distance.
3) Cyber Monday
Forget the possible agony of Black Friday, lots of people, no matter their age, are opting to shop online this year. While some people will always love the thrill of the hunt the day after Thanksgiving, plenty of Millennials are super thankful for the option of Cyber Monday.
From Grandma’s famous stuffing, to a new twist on the bacon-wrapped turkey, the next generation enjoys Thanksgiving kitchen time. No frozen dinners this season, Millennials are measuring, sampling and creating home-cooked recipes.
Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram: Millennials are sharing about their holiday. It could be pictures of the perfect pie, family photo ops, or just taking a moment to wish everyone you know a great day. (I even saw a few “help, how do I fix these mashed potatoes before my parents get here??” type posts.) Social media is not a distraction, but an enhancement of the holiday.
Cooking isn’t just for the host. Lots of Millennials invite their friends to bring their own favorite dish to Thanksgiving. Menus are no longer traditional, they are a chance to share and experience new things with people you love.
Generation Y still loves a good football game. They will continue to hang out in from of the TV together after their meal and cheer til everyone slips into a food coma.
8) Craft Brews
With all those new recipes comes new drinks to try it with. Just scan through your Facebook and check out all the pictures of Thanksgiving beers, special sparkling wines, or other holiday themed adult beverages.
9) Modern Family
Many Millennials lived through divorces, cross country moves, and other lifestyle changes during their childhood. This blended, “modern family” style makes many people in this generation open to new ways to celebrate their holiday. Some plan two Thanksgiving meals, incorporate multiple traditions into their day or just feel comfortable expanding the definition of family.
10) Starting a New Tradition
Twenty-somethings are finding their way in adulthood and making decisions about how THEIR Thanksgiving will go. These decisions are exciting, and everyone approaches them differently. Some Millennials enjoy the old traditions passed down for generations. Others like quirky, nontraditional options on the holiday. A lot of these traditions involve making something from scratch or giving back to charity (see #GivingTuesday). Each one is personalized. But the thing they all have in common is the spirit of giving and family, because that Thanksgiving tradition will never change.
Just one last thing I had to mention… Many, many Millennials complained about this one Thanksgiving tradition, so I felt compelled to include it in this post. Here is the one thing none of us ARE NOT THANKFUL FOR:
Those cute-sy-little mass Thanksgiving greetings via email, Facebook messenger or text…
JUST STOP SENDING THEM.
No one likes an impersonal message with an inspirational quote. Especially when you don’t BBC everyone.
DO NOT DO IT.