If you’re like us, you’re finding it difficult to accept that Thanksgiving is barely a week away. In fact, we can’t even believe we’re in November already! Season changes and holidays seem to be creeping up this year, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to ensure a stress free — or, at least stress less Thanksgiving. Keep these tips in mind for a simplified, more relaxing Turkey (or Tofurkey) day:
1. Eliminate and prioritize — Of course, planning is essential to any big production. Go ahead and make your To Do and To Cook lists, but then take some time to honestly review, eliminate and then prioritize your items. This is all about simplifying. Seriously consider what can be removed or shortened. Do you really need to sweep, wash and dust all your floors? What if you just did a quick sweep and spot cleaned with a damp rag? Do you really need to prepare six side dishes? What would happen if there were only four?
2. Accept help — When someone asks, “What can I bring?” or “How can I help?” take something from your list and delegate it. People who ask how they can pitch in really want to pitch in! Having friends bring dessert and drinks, asking your dad to come over early to help prepare, and letting your sister help clean up the next day are all easy, meaningful ways to get others involved.
3. Ask for help — No one offered? Then, ask. We know it’s hard to let go sometimes, but this is the perfect time to prove to your inner control freak and/or inner martyr that you really don’t have to do everything.
4. Prepare simple dishes — Has anyone ever been disappointed by a plate of simply prepared mashed potatoes, sautéed greens, cranberry sauce and Turkey?
5. Save the chores — Don’t do double duty; all the big cleaning jobs can be saved for after the celebration. Same goes for the “extra” cleaning, like sweeping the basement stairs or washing the curtains. Pay a little extra attention to the porch, entryway and bathroom, but otherwise, just clean up as you normally do. Candles and lighting go much further in setting the mood than does a spotless laundry room.
Keeping things simple allows us to focus on the truly important stuff this holiday. Simplifying slows us down a bit, lets us breathe a little deeper and truly savor the friends, family, healthy foods and nourishing traditions that are all around us. We wish you much joy and celebration this November!
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