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Thanksgiving Without Tears

Cooking is the easy part. To actually enjoy the holiday, have these essentials on hand.


Balancing Act
It always seems like a great idea at first, but playing those traditional Thanksgiving games of Trivial Pursuit (or Monopoly or Risk) always stretches on past entertainment into irritant. For a pre-turkey activity that’s just as inclusive but a lot faster paced, set up the Bamboleo ($74.95 at Compleat Strategist, 11 E. 33rd St., nr. Fifth Ave.; 212-685-3880). It goes like this: 25 slippery wooden objects are balanced on a platter, which is balanced on a sphere, which is balanced on a pillar. Each player removes one piece from the teetering platter until it topples; whoever has the most pieces at the end wins. It’s simple enough for kids, weirdly wobbly enough to keep adults interested, and a lot more fun after a few glasses of wine.


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