One of the best ways to make Thanksgiving a lot less stressful, is to take care of some tasks in advance. The more you can do before the day, the more time you’ll have to relax and simply enjoy it.
There are lots of things you can do ahead of time. Below, we’ll look at just five things that can be done without pressure ahead of the day.
- Create Your Menus and Place Cards
One of the more fun tasks you can do ahead of time is create your menus and place cards. Giving guests a menu and their own place card really adds a more personal touch.
You can create both the menus and place cards on your computer. You’ll find lots of pre-made templates you can follow. Or, if you are creative you could create your own designs. You can make these as early as you like and store them to be used on the day.
- Shopping for the Things You Need
Ensuring you have everything in that you need is going to save you a lot of stress. If you start the shopping early, you can also do it in stages, rather than having to make one lengthy dash to the store.
Make sure you have a list you can follow so you don’t forget anything. Obviously, anything fresh will have to be left until the week of Thanksgiving. However, there are still plenty of things you can buy in ahead of time.
- Prep Your Turkey
Before you cook the turkey, there are a few tasks you can do ahead of time. For example, if you’re planning on dry brining or brining the turkey, you can do this 1-3 days before cooking. If you plan on just rubbing the turkey with flavoring, you can make the butter basting around a week in advance, storing it in the refrigerator.
- Make Some Dishes ahead of Time
As Thanksgiving approaches, it’s a great idea to start creating some dishes ahead of time. If you’ll be including mashed potatoes for example, you could make them and freeze them. If you do plan on doing this, you’ll want to make sure you are using full-fat dairy as this protects the potatoes while they are frozen.
You can also create cranberry sauce well ahead of time. The sugar content helps to preserve the sauce, enabling it to be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.
- Travel Plans
If you will be travelling for Thanksgiving, now is the time to start planning your route. You’ll want to have back-up route options in case you need them on the day. If you have friends and family coming to you, why not help them by providing travel itineraries?
These are some of the main tasks you can plan ahead of time for Thanksgiving. Remember, the more you can plan and make ahead, the easier you’re going to find the day itself.