Now that November is here, it’s time to start thinking and planning for Thanksgiving. Don’t go all nutso on me, just spend 20 minutes thinking it through.
1. Think through your Thanksgiving.
If you’ve never served up a Thanksgiving meal before, take some time to consider how you want to plan a big dinner and enjoy it. Resist the impulse to be so ambitious that you don’t enjoy your day. Think about how to find that balance of creating a wonderful meal for your family but not creating too much stress.
Last year, at the risk of sacrilege, I ditched the whole bird notion and bought a turkey breast and chicken legs instead. Everyone was happy; the oven wasn’t tied up for hours on end; we didn’t waste dark meat that we don’t like. Triple win. I’m doing the same thing this year.
Keep an eye on Good Cheap Eats’ Thanksgiving stream this month. I’m going to be sharing new recipes for each course (pictured above). I am particularly smitten with the homemade cranberry sauce. Oh my! It is so good and super easy to make.
2. Keep your budget in mind.
Hosting a Thanksgiving meal doesn’t have to break the bank. There are so many strategies to help you prepare a delicious Thanksgiving meal on a dime. Take some time to plan ahead and see how you can save money while still creating a memorable meal for your friends and family.
If you know what you want to cook early in the month, you’ll be able to shop the sales in the coming weeks instead of paying full pop right when you need it.
3. Assemble your recipes and create a plan of attack.
Choosing what recipes to make for Thanksgiving can be so much fun. Whether you make the same traditional recipes every year or like to mix things up with new ones picked from magazines or your favorite blog, you’ll need to get just a bit organized to pull it all off on Turkey Day.
Planning sheets can make things so much easier. Use these free printable sheets to make quick work of organizing your meal and creating a meal timeline:
- Holiday Dinner Plan – This printable will help you organize what recipes you plan to use, where the recipes are located, and what ingredients you’ll need to make it all happen.
- Holiday Dinner Timeline – Getting a multi-course meal on the table in a timely fashion takes a bit of choreography. You’ve got to plan your steps. Work backwards from serving time and create your timeline. If too many dishes need to be in the oven at the same time, you need to rethink your plan.
What’s your plan for Thanksgiving?
Are you cooking or letting someone else do it?
With the busy family in mind, I’ve provided recipes, to-do lists, children’s activity sheets, planning pages, gift ideas, and step-by-step tutorials for creating homemade gifts. Grab your copy today.