How to do Thanksgiving...

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 495
   Posted 11/15/2007 5:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Heyya everyone...

With Thanksgiving a week away I figured that I would post how I "cope" with Thanksgiving prep and such to give some of you ideas. I know last year there was a thread dealing with how you make it as easy as possible to survive cooking a meal and still being able to move at the end of the day.

Here is my "schedule"
2 weeks before: I start by cleaning the areas of the house that dont get any use.. dusting them, and closing them up so they dont get dirty again
1-2 weeks before: I clean the other areas of the house, normally 1/2 - 1 room a day that way all it needs (hopefully) is a quick dush and vacuum a few days before
1 week before: I scrub the bathrooms - again to make it where all it needs is a quick clean
6 days: make sure that all the non-perishable is bought and stored in a bag where all the stuff for Thanksgiving is going
5 days: double check recipes to make sure my perishable list is ready to go
4 days: Get turkey thawing, buy perishables, make sure I have disposable pans for all things I'm cooking
3 days: check schedule to make sure that everything will be ready,
confirm people coming over, if we dont have it already - or didn't think of it, we ask a guest to handle it, most of the time a guest brings the drinks, a guest brings ice, and
a guest brings a snack tray to munch on. People always offer to bring stuff, most feel better if they do, so we allow them
final house cleaning - if it happens in two days - company will deal
buy perishables
2 days: after making dinner and cleaning up I set the table for Thanksgiving, also I take a disposable pan for each item I'm cooking and set it on the counter
Then I put all the prebought ingredients in that pan, along with the recipe, and at what time in the day to start it, and put it in the oven
1 day: we eat dinner out - normally a fast food or denny's somewhere
I make the pumpkin pies and get them ready
I chop all the things that I need for the next day, storing in ziplock bags labeled with what they are for
Hubby makes his turkey rub
TDay: Cereal for breakfast if no company staying over
If we have company I've bought fruit and we have fruit for breakfast with bagles
I normally spend the first part of the day in my PJ's as they are comfortable
Dressing gets put together -
Turkey gets stuffed
Turkey gets put in oven
Following the schedule things get cooked and prepared
about an hour before company a last run through is done to make sure the house is okay
Thats it :)

Doing things this way it takes the major chore of entertaining and cooking a very large meal that people always have "pre-expectations" of, and makes it easy to handle. Nothing gets left until the last minute that doesn't have to be. I spend 2-3 weeks cleaning up the house rather than trying to get it all done the few days prior. I know it's not easy if you have kids, and there is always a new mess, but this is how I do it. :) We normally have 6-10 people over for dinner - and we have since hubby was in the military and we had most of his single friends over.

I only have 7 years experience dealing with Thanksgiving and my back problems - I'm sure there are people out there who have more and have better ideas!
"When we come to the edge of the light we know, and are about to step off into the darkness of the unknown, of one thing we can be sure; either God will provide something solid to stand on... or we will be taught to fly.'"

"Cause when push comes to shove You taste what you're made of, You might bend, till you break Cause its all you can take; On your knees you look up Decide you've had enough, You get mad you get strong Wipe your hands shake it off, Then you Stand" From "Stand" by Rascal Flatts
Dx.: Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, Ulcerlative Colitis, Chronic Inflammation of the Colon, Ruptured & Fused L4-L5-S1 w/pinched nerves, Degenerative Disc Disease, Chronic Costochondritis, Back Muscle Spasms, Asthma, Benign Tremmors (hands)

New Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 11/15/2007 6:48 PM (GMT -6)   
were you live

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 11/16/2007 11:40 AM (GMT -6)   
I would lose the list on day one! Actually I'm normally a pretty organized person but we have a 'little one' living here now and it's amazing how the world goes upside-down with a one year old in the house again. But we'll make it! Hubby helps clean and I cook. Try to stay out of each other's way. Let everyone bring some of the meal and there ya go. What doesn't get done...doesn't get done.

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Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis, Insulin dependent diabetic, collapsed disk, dermatitis herpetiformus, osteo arthritis in spine and other locations.

The only difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. Albert Einstein: (1879-1955)

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13360
   Posted 11/16/2007 3:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Long before I got to where I am now, we started having T-Day at my brothers because Christmas was done at my house. Everyone brings a part of the meal this way, no one gets stuck doing the whole thing. It is so much easier that way. I would not consider having it any other way. The days of me putting on the big meals are history because its so much simplier the other way. I actually get to enjoy the day with the rest of the gang.


New Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 11/16/2007 10:50 PM (GMT -6)   
I pick up the phone and make reservations for a nice restaurant. After dinner, we go back to our house for dessert and coffee which is served on festive paper Thanksgiving plates, with a matching paper tablecloth, napkins, paper coffee cups, and plastic utensils. The desserts are a nice array of pastry and goodies which my husband picked up at the bakery that morning. I cooked for years, but those days are long over. This works nicely. The restaurant serves delicious turkey dinners with all the trimmings.
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