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San Marcos High School ~ Santa Barbara, CA

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Thanksgiving Crafts, Recipes, and Fun

First off, Happy Thanksgiving! However you celebrate, I hope you enjoy a nice meal and are able to share all the things you are thankful for. In the Thanksgiving spirit, please enjoy some holiday cheer by trying out these festive crafts/recipes!

Thanksgiving Craft: Happy Hand Turkey

Inspired by A Dab Of Glue Will Do on Pinterest


  • A blank sheet of paper
  • A pencil
  • A pen
  • I used a black felt tip pen
  • Something to color with
  • I used crayons, but colored pencils or markers will work just as well
  • Things you are thankful for


Step 1) Draw a classic hand turkey, outlining your hand in pencil on a blank sheet of paper. 

Step 2) Color your turkey in. 

You can stick to more traditional colors like I did, or go crazy and make a unique rainbow turkey. 

Step 3) Add details; a beak, eyes, the gobbler, and feet. 

I drew the details in crayon, then outlined them in pen.

Step 3) Outline the turkey in pen. 

I think this is an important step to make your turkey pop. As you can see, I messed up on the lines a bit but it’s not the end of the world.  

Step 4) Write down things you are thankful for in each of his feathers. 

I wrote everything in pencil first then outlined it in black because I wanted to make sure the spelling was correct, but if you’re feeling confident, go right ahead. 

Step 5) Hang your turkey up to display! It deserves to be shown off. 

Thanksgiving Recipe: Pecan Pie Cookies

I found this recipe last year after Thanksgiving, and have been waiting to try it this whole time! Here is the link to the website where I found it:


  • 1 prepared single pie crust 
  • As the recipe suggested, I used a Pillsbury crust which worked well
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup of chopped pecans
  • ½ cup of packed brown sugar’
  • ¼ cup of corn syrup
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • Optional: ¼ cup semi sweet or milk chocolate chips for decorating

*I was able to make 16 cookies, so expect a number around there. 


Step 1: Preheat oven to 400 degrees

I did this later, while I was filling my cookies

Step 2: In a large nonstick pan, combine the butter, pecans, brown sugar, corn syrup, salt, and eggs

Make sure to mix your eggs up before adding into the pan. I didn’t and there were little chunks of semi cooked egg yolk because I turned the heat on and didn’t stir for a bit. To avoid that, either stir everything right away, or whisk your eggs beforehand. 

Step 3: Cook on the stovetop over medium heat just until thickened (you don’t want it dry, just slightly thickened, about the consistency of pudding)

I have no tips for this, just eyeball it. I actually had my mom help me with this step, because she could tell right away when it was done enough. 

Step 4: Remove from heat and set aside.

Step 5: Unroll dough and using a 3 inch cookie cutter, cut out circles. Gently fold about ⅛-¼ inch up on the edges. 

I used a 2 ½ inch circular cookie cutter and it turned out fine. Also, I tried multiple different edge patterns to be decorative. They all sunk down while baking, so it doesn’t really matter. I mean, try to roll the edges up, but know that they won’t stay like that. Also, once you have cut as many circles as you can out of the crust, roll it out again and cut some more. 

Step 6: Spoon 1 tablespoon of the pecan mixture into each circle

I had extra filling left over. It was a good snack. 

Step 7: Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet (it’s important to line it) and bake for 8 minutes or so until filling is just set. 

With this step, a catastrophe happened. I’m not sure if you were supposed to prebake the dough I used before filling it, or if I should have let the dough come to room temperature beforehand. Regardless, my poor dough didn’t cook all the way to a crisp golden brown. It rose a bit, and started to cook, but it wasn’t enough. In all seriousness, my cookies are fine. The filling is great, but the dough is a bit off. Oh well. 

Step 8: Remove from the oven and let them cool on a wire rack

Step 9: Place chocolate chips in a small Ziplock bag. Put them in the microwave for about 15 seconds or until melted. Snip off a tiny corner of the baggie and drizzle chocolate over the cookies. Let cool. 

I don’t know if something’s wrong with my microwave, but it took a lot longer than 15 seconds for my chocolate chips to melt. Also, I left the Ziplock bag open so the warm air can circulate inside, that seemed to work for me. 

Step 10: ENJOY!

Although my cookies weren’t perfect, they sure taste good! Definitely try this recipe if you want to make something simple and still get that pecan pie taste. If you’re not totally hooked on pecan pie, try these. They are simple enough that if you don’t like them it’s not a waste, and a good way to get acquainted with the pecan pie taste.  I’m a huge fan of pecan pie, and these are 10/10 in my book. 

Thanksgiving Fun: Pumpkin Spice Sugar Body Scrub 

I found this simple sugar scrub recipe at the website below and added some ingredients to bring the fall festivity!

How to Make a Sugar Scrub: A Step-by-Step Guide + 25 Recipe Ideas


  • 1/4 cup of oil. You can use coconut oil, olive oil, or any other oil in your pantry.
  • I used olive oil and while it is a pantry staple, it does give off its signature scent. 
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • If you have pumpkin spice, that’s great and will work, but I worked with what I already had
  • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

If you have pumpkin spice essential oil, put in 3 drops, or more if needed. I only have citrus oils, and obviously that wouldn’t work, so I used vanilla extract to cover up the smell, and add to the holiday cheer.


Step 1: Put all your ingredients in a bowl, mix well

Step 2: Use the scrub, it is totally safe for anywhere, just maybe not next to your eyes. 

Step 3: Store in an airtight container to use later.

I totally recommend making this scrub! It is so simple! You can adjust it for other occasions by adding in various essential oils or ingredients to the base (the sugar and oil). As well as changing out flavours (I guess that’s what it would be called) you can switch from sugar to salt. I did some research and found out that salt is more abrasive than sugar, so if you have tougher skin and want a deeper clean, try substituting some salt. This is also totally edible! I tried some and it tasted glorious. So, don’t worry about it getting in your mouth, it’s totally non-toxic and safe. 

Thanks so much for reading this article! I hope you try out some recipes/crafts. If you do, post a picture of your attempt on Instagram and tag @sanmarcosroyals. Have fun with your fall festivities, and again, Happy Thanksgiving!

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About the Contributor
Elizabeth Leka
Elizabeth Leka, Opinion Editor
Elizabeth is a senior at San Marcos High School. Opinion is her favorite section, and she has essentially monopolized it for two years now. She loves anything sweet, reading, playing board games (like Monopoly), and spontaneously going on walks. Her favorite subjects in school are history, and of course journalism.
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Thanksgiving Crafts, Recipes, and Fun