Thanksgiving is the time to count your blessings, delight in pumpkin pie and roasted turkey, and catch up with distant relatives and friends. But hosting Thanksgiving at your own home can be nerve-racking. Hosting the celebration can be incredibly overwhelming for first-timers. You have to deal with sending out invitations, cooking the dishes and decorating the table, and more. But the Thanksgiving checklist will take some of the pressure off. These guidelines and techniques will help make the process manageable, structured, and fun!
Make your Austin Thanksgiving easy and stress-free with this Thanksgiving planning checklist!
4 Weeks Before Thanksgiving
- Determine what type of Thanksgiving gathering you want to sponsor – big, casual, or kid-friendly. This will help you determine how many people to invite.
- Make your guest list.
- Send out invitations if needed. Either through post or digitally.
- Begin planning your menu and make a comprehensive shopping checklist.
- Order your turkey early, especially if you’re getting a particular type, such farmer’s market bird, which may sell out in early November.
- Order a centerpiece that goes with the mood of your occasion, or buy items to make one.
3 Weeks Before Thanksgiving
- Make sure you’ve got adequate tables and seats for all your guests.
- Figure out what linens and dishware you plan to use.
- Purchase any kitchen items and cooking essentials you need for Thanksgiving.
2 Weeks Before Thanksgiving
- Clean the refrigerator and freezer to make room for the products you’ll be freezing.
- Purchase nonperishable items and decors to beat the rush, such as wines, paper products, candles, wreaths, or other items.
- Cook the food items that will freeze well, such as soups, pie crusts, stock, and many others.
- Make place cards and table decors.
1 Week Before Thanksgiving
- Evaluate your recipes and make a cooking schedule. This is a crucial step to guarantee good results.
- If you choose a frozen turkey, now is the time to purchase it. Be sure to check your local market advertisements to get the best deal.
- Prepare stuff to keep the children busy – crafts, games, puzzles, and many others.
4 Days Before Thanksgiving
- Prep and clean the house, press table linens, and polish silver.
- Start defrosting your frozen turkey if that’s what you bought. Frozen turkeys can take much longer than you think to unfreeze.
- Start decorating your home, especially the nonperishable home decor like candles, pinecones, or even wreaths.
2 Days Before Thanksgiving
- Purchase your perishable items, and don’t forget to get ice!
- Clean the fruits and veggies and put them in the fridge.
- Chill your drinks.
- Take anything out of the freezer you made in advance to defrost.
The Day Before Thanksgiving
- Prep food that can be made ahead of time, like cranberry sauce. Your cranberry sauce will taste much better if you make it in advance and let it sit in your chiller for a couple of days.
- Peel off and chop all your vegetables.
- Brine your turkey if you hate a dry bird.
- Set the table, have fun, and be creative. Your table will attract your guests and enhance the look of any holiday pictures.
- Spot-clean all the rooms before the special day. Ensure the guest bathroom is fully stocked with fresh towels, soap, toilet paper, hand sanitizer, and candles; of course, the trash is empty.
What to Prepare on Thanksgiving Day
- Put the turkey in the oven, depending on the cooking time.
- Finish preparing the veggie dishes, and heat the sides and appetizers.
- Designate family members simple tasks like watching the children or filling beverages for visitors.