We're doing Thanksgiving at our house this year.
At breakfast, Debbie talked about 'the plan'. "Okay, Joel, I need your help today. I am setting up the table, so you need to get the leaves locked in for me."
"We are setting up the table today? Thanksgiving is 5 days away."
"Yes ... I know ... and we are already a week too late."
"A week too late? If I were doing it, we'd set up the table the day before and put the turkey in the oven and bingo ..."
"Yeah. bingo, we'd wind up at Shoney's eating turkey sandwiches."
"C'mon. I bet the average set up time that families take for Thanksgiving is about three days ... tops."
"Oh yeah? Well let's just look it up."
"Okay." Google brought up tons of Thanksgiving sites and of course ... I was wrong. One site suggested three weeks. I am not making this up ...
Three weeks out:
- Invite your guests
Oh yeah ... our family doesn't need an invitation. Put out free food and booze and they're there three hours early and leave the next day when the wine runs out.
- Order your organic turkey
What? What the hell is an organic turkey? One that's really healthy before it's slaughtered? I could care less what the turkey eats and how healthy it is before it's plucked and slaughtered as long as it's delicious.
- Set Your Budget
I guess this should have come up before the organic turkey appeared. Those suckers cost as much as the whole dinner.
- Start checking your grocery store ads and pull out your old decorations
Look for deals like (this was in the list) old Halloween decorations that could be used for Thanksgiving. Personally, I'd like a few Zombies at the table.
Two weeks out:
- Check your linens
In case you spilled crap all over them last year and then just folded them up and put them away? Even I wouldn't do that. Well ... maybe I would have.
- Plan Your Centerpiece and Table Decor
The Zombies are looking better and better.
- Buy a Frozen Turkey
I'm not sure what happened to the organic turkey from the week before. I guess you want to give your guests a choice. "Would you like a healthy turkey ... or would you prefer this frozen, unhealthy, uncooked thing?"
- Check your kitchen supplies and tools
For our family, that means have an adequate supply of plastic forks and paper plates. I won't mention anyone by name ... there is no need to embarrass Dennie with the paper plate stories.
- Finalize what dishes your guests will bring
We don't need this step. Our family brings the same stuff every year. The sisters bring about 23 different desserts and Debbie's dad brings a pile of pickled eggs and sloppy joes. Nobody eats the eggs except for Larry which is just fine with him.
By one week out
- Order flowers
In case anyone actually eats Larry's pickled eggs.
- Polish silver
Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha !!!! Oh wait is that POLISH silverware? Like what is Polish silverware? Plastic forks and knives.
For our group, you don't want to buy it too early. We always check the expiration date on the container.
-Plan activities for the children
All the kids have their own plans this year (smart group). When they do come the plan is: Run through the house for an hour when you arrive, bang on the piano keys until a few of the hammers fall off, whine about having nothing there that they like and fall asleep in the turkey (ooops ... sorry ... that's me).
OKAY full disclosure: Debbie does not use anything that is paper or plastic. The table is decorated beautifully with crystal and china and the house is immaculate. (as if you didn't know)
Whew ... Debbie's right. I haven't even gotten to shopping, cooking, making lists (Debbie's part time job), and cleaning the house. This preparation stuff wears me out.
I gotta lay down.