You can start shopping for your Thanksgiving Day meal now. It’s a way to spread out the chores ahead and maybe even save a little money.
Scan the ads and see if any of the nonperishable items you’ll need — paper goods, soft drinks, for example — are on sale and stock up now. You might want to store them where the family won’t get into them so they’ll still be there when you need them on Thanksgiving.
Next, check your pantry. If you’re running low on brown sugar or say, pumpkin pie spice, buy it now. Nothing stops the flow of production on Thanksgiving Eve faster than having to stop and run to the store for an essential ingredient.
Here’s a recap of our tips of what you should be doing to have a stress-free Thanksgiving:
- Don’t miss the story on our website where pastry experts tell the rest of us to get over our fear of creating a perfect crust. (Here’s the link.) Turns out that one of the reasons our crust is less than grand might be because we’ve rushed it. Hoosier Mama’s Paula Haney told writer Lisa Shames that it’s important to give that pie crust some time. And here’s a dandy tidbit to remember: crust will work better if you make it the night before. Gives it time to settle. (And you time to get something done before Thanksgiving itself!)
- Also with this story is a list of places that are taking orders for pies if you’d rather not make your own. Some of them will stop taking orders as soon as they run out. So, you know what I’m going to say, don’t you? Decide now if you will be ordering one and do it ASAP.
- In the movie “Pieces of April,” it’s funny when she discovers the oven’s not working and the Thanksgiving turkey is inside it. Trust me, you will not be laughing on Thanksgiving Day if your oven peters out and you’ve got a dining room full of relatives waiting to eat. The time for inspecting it is now. If it’s been acting up, get someone in to repair it ASAP. And if it’s grimy, clean it. No one wants to see their holiday meal coming out of a crusty oven. Same for the appliance you’ll be using that day: hand mixer, blender, electric knife — whatever you know you will use, make sure it is working properly and clean.
- While you are looking at that oven, figure out if everything will fit in it. If not, come up with Plan B. One year I decided beforehand that I would do a vegetable stir-fry instead of an assortment of roasted veggies because there wasn’t enough room in that tiny oven of ours. Another holiday we grilled the turkey outside to free up oven space. Both were alternative plans that worked out just fine, and one reason they did was because we’d figured out beforehand what we’d be doing. We weren’t regrouping at the last minute.
- Make your guest list today and invite them. As soon as possible, determine how many will be in attendance. Once you have that number you can figure out what you need in chairs, supplies, food and liquor. Without it you’re guess-timating, which usually results in spending more than is needed.
- Give the dining room — or whatever room the meal will be in — an inspection. I don’t know about you, but my dining room table becomes the catch-all. Start clearing the table and room now so you and your guests can enjoy a meal in a clutter-free room.