10 Tips for Tackling The Turkey Day “To Do” List!


Don’t let Tom get the best of you! Here are some tips for getting it under control. Start now and avoid the stress of last minute holiday preparations!

10 Tips For Tackling Turkey Day

1. Confirm number of guests.

2. Decide on sit down or buffet or combo ( we always have 20+ guests, but love to have everyone gathered at one table. So we serve food buffet style and have everyone sit at a long Thanksgiving Table we create from lining up smaller tables – it runs from the Dining Room to the Living Room!)

3. Regardless of how you plan to serve your Thanksgiving feast, you are going to need to seat all your guests somewhere, so make sure you have enough seats and space.

4. Launder and press tablecloths and napkins.

5. Decide on your signature cocktail. This is great for welcoming guests from a road trip, a glass of prosecco is one of our favorites. Select the wine (4 – 5 glasses per bottle) and beer, and make sure you have enough glasses. Stock your pantry with a case of sparkling water – whatever you don’t use will come in handy the rest of the Holiday Season.

6. Purchase your beverages ahead of time – this is some heavy lifting you can get out of the way in advance of Thanksgiving.

7. Finalize your menu (see tip 10 too). You know Turkey will be on it, so make some decisions:  Fresh or frozen? ( if you want fresh make sure to order it).

What size Turkey? Decide based on number of guests. If you will want to have enough for each person to have at least two servings and enough for turkey leftovers allow 1lb. per person. However, general guidelines are: Bone in breast = 1/2 lb. per person Boneless breast or role = 1/3 lb. per person

How long to thaw? It is best to thaw a turkey in the refrigerator

6 to 8lbs. = 1 to 1 ¾ days
8 to 12lbs. = 1 to 2 days
12 to 16lbs. = 2 to 3 days
16 to 20lbs. = 3 to 4 days

8. Make three shopping lists:

  • Buy Now: All your non-perishables: beverages, paper items, canned goods, candles, etc..
  • Buy Monday before Thanksgiving: fruit, veggies, etc…
  • Buy Wednesday before Thanksgiving: fresh bread, flowers, etc… and you can pick up anything you forgot.

9. Make what you can ahead of time. Here are some great recipes from Good Housekeeping for “make the ahead dishes” view> GO.

10. Invite guests to bring their family’s favorite side dishes. It’s nice to have guests share and enjoy their traditional dish at your table – just like the Pilgrims! Plus, it cuts down on your shopping, cooking and mess! Decide what everyone is bringing and cross off some items on your list.

 and PLEASE “Remember to be safe when cooking your Thanksgiving dinner! Check out Foodsafety.gov for tips!”  or “Keep your guests safe when entertaining – check out Foodsafety.gov for tips!”



original post 11/10


13 Responses to 10 Tips for Tackling The Turkey Day “To Do” List!

  1. It was great meeting you too Molly. Thanks for your help. FHCD is a wonderful school full of love, great energy, and people. We were so please to be a small part of your event.

  2. Dawn and Elizabeth-I so enjoyed meeting you both at the Far Hills boutique. You two are so creative and realistic too! Thanks to you, I have already started my Thanksgiving kids table prep! They will love it! -Molly

  3. […] Be prepared – Plan ahead and manage your tasks so you are feeling grateful when your guests arrive. […]

  4. Great Article! Large holidays meals can be stressful, especially when you’re the host. Making a list always helps me organize the chaos, and planning in advance eases the anxiety. Thank you for the tips!

  5. I make a few things ahead of time. Cornbread and biscuits for the dressing, sweet potatoe casserole (add the marshmellows later) and the green beans all are made on Wednesday. I pull them out of the frig a couple of hours before dinner and put the beans on the stove and the casserole in the oven 30 minutes before dinner. I cook the pies Thursday morning and assemble the dressing while they are in the oven.

    I have the kids help me set the table Wednesday night and they make the placecards for everyone. I take out all of my serving dishes the night before too and wipe them down and put sticky notes for what food goes where. That makes it easy for guests to help when it is time to serve. I also make sure I have serving utensils with each dish so I don’t have to rush around the kitchen in a panic looking for a slotted spoon for the green beans! But the most important thing I do is take time to enjoy the day with my family.

  6. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by DawnSandomeno: 10 Tips for Tackling the Turkey Day “To Do” List @ The Partybluprints Blog http://bit.ly/4o7g1E Start Now – Stress Less Later!…

  7. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Dawn Sandomeno, Dawn Sandomeno and Kristie Patel, Rachel de Carlos. Rachel de Carlos said: RT @puddlescollect: RT @DawnSandomeno: 10 Tips for Tackling the Turkey Day "To Do" List @ The Partybluprints Blog http://bit.ly/4o7g1E […]

  8. You remind me how early I need to start preparing! We usually have about 20-24 people over and it is a big undertaking. Thankfully in our family it is customary to bring a dish so that helps a lot. But I do plan to stock up on the Presecco.

  9. what a great list of things to get done. I always have a hard time deciding what to take my host but sending flowers ahead of time makes perfect sinse. Thanks

  10. Go for the Butterball stuffed turkey. (cook from frozen)
    Super easy – and since it is pre-stuffed, that is one less thing to make.

    Try to eliminate a few options and stick with basics . If no one likes broccoli – why fight it – stick with the carrots and mashed potatoes.

    Happy Holidays everyone !

  11. I have but two things on my “to do” list for Thanksgiving:

    1. Drive five hours to mother-in-law’s house.
    2. Eat.

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