Can you believe it’s almost Thanksgiving? The time for family, friends, gratitude, togetherness, and STRESS! I enjoy Thanksgiving, but last year I was so stressed when it came to prepping and cooking, that I barely made it through the holiday without dropping from exhaustion and stress. But this year I already know for a fact that I am going to enjoy the holiday, and to make that happen I plan to simplify the whole Thanksgiving planning and prep process.
I know first hand that if you are the one that is in charge of preparing the big Thanksgiving meal at your home, it can be stressful. But the holiday’s shouldn’t be stressful! It’s supposed to be a time of celebration and being thankful. Panicking about what or how many side dishes to have or how the table settings look is kind of silly, when you think about it. There are plenty of things in life to be stressed about, but what and how to cook a meal in celebration of thankfulness shouldn’t be one of them.
Today I am going to shine a little perspective on the situation and share a few tips and tricks with you on how you can have a healthy and stress free Thanksgiving.
- Make a Plan. Take at least 20 minutes and map out what main dishes, side dishes, and desserts you are going to serve.
- Less Is More. I enjoy leftovers, however, Thanksgiving leftovers can be bit extreme to the point where you still have way too much leftover, even after you send some home with your family and friends. No one wants to throw food away or even be eating the same things for a week after Thanksgiving, so why stress yourself out with making so much food that might not be eaten? Instead of making 4 pies, make the 2 popular favorites. Making one big salad is plenty to feed a crowd. And please don’t stone me here! But, do you really need appetizers right before you eat a big feast? Just skip those! That way you will save yourself stress, time, money, and wasted food.
- Stick With The Classics. I just love trying new things, especially when it comes to food! But, the holiday’s might not be the time to debut those Baked Pears with Gorgonzola and Honey that you saw on Pinterest. While those Baked Pears would be an awesome addition to your Thanksgiving menu, how bummed would you be if they turned out disasterously and you have to pitch them without a back up plan. If you want to try something new, give the recipe a test run a few days ahead of time.
- Delegate, delegate, delegate. If you are the one hosting the big Thanksgiving meal? You don’t have to cook or even prepare all the dishes. In fact, you shouldn’t be expected to. Have each of your guests bring some kind of side dish. This way no one is carrying the weight of cooking a full meal and everyone gets to enjoy each other’s creations. So, if someone asks what they can bring, don’t politely brush them off, be honest and tell them that Green Bean Casserole or a fresh fruit salad would be a great addition to your meal.
- Buy Ahead. Buy all of your staple goods at least 2 weeks before Thanksgiving. This way you will still be able to take advantage of any sales, but you will avoid the crowds. You will still need to go to the store to purchase your fresh goods, but it will be a much smaller trip and one that can be tackled easier.
- Utilize Your Crockpot to save stove space. Did you know that you can make sweet potato casserole, reheat mashed potatoes, or even make your main dish in the crockpot? Using your crockpot allows you to save stove space.
- Start Creating your centerpiece now. There are so many cool ideas on Pinterest for Thanksgiving centerpieces and many of them include items that can be bought and assembled ahead of time.
- Set The Table a Day or so Before. Just get this task done and out of the way. That way this is one less task to worry about on the big day.
- Clean As You Go. Fill your sink with hot soapy water and have your dishwasher empty. The more clean up you can do while you are working means the less time you will spend cleaning up after.
- Don’t Forget to Have Fun! If you are stressed out, then more than likely your guests will be stressed out too. But if you are in a the holiday spirit, then so will your guests. Besides, having everyone in a good mood, means less drama if something doesn’t go as planned.
Lastly, please remember to soak in the true meaning of the holiday. Remember to GIVE THANKS! You should be thankful if you have a roof over your head, if you know where your next meal is coming from, and have people to love and that love you back! Thanksgiving is a day (along with every single day) to appreciate all of that. The food and decorations do not define the holiday, it is the people you are blessed enough to spend it with that do.
Do you know what food you plan on having on your Thanksgiving table? Don’t stress! I have tons of ideas for you in my Great Thanksgiving Roundup
Have you even started planning your Thanksgiving yet? Join The Kitchen Revival Community today, and you will receive my FREE 2 page Thanksgiving Planning Guide. Click on the image below to join.