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Friday, November 4, 2011

Start Preparing for Thanksgiving

By Leslie Pleasants
Yes, it is the beginning of November but now is the time to start planning/organizing for your Big Thanksgiving Day!  If you are hosting it at your house you know that it can be a little stressful.  There is so much that needs to be done.  If you wait till the last minute you are going to stress yourself out and possibly stress your guests out too.  Your goal is to make everyone feel comfortable and have everything that they need available to them with out them having to ask you.  Here are some ideas for you to start doing to help you along till the big day!

1) Halloween Clearance:  Halloween just ended.  Now is the time to scoop up some of those clearance items to use for Thanksgiving.  Orange candles, Orange lights, Orange dishes/glass wear,  Plastic orange bowls,  Foam carvable pumpkins (don't carve them but you can paint them with glue and sprinkle glitter on them for a nice centerpiece),  Little trinkets/toys that you were supposed to give out for little treaters..  you can use them at the kids table.  Just make sure they don't have Halloween pictures on them.  If they do then put a sticker over them.  Garlands,  Wreaths,  Hay barrels and don't forget to pick up those mini real pumpkins.  They are usually gone by the time Thanksgiving comes around and they are wonderful for tea light holders or just for decorations!!

2) Invites:  Invites are always nice.  Either electronically or by mail.  If you are inviting people to your home for Thanksgiving you should also delegate some of the food so you do not have to do it all.  Make a list of the things that you are going to make and then make a list of food that you still need... like rolls, pop, etc..  That way they can mark down what they will bring and let you know.  That's why I like doing it via email or evite that way everyone can see it. 

3) November Calendar:  I like to make a November calendar that I post up in my pantry just for me to use.  Its great to have because I can put when to take out turkey from freezer,  when to make a pie,  Chores around the house that needs to be done, I even put times on there too...  What time to put turkey in,  Time to eat for Thanksgiving dinner,  etc...   They are like mini goals.  Makes me feel organized.  Click HERE to get your free personalized calendar

4) Weekend Before:  The weekend before is when I get a lot of the set up done.  I figure out the table arrangements and decor,  seating,  buffet table,  write out my food place cards,  get out all the serving bowls and place on my buffet table and label each one on what is going to be going in it and put the right utensil in it.   I also do a deep clean around the house (w/ husbands help).  I do all of this the weekend before so I can focus on food  and shopping during the week.  

5) Keep Them Busy:  Trying to keep everyone entertained at all times can be challenging.  Try setting up different stations in your home.   A puzzle room for those that just want a more of a quieter place.  A craft area for kids and adults (i like to have Christmas ornaments that they can paint and take home with them).  A TV room where of course you have to have the football on to keep the men entertained.  I also like to have another TV on either playing Christmas music or watching some kind of Christmas show.  :)  I have made a slide show in the past using PowerPoint and hooking my computer up to the TV and showing all the previous years of Thanksgivings.  It was a huge hit!  Then there is also the video game room area.  Those are great for the younger men (or older)...keeps them busy and away from the kitchen.  :)

These are just some of my ideas that I use to make it easier on me.  :)  This year I am having 30 people over!!  So I am planning now....  going to have every square inch of my house being used.  :)  lol  But I don't mind at all.   I just love being with my family, it is all worth it!

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