Thanksgiving is full of family traditions – good food, visiting, playing games together. While I love spending time with family for Thanksgiving, this year I’m adding a little something to our plans.
Change the Extended Family Dynamic
At a recent family get together my sister and I took our kids to a nearby park while our parents and other siblings sat on couches and talked. While at the park my sister said, “When [my husband] first joined our family he asked if all we did was sit around and eat. In his family we have a meal and then we all go out to a park or on a walk or something.”
It’s true. My extended family isn’t known for its active nature. Some families are football families or hunting families. Mine is more an eat-food-and-gossip-on-the-couch family. But they are willing. Over the years I’ve invited extended family members on camp-outs, snow days, hikes, even sand volleyball games, and occasionally they’ll come along.
This year I’m embracing the OptOutside movement started by REI to encourage my parents, siblings, nieces and nephews to get out.
For the last year I’ve been trying to emphasize experiences over items. Things that don’t contribute to better adventures aren’t worth the time, money and effort of purchasing, maintaining and storing. That’s why I’m a fan of REI’s OptOutside marketing campaign.
The OptOutside campaign encourages people to get outdoors on Black Friday, that day off after Thanksgiving that so many Americans spend shopping. REI is leading by example by closing its nearly 150 stores, and giving its employees a paid day off to enjoy outdoors.
Every year REI leads the way with an OptOutside Black Friday, ignoring the big deals and door busters in favor of sending their employees outdoors for the day. This year I’m joining in the OptOutside movement, and I’m bringing my family (as many as I can) along with me.
Beat Black Friday Giveaway Week
While I’m a fan of having fewer things, I also believe that the right gear for outdoor adventures is essential. Having good equipment can make the activity fun instead of miserable, especially when weather or kids are involved. I don’t need the newest, best, most amazing stuff, but I do need things that will help me get outdoors with my kids. Good gear is essential.
That’s why this year I’ve teamed up with some of my favorite gear companies to bring you a Beat Black Friday Gear Giveaway. The idea is to give you holiday gift ideas for all the outdoor lovers on your list, whether or not they know they love the outdoors yet.
Here’s how it’ll work. On Thursday November 17, 2016 I’ll kick off the week of giveaways with my Holiday Gift Guide Roundup. It’ll have great ideas for your outdoor crew. Plus most of the items on my list are under fifty dollars.
After that, I’ll be posting three great giveaways, each with items especially chosen for specific family members.
- Great Gifts for Outdoor Tots
- What Mountain Mom Really Wants for the Holidays
- Get Mountain Dad Outdoors
The idea is to give you a chance to win some great gear so you can get your family outdoors. Winners will be announced on Black Friday – November 25, 2016. Participating companies include Sea to Summit, Woom bikes, Oakiwear, Timolino, Liquid Hardware, Blackfire and more!
Go ahead. Start a new Thanksgiving tradition. OptOutside.