Some Tips For Your Thanksgiving Dinner 

Thanksgiving Day is celebrated in many ways.  In the United States it is a day to give thanks for all the things that are important to us and for all the things for which we are grateful.   For many it is a time to enjoy a delicious dinner in the afternoon or evening and enjoy the company of family, friends and loved ones.  In the morning many people attend a worship service to express their thanks. 

In addition to dinner many families have other traditions they follow on Thanksgiving.  Some will spend the afternoon in front of the television enjoying football games.  Playing board games is popular with some groups. Others may be more active and take a walk in the park or a hike in the woods or engage in a game of touch football.  It is traditional for some families for the women (and perhaps some men) to get together and plan their shopping strategy for “Black Friday”.  Some may even venture out for shopping late Thanksgiving evening when the stores open. 

If you are the person hosting the Thanksgiving feast you still want to be able to enjoy the day with your friends and family.  Putting together a Thanksgiving meal takes planning and work.  The best idea is to decide on your menu and then do as much preparation beforehand as possible.  Some families hold to the tradition of having the same exact meal each year for the holiday and if this is the case then you don’t need to worry about what you are going to serve. 

The less food you leave to prepare on the big day the better.  Do your shopping for non-perishable items early so you have them on hand and don’t need to purchase any more than necessary during the crush at the grocery store the day or two before Thanksgiving. 

If you plan to order any foods such as a smoked turkey, duck or a ham place your order well ahead of time.  If it does not hurt your sense of pride you might want to order some of your other dishes like bread, pies or other desserts, salads, finger foods, etc. already prepared and save some of the work for yourself.  You probably don’t want to have everything catered, but having a few items prepared offsite will lessen your work load.  If any guests offer to bring a dish accept with thanks.  

Wash and cut up your vegetables a day ahead of time so they are ready for cooking.  Check the dishes you plan to use for your meal to be sure they are clean.  If they have been sitting in the cupboard since last year they may need a trip through the dishwasher.  Set the table a day ahead of time. 

Recruit some help from those around you.  Children or other adults can help with the chopping, washing, table setting, and all the many other things that need to be done in preparation for a festive meal. 

On the day of your Thanksgiving dinner it is probably a good idea to keep the animals away from the dining area.  You don’t want to take the chance that an animal will run off with some of the food you’ve prepared for your guests. 

You want to be able to enjoy your Thanksgiving celebration with your family and friends.  You don’t want to feel stressed from being rushed with preparations.  You want to have the peace of mind that comes from having everything under control and planning is important to achieve this goal.