Tips To Prepare For Thanksgiving

November 12, 2012 by  

Thanksgiving Will Run Smooth If Your Prepared

The last thing we want to be doing on Thanksgiving day is running around trying to figure out how to accomplish things, because we didn’t plan ahead.

Planning ahead of time makes it possible to borrow or buy the things you need.  Need more chairs or card tables to set things up? This is a good time to ask family  or neighbors if they have what you need.  You might find you need baking dishes, freezer space, extra dishes, oven space – you want to plan this all out ahead of time.

Using labels can help you in your pre-Thanksgiving Day preparations.  To have your Thanksgiving day move smoothly, planning needs to be done ahead of time.

One way to make things move smoothly is to use this idea from Good Housekeeping.  When you set your table, or get out your serving dishes – label them. Use a non-sticky note card and label what is going to go in the dish and make sure you have a serving utensil to go with it.

It makes it very easy for anyone to help you when it comes time to fill the dishes.

thanksgiving organizing

Good Housekeeping

Thanksgiving Day Tips for Planning Ahead

  • Make sure you have enough seating for all your guests
  • Make sure you have all the place settings you need, plates, silverware, glassware.
  • Make sure you have the necessary serving dishes and utensils.
  • Have all your recipes gathered together
  • Make sure you have all the necessary ingredients for your recipes
  • See if there are any recipes that can be made ahead of time.
  • Be sure you have enough refrigerator space (you may need to ask a neighbor for extra space)
  • Write out a schedule of times as to when you need to put each item into cook/bake so that all your food is finished and warm for the meal.
  • Write out place cards ahead of time and have your tables set up and ready to go.
  • Plan any Thanksgiving day activities, so your guests aren’t bored while you are in the kitchen

I also love this idea of making notecards noting what each item is. We can’t always assume your guests will know what your dishes are. They might be something that is very familiar to us, but something completely new to a guest. They might wonder, but wouldn’t want seem rude to ask. This is especially important if you have any guest that might have some kind of food allergy. In that case, find out what that allergy is, and make a note if it is allergy free for that guest.


Good Housekeeping

Simple steps like this can help your Thanksgiving day meal go smoother.  Being prepared and thinking through things ahead of time will make your day much easier.  It also makes it possible for more people to be able to assist you in the kitchen to prepare the meal.

Here are a couple more of my posts from Thanksgivings past.

Organizing for Thanksgiving 2010

Thanksgiving Is About Being Thankful – 2010

Organizing for Thanksgiving Dinner – 2009

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10 Responses to “Tips To Prepare For Thanksgiving”
  1. What a great and SIMPLE way to make sure that you don’t forget anything (as I typically do each year when I find the cranberry sauce tucked into the back of the fridge the next day).

  2. Damian says:

    That is a useful idea. I can’t tell you how many times I had to ask somebody what something was in a dish!

  3. Oooh, i really like the idea of labeling your serving dishes! I just stole it. :D

    Thanks for the great post. Thanksgiving is definitely my favorite holiday and it really helps to be organized- especially when you’re hosting!

  4. Sandy says:

    So true.. right Zippy?

  5. Sandy says:

    Yes.. I thought it was too!

  6. Sandy says:

    That’s the idea! It wasn’t my idea to begin with.. wish I could take credit, but that Good Housekeeping…. their on top of it! lol

  7. Labeling your serving dishes…brilliant! Now I will know for certain if I have the right size dish ahead of time, instead of digging for a bowl at the last minute. Thanks Sandy!

  8. Sandy says:

    Thanks Jules. I thought it was a great idea also. Glad it will help.

  9. says:

    Great tips. I always do as much as I can ahead of time. Last year I labeled the dishes with the contents & it made it so much easier for people to help me. I also had a detailed checklist on the refrigerator.

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