7 Tips for a Stress-Free Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving is one of the most stressful times of the year, but it really doesn’t have to be like that. If you just want a day with the family, watching the football, and chatting about all the things you’re thankful for, you can have that. These 7 tips will help you create that fun and stress-free thanksgiving without all the stress and worry. The best thing is these tips will work for small and large gatherings.
#1. Give Everyone a Job for the Day
Too many of us try to manage the whole day ourselves. There’s this feeling like as a host we should be the one to tackle all the tasks and jobs for the day. This is where the stress comes from!
You don’t have to be a one-person show. Give everyone in the house a task or job for the day. Make the tasks age-appropriate. Younger children can write out thank you cards, make some of the table decorations, and set the table. Older children can help with preparing the food or washing the dishes. Adults can all chip in with a dish to cook or a part of the day to organize or be in charge of snacks and drink top-ups for the day.
Llama Llama Gives Thanks
#2. Do as Much as Possible the Day Before
Just because Thanksgiving is one day doesn’t mean everything has to be done on this one day. You can do things the night before. In fact, it’s beneficial if you do things the day before.
Why not prep the turkey ready to go in the oven the next morning? Consider preparing the vegetables and potatoes. Get things ready to cook before you go to bed. You can even cook some of the dishes, so you just have to reheat them on the day.
More preparation the night before means more time to spend with your family on Thanksgiving.
#3. Opt for a Low-Key Thanksgiving
Do you do the turkey and all the trimmings? Why not consider doing something a little different this year? Make your Thanksgiving low-key and untraditional. Opt for a meal that the whole family loves for this one day of the year, such as your homemade lasagna or a stew you can make in the slow cooker.
Low-key means you have more time to relax with the family. You can spend more time watching the football and sharing everything you’re thankful for rather than stressing about whether the turkey will taste good.
#4. Encourage the Kids to Play Together
The children will want to know when dinner is ready. This is a meal they’ve looked forward to all day and many tend to starve themselves to make sure there’s room. They also want to help or want to play with you, meaning they get under your feet and cause more stress.
Encourage the kids to play a board game or find indoor activities to do instead. Ask older children to find an activity for all to do. You can even give this job to an adult or two, keeping the ones that are useful in the kitchen out of the way!
#5. Get Children to Create a Play
When the kids get bored of the games, give them something creative to do. Get your kids to create a skit of the first Thanksgiving or ask them to tell a story of the things they’re most thankful to. Not only does this give them something to do, but you encourage learning and innovation.
Make sure someone has a camera ready to record it all. This is a great way to look back over the day and remember all the good things that happened.
A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
#6. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
Quite honestly, let the small things pass you buy. Burnt potatoes are nothing in the grand scheme of things. A dry turkey is going to be a little harder to eat but it’s not the end of the world. You’ve got your family all in one place and the chance to value quality time together. Focus on the bigger benefits of the day.
By not sweating the small stuff, you’ll find most of the stresses of the day disappear. You will enjoy and do more with the people you care about.
#7. Organize a Pot Luck Supper
If you’re hosting Thanksgiving for friends or larger groups of family members, opt for a pot luck supper instead. Everyone can bring a dish and you share everything together. A turkey dinner isn’t necessary. It’s all about sharing food and being grateful for the company.
Really want a turkey dinner? Well, ask everyone to bring a specific dish. Give them advance notice so they know which dish they’re to bring along with them. Don’t forget desserts, snacks, and drinks!
Are you ready to have an enjoyable Thanksgiving? This is your chance to connect with family and relax before the Black Friday sales begin. Follow the tips above to keep the Thanksgiving stress to a minimum.
What are your plans for Thanksgiving? What will you do to minimize the stress? Share in the comments below.