Getting Ready for Thanksgiving

Ok everyone, we have less than a week until Thanksgiving and the official start of the holiday season. Are you ready?? May and June thought it was a perfect day to share how they get organized and prepared for Thanksgiving. Whether you’re hosting the holiday, or traveling to someone’s home, there are ways to make this bountiful day a little less stressful.

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For May, it’s all in the prepping. She has hosted Thanksgiving for family and friends for over twenty years, and has had a lot of experience on how to prepare a Thanksgiving meal. (Admittedly, some years better than others, but practice makes perfect.) She begins her work the week before the holiday. The sausage for the stuffing is browned, and the onions, carrots, celery, and cranberries are chopped and bagged, then everything goes into the freezer until the stuffing is assembled, the day before the feast.IMG_3176

A few years ago, May’s mom gave her a cookbook by Ina Garten ( aka The Barefoot Contessa), called Make it Ahead, which has become her favorite book for entertaining.

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Last year, she roasted the turkey ahead of time (Ina’s recipe), and had it all sliced and prepared the day before Thanksgiving. All that was required was heating before serving. It was delicious!! Guests always bring a dish to share which takes a lot of pressure off the host, plus it allows everyone to be involved in creating the meal, which makes it more special. Another great time saver is getting the dining room table set a few days ahead of time. May also uses the kitchen table for dining, which is set Thanksgiving morning.

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Remember, part of the fun of entertaining is enjoying the company of your family and friends, which is hard to do when you’re stuck in the kitchen.

June’s Thanksgiving is usually away from home.  June always traveled to her grandparents in Southern Missouri for Thanksgiving growing up, so long road trips are typical.  Many years, June traveled to her husband’s family in Buffalo, New York but this year she has it easy because dinner is at her aunt’s house only an hour away.  June’s family, like May’s, has everyone bring a contribution to dinner.  This year June is in charge of the vegetables and is going to bring roasted root vegetables.  Because there is so little prep involved she will chop the vegetables Thursday morning and put them in ziploc bags along with the olive oil and seasonings.  She will just transport them to her aunt’s home and roast them there.

It is nice when Thanksgiving is close to local because it gives some quiet peacefulness to the start of  the holiday season.  June plans to take a nice quiet walk on Thanksgiving and think about her blessings.  And she plans to slowly sip her wine, appreciate the work that went into all of the preparation of the meal and enjoy the company of her family.

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We wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving!  May you all enjoy the gratitude and beauty of the season. –May and June

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