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jjoiThanksgiving holiday is almost here and along with it comes all of the hosting, cooking, serving and entertaining.  There are several ways that we can make this Thanksgiving a simple yet memorable occasion.  Check out some of the ideas gathered to help with an easy transition from start to finish!


First off make a list of everything you need from the food to the decorations and anything in between.  A list can be a life saver and help to make things go a lot smoother.

Make sure all guest are clear on the time dinner will be served.

If you are the lucky one who will be hosting Thanksgiving this year plan ahead.  Decide the number of guest and rather or not you will be preparing all the food yourself or requesting covered sides to go with the main dish. Will the dinner be traditional or non-traditional?  How about decor?  Are you going for a formal or informal atmosphere? Take all that into account before you get started so that you will know what direction you’re going in and be ensured a wonderful stress-free holiday!

Be prepared with warm drinks such as after dinner teas, coffee or cocoa for those who want to relax a while after the big feast. Movies, games or even looking at old pictures  will be nice for good memories and entertainment. Have some warm throws on stand by as well as pillows for those who want to sit on the floor.


Compile a menu and a grocery list

Will you be cooking the food yourself or needing assistance?  If you will require assistance inform you kitchen partner of exactly what items you would like them to prepare and have all the ingredients laid out for easy access.

Most menu items can be prepared the night or even days before. Recently my wonderful neighbor offered to make dressing and pies for my family for the Thanksgiving holiday.  The great news is that she will make them in advance and I will place them in my freezer until the night before or the morning of Thanksgiving allowing the food to defrost. At last I will only have to reheat and present them as additions to  a scrumptious dinner to share on Thanksgiving day.

Gather all the serving pieces and make sure they are ready for the meal.  Theres nothing like wanting to dig into deliciousness and not have utensils needed on hand.


Flowers, candles or simply placing acorns or leaves from the yard in a glass container in the center of your table will make a simple yet beautiful center piece.

If you are going the traditional route and your table isn’t already set.  Why not set it now or at least check to see that you have everything you want for the look your going for.  That will be one less thing on your “Thanksgiving To Do List”;-)

Take a walk through the house to make sure all rooms you will be entertaining in are  set and ready.  It’s also a good idea that your powder rooms be well supplied with towels  and tissues.


It’s always good to clean as you go. Nevertheless be sure to double-check that the kitchen is tidy for guest just before they arrive.


In case you happen to be the guest I suggest simply be on time .  If you will be bringing a covered dish make sure it won’t add extra work for the host.  Use a serving dish that can go straight from the oven or refrigerator to the table.

If you decide you want to bring a gift for the host. Try and keep it simple with items like flowers or a bottle of sparkling cider that can be left for the host to enjoy later.



Being that not everyone has a home family and friends to gather around.  Don’t forget to give even of yourself to another.  Try volunteering at the food pantry or serving at your local homeless shelter. It wouldn’t hurt to invite a widowed neighbor over to join your family for dinner or take a plate of food to a homeless person on the street.   After all this holiday is about being grateful and giving thanks. Let’s make sure we give of our selves and give thanks for being a blessing to another. Enjoy!