Some years ago, when we bought our new home, I hosted Thanksgiving for my husband’s family. Cooking for 26 people did not intimidate me, however, I was a bit apprehensive. You may be thinking, ‘You’re a professional organizer. Why would this have caused you any apprehension?’ Well, it’s normal when you are doing something that you love to do, for people whom you love; even though it’s on a more grand scale Nevertheless, my nerves got the best of me right up to the moment when I made my ‘Thanksgiving Checklist.’
That’s right, I made a list of what I needed to do right up until I opened my front door & welcomed my guests. You name it, and it was on the list…cleaning the house, ironing the tablecloth, polishing the silver, running my stemware through the dishwasher, taking my grandmother’s china out, setting the table, planning the menu and shopping for it all. Then there’s delegating special recipes for certain family members. Let’s not forget setting the table, and choosing which serving platters to use for each entree. All this may sound overwhelming, but trust me, if you make a list, and then transfer each ‘to do item’ to your ‘to do calendar,’ you will not only get things done expeditiously, you’ll be relaxed in the process. Did you ‘catch on’ to when I mentioned delegating? Delegating is essential when taking on something as overwhelming as hosting a holiday dinner. I am a firm believer in delegating on a daily basis. One of my favorite quotes to my family is “I never said I was superwoman”. We all need help and should embrace it. With Thanksgiving right around the corner, why not get in the habit of delegating.
Back to my holiday undertaking, lucky for me, I had bought a cooking magazine that had many recipes that appealed to me. Each recipe gave a time line of what could be cooked beforehand. Some could be cooked days in advance and reheated Thanksgiving Day. Some had sauces that could be made in advance, frozen, then defrosted when needed. And, don’t stress about cooking the bird. Most magazines give cooking directions based on weight. So, each day until the holiday, I was able to check things off my list. Being organized not only helps alleviate stress, it allows you to enjoy yourself and your family on Thanksgiving. Also, keep in mind that a simple menu goes a long way, especially when this holiday is about bringing family together.
Now, can you see how you can look forward to and appreciate cooking and hosting for the upcoming holiday? Here’s your chance to shine as a hostess and showcase your cooking talents. C’mon, get organized, and enjoy Thanksgiving at your house.