Are you ready for Thanksgiving Smarties?! For the first time ever, we are hosting Thanksgiving dinner and I am so excited. Nervous? Not one bit. In anticipation of a major holiday, most hosts and hostesses are gearing up for the chaos, stress, and cooking logistics that come alongside the joy of being able to stay home. Not in this house, my friends.
Holidays seem to evoke an element of stress that we have normalized as a society. What if we didn’t worry so much over the details and instead just enjoyed the holiday? As with most things in our house, we have been working hard to make things simpler. Less is more these days and that includes holidays! So sharpen those knives and prep those turkeys but don’t forget these steps to keep Thanksgiving simple this year.
It’s never a good idea to cram for a test the night before, so don’t leave everything to the night before Thanksgiving. Menu plan ahead of time, make your desserts and bread in advance. Shop for all your ingredients and then group them together with the serving dish you’ll be using. On the day of, you can grab the dish and ingredients in one stop to make it easier.
Set your table during the week before, unless you’re like me and have a bunch of little kids. Then maybe keep your table décor to a minimum.
Clear your fridge out so you’re not playing refrigerator Jenga all day. Move unneeded clutter off of your counters and work spaces. If it isn’t necessary for Thanksgiving, it can live somewhere else for a little while. The more you do ahead of time, the less you’ll have to scramble to do as Thanksgiving approaches.
Pride is a fickle thing, my friends, and Thanksgiving is not the time to try to do it all yourself. Delegate menu items to guests who are offering to help. I repeat… Don’t make everything yourself. My mother-in-law loves to make turkeys, so guess what I’m not making? The turkey! Menu items that are easy to transport might be dessert, bread, casseroles, and salads!
Save the deep clean for later
Deep cleaning before having a huge group of people come to your house seems logical at the time, but the better time for it is after your guests leave. Tidy up and do a basic cleaning but save the big time cleaning effort for after the holiday.
No one will enter your house and immediately look at your baseboards so focus your energy on other preparations ahead of time and once all the spills have happened then clean those baseboards as much as you’d like.
Keep it all in perspective
Thanksgiving is all about being thankful, not about the food or the decorations. If we spend all our time and energy on all the extras but not the true meaning of the holiday we are missing the point. Spend extra time with those you love and less worrying if the sweet potatoes have the correct marshmallow ratio.
As my daughter says “Thanksgiving is about celebrating the Pilgrims” and I’m pretty sure the perfection of our dinner table has nothing to do with that. So let the little details stay little this year and enjoy the most important part of the holiday: people you love, good food to eat, and lots to be grateful for this season.
Happy Thanksgiving Smarties!