Plan Ahead

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By spreading everything out over a period of a week, preparing Thanksgiving Dinner won’t be as stressful.

There is nothing wrong with asking older (5-99) children (yours, neighbors or grandchildren) to help cut up vegetables or whatever you need help with. My children say some of their fondest memories was cutting things up for me. My grandchildren seem to enjoy helping and neighbor’s children ask to help.

Ask family and/or friends to prepare and bring certain things that they do well.   Be specific about what you want them to bring.

Play your favorite music and sing along – it’ll make you feel better.

1.      Thursday (1 week before Thanksgiving)

    1. Clean your refrigerator before you do anything else. Leave only what is necessary in it.
    2. Make your grocery list. Clip Coupons to it. Note what’s on sale where.
    3. If you already have your Turkey, put it on the bottom rack in your refrigerator to thaw.

2.       Friday or Heaven forbid – Saturday

    1. (shopping day – if you aren’t in a hurry, you won’t get upset) Eat something before you go because you will be able to think better and your hunger will not be shopping for you.  You'll save money.
    2. Put groceries away.
    3. Organize kitchen.

3.       Saturday - Organize your house and prepare it for company (whole family job). 

4.       Sunday - Rest while you have a chance. Even God took a day off. 

5.       Monday

    1. Make the cornbread and cut up the vegetables for the stuffing (store in separate bags in the Refrigerator)

6.        Tuesday

    1. Prepare the Pumpkin, Apple and/or your choice of Pies and put them in pie keepers or cover them with Saran Wrap and store in the refrigerator.

7.        Wednesday

    1. Put giblets in pot of boiling, salty water and simmer for 1½ hours.  Store in refrigerator for giblet gravy.
    2. Make the stuffing a little on the dry side to go in the bird (put in zip lock bags in the refrigerator)
    3. Prepare Sweet and Unsweetened Tea and put in the Refrigerator.
    4. Prepare Candid Sweet Potatoes & put in Crock-pot to simmer overnight.
    5. Put 2 cans of cranberry sauce jell in refrigerator.
    6. Put pineapple on Ham, Slice, put in Microwavable covered dish and store in Refrigerator.
    7. If you are having a formal Dinner, set the table now with your best dishes, best glasses and best flatware.  If you are having an informal dinner, set the paper plates, paper cups, plastic flatware and a roll of paper towels at one end of the counter where the line will start for the buffet.  Put the paper cups next to the tea.

8.        Thursday

    1. Stuff the turkey and cook it. (should be in the oven about 3-5 hours before time to eat/according to the size of the bird/We have Thanksgiving Dinner about 6 PM because that gives family who are out of town time to get there and I don't have to rush/after all, it's not called Thanksgiving Lunch!)          
    2. Prepare your special Cranberry sauce or remove cranberry sauce jell put in shallow bowl & slice.
    3. Peal Russet Potatoes, cut up and put in pot to boil about 45 min. before Dinner. Make mashed potatoes about 15 minutes before Dinnertime.
    4. Bring water for corn to a boil. Put corn in to cook about 10 minutes before Dinner.
    5. Heat Ham in Microwave (retains more juices than if in oven).
    6. Put brown & serve rolls in the oven when you take the turkey out.
    7. Make Giblet gravy/use some of the turkey drippings in gravy.
    8. Heat Green Beans in Microwave.
    9. 10 minutes before Dinner drop 1 stick of real butter into Candid Sweet Potatoes in Crock-pot. 
    10. If you don't already have someone helping, you need them now because everything is getting done at the same time.  Informally set everything out on counter as a buffet (put ice in a bowl or ice bucket with thongs on top) or formally put everything in your best serving dishes with your best serving utensils, put ice & tea in the glasses, fill a nice picture with tea and put everything on the table.
    11. My silent prayer is: "Thank you Lord for food, friends and family, thank you that I lived through it, Please make everything taste great,  Bless the hands that helped me cook & Lord please move everyone to clean up their own mess and the kitchen after.  Amen  Whoever says the blessing usually blesses by hands.  I like that.
    12. Bon Appetite’.

Holidays made easy

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TasteBud's Delight

by Frances M. McCrory-Meservy