Stress Free Thanksgiving
3. Plan your guest list to determine how many people you
are going to feed. Instead of sending out elaborate
invitations, consider just picking up the phone and
calling each guest to invite them personally. You will
get the RSVP right away!
Thanksgiving is the start of the busy holiday season. It can be a stressful
time, but only if you let it. Here are a few suggestions for a stress free
right out of your gathering.|
1. The first thing to do is plan and prepare ahead of time. Sit down and make a
list of the things you need to get done. Take an inventory of your supplies,
dishes and cookware. Make sure you have everything you need. There is nothing
more stressful than finding you don't have something on the big day! Also, plan
your meal from appetizers to desserts. Make a list of the ingredients and items
needed. Don't forget to plan for leftovers. Purchasing a few disposable
containers can be handy to store leftovers for sharing with family and guests.
2. If you are having company at your house for Thanksgiving, set a date with
your family to clean the house the week before Thanksgiving. That way you will
only have to do a little touch up when the guests arrive. If you plan to have
your house professionally cleaned, make sure to book your appointment early.
4. Home decor items can get you in the spirit of the
season. If you plan to decorate, do so in early November
so you can have the entire month to enjoy the holiday.
5. If you are traveling for the holiday, prepare a
packing list in advance of your travel date. Take this
list with you on the trip and use it to repack when you
are ready to come home. Double-check all schedules and
tickets before leaving home. Keep in mind that the day
before Thanksgiving is the busiest travel day of the
year. Try to leave a few days before and a few days
after, if possible.
6. The best time to clean the refrigerator is when it is
not full and that means before the holidays. You will
need to make room for the turkey and other festive
7. Grocery stores are busy during the holiday, so buy
early to avoid long lines and crowds. Buying early will
also ensure getting the best selection. Buy some of your
food locally. You know where your food will be coming
from and you'll be supporting local business.
8. There are great alternatives available for having a
carefree Thanksgiving. Many grocery stores sell ready-
made holiday meals. Some companies even sell frozen
turkeys that are already seasoned and dressed. All you
have to do is put it in the oven and cook it. You can
also purchase a fresh turkey which does not have to be
defrosted. Not to mention, just making a reservation and
going out for dinner. When you come back to the house,
have a dessert and coffee or hot cocoa.
9. Cook, bake and create as much as possible ahead of
time. There is no need to spend all of your time in the
kitchen on Thanksgiving while everyone else is enjoying
themselves. Side dishes, pies and other items can be
made ahead-of-time-items and then frozen. When needed,
just defrost, heat and serve.
10. Consider having a potluck dinner. The hostess will
cook the turkey. Everyone who comes for dinner is
assigned a dish to share. It is fun to share recipes and
stories about the food everyone brings.
11. One of the biggest causes of stress is not getting
enough sleep. Take the time to relax and recharge your
body during the busy holiday season. A good night's
sleep will help you to feel refreshed and ready for the
12. Keep the children occupied by creating an
activity/craft area. Set up tables with paper, crayons,
pens, glue, etc. The older children can supervise. The
younger children could make name tags for the guests or
they could be shown how to creatively fold napkins. This
will keep them occupied and engaged for a while.
13. Keep everyone busy and share the workload. You do
not have to do everything yourself. Enlist family
members to help out and assign duties. Involve children
with simple jobs. Don't forget to get help when cleaning
14. Focus on what really matters. The whole point behind
gathering at Thanksgiving is to give thanks and show
appreciation. Take the time to enjoy the company of
family and friends.
Finally, after the holidays, keep the lists you put
together for organizing this Thanksgiving celebration.
You can use these lists to find areas that need
improvement so that next year's event is easier and even
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