Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving: Less Stress, More Joy

This year for Thanksgiving, we are going out to eat.  I am looking forward to it so much!   I don't think the rest of the family is as excited as I am, but we have done Thanksgiving the way they want it for almost every year.  In the past, I have overdone things.  I prepare too many dishes, had to have my homemade rolls hot out of the oven and onto the table, made several different kinds of pies, etc.  We will probably make a pie or two this Thanksgiving and make a nice breakfast, but that is it.  Just think of the hours I have saved from being in the kitchen cooking and cleaning!  What I really want is to sit down and enjoy a meal with my family and not be concerned about shopping, cooking and cleaning up.  It will be a relaxing, enjoyable day for me.  I read some comments on another blog, Minimalist Mom, about other people's experiences with the holidays.  Several commented how they have Chinese take out instead of preparing a meal.  When I was in Hong Kong, they didn't celebrate Christmas, but celebrated Chinese New Year.  This makes it a win-win situation for Christmas.  They don't celebrate it and can make a lot of money on Christmas and we can have a more relaxed holiday and won't have to cook. 


To save money as well as reduce clutter, use what you have and/or get branches outside and put together a nice Thanksgiving table decoration.  If you have orange candles from Halloween, they would work well.  If you have red candles, etc. for Christmas, you can pull them out and use them now.  Red and Orange would look beautiful when putting together a nice Fall centerpiece for Thanksgiving.  You could even pull out some fruits and veggies to use if you are creative.


If you don't feel like cooking a turkey, try cooking a turkey breast.

Find out what dishes are the favorite ones and just make a couple.

But a pie instead of making one.

Order a Thanksgiving meal  from your favorite grocery store.  It may not taste as good as homemade, but it is a LOT LESS WORK!

Skip cooking all together and order take out or go out to eat.

Have friends over and split up the meal.  Less work and more fun.

Use nice paper plates instead of nice china.

Make your turkey meal in the crock pot.   You can put in onions, potatoes and carrots with the meat and let it cook.  Only one dish to clean for all that! 

Celebrate the holiday a different way by going on a short trip instead of spending your time in the kitchen.

Buy turkey lunch meat and have turkey sandwiches instead.  Or, get turkey burger and make barbequed turkey burgers.  Or, get a turkey tenderloin and cook up a smaller portion of turkey.  This will save time and money. 

However you choose to celebrate, we hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.  May you reflect on the many blessings you have, even in hard times, and how fortunate we are to live in a free country.  We have so many opportunities to learn and succeed.  There is always something we can be grateful for.