Thursday, November 24, 2011
Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you are having a lovely time with your family and enjoying the day. If you are stressed and feel like you are spending too much time in the kitchen and not enough with your family here are a couple of quick tips to try out the next holiday (Christmas?).
1. Do your shopping early. Most of the things you will need can be purchased at least a week in advance. This way you can avoid the crowds and be rested for the cooking you are going to be doing.
2. Make everything you can ahead of time. Last week I made up and froze our yams/sweet potatoes. I'll make my pies up a day or two in advance also. Some prep work can be done early too (like chopping vegetables). Look at your recipes and see how you can split these things up.
3. Use a turkey roaster for your turkey. This frees up the oven for the rest of the foods you need to cook. This keeps you from needing to do a last minute scramble to get everything in right after the turkey comes out. Since the roaster can be used as a crock pot too it comes in handy all year long for a large family (or just making large batches to freeze/share)!
4. List out the foods you are making in the order they need to be prepared. My list will look something like this.
-Put the turkey in the roaster in the morning.
-wash, peel and boil potatoes
-prep sausage stuffing
-cook yams and stuffing
-mash the potatoes
As each thing is done I'll cross it off of my list. When I figure out what time we plan to eat I'll put times next to each thing on my list so I know when I should be starting each one. This will allow me to enjoy my time with my family between tasks and not be worried about what I'm missing.
5. Let them help! If you have a large family or just a couple of little ones then chances are you have some helpers too! Let them help you. Accepting their help does two things for you, it lightens your load AND (more importantly) it allows for some quality time together!
6. Plan some simple activities, games or crafts to be done during the day so that the family does not just end up sitting around doing nothing. Our kids have been preparing speeches (from Thanksgiving books or verses from the Bible) to give.
Relax and enjoy your day. Remember it is not having a perfectly cooked gourmet meal that matters, it is the fellowship that matters. A simple meal made with love is going to be so much more special than a fancy meal made with strife.
I'm linking to Organizing junkie today.