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Your guide to Thanksgiving: Getting along with family, turkey tips, football schedule

By Brian Murphy

bmurphy@mcclatchy.com

It’s Thanksgiving, a day to give thanks for all the blessings in your life — large and small.

President Abraham Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday in 1863, in the midst of the Civil War.

“The year that is drawing toward its close has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies,” Lincoln said.

If Lincoln could find something to be thankful for in the middle of the Civil War, then surely we — in these divided United States – can find something for which to be thankful.

Like this 8-year-old.

For many, it’s a day of headache-inducing travel, gut-busting food consumption, couch-lounging football watching and, maybe, some early holiday shopping. So here’s a guide to help you out with all of it.

How to not kill each other

The election showed just how divided Americans are politically. So Thanksgiving dinner is bound to include people with various political views and differing opinions on President-elect Donald Trump’s victory.

Some reading material:

How to talk about race and politics at Thanksgiving dinner

Talk about the turkey. Talk about football. But DO NOT talk about the election.

Surviving Thanksgiving when you hate how your family voted

Will Trump and Clinton divide families at Thanksgiving?

StoryCorps urges conversations on election this Thanksgiving

Let’s eat

Ok, now that we’ve got that out of the way — let’s talk turkey.

President Obama pardoned his last turkeys Wednesday. Tater and Tot (yes, those are their names) will live out their lives on in the Animal and Poultry Sciences Department at Virginia Tech.

But what about the bird on your table? Here are a few tips for cooking the turkey just right.

Get Thanksgiving right with this how-to guide

The ultimate Thanksgiving turkey with a recipe for a crisp apple-scented roast turkey

A Thanksgiving without the turkey? Sacrilege! But consider these options

Perfect Thanksgiving is really all about the gravy

• Leftovers? Here are a few ideas for the day after tomorrow — and beyond

Thursday’s football schedule (all times Eastern):

If you’re going to play football on Thanksgiving or Thanksgiving weekend, be careful. Visits to the hospital relating to backyard football injuries spike this weekend, according to FiveThirtyEight.com.

If you’re going to be watching, though, there’s a Thanksgiving Day triple-header from the NFL, as well as a college game, in case you prefer that brand of football.

NFL

Minnesota at Detroit, 12:30 p.m. (CBS)

Washington at Dallas, 4:30 p.m. (FOX)

Pittsburgh at Indianapolis, 8:30 p.m. (NBC)

NCAA

LSU at Texas A&M, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN)

The college action heats up Friday and Saturday with a slew of rivalry games, including No. 3 Michigan at No. 2 Ohio State (Saturday at noon on ABC).

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