You have invited the guests, bought most of what you'll need for the big day and have narrowed down your menu... now what?

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  • Your turkey should be in the fridge defrosting by now
  • Short on ice, here's a cool get a head tip, start putting your ice into freezer bags, as the machine makes more, bag it and repeat. If you don't have an ice maker, start making ice in trays.
  • If you plan on sending leftovers home with your guests, make sure that you have enough containers on hand to do so.
  • Double check your pantry and fridge, compare it with your menu and make last trip to grocery store
  • If you have guests bringing side dishes and desserts, make sure to shoot them an email or call them to remind them. (never hurts to remind them, better that than not have what they are suppose to bring, especially if its a 'big ticket' item, like cranberries or dressing)
  • Make ahead anything that will reheat well or last in the fridge such as; pies, cranberry relish, casseroles, sweet potatoes etc...
  • Make a quick sweep of the fridge and toss anything that doesn't belong there, like last months meatloaf to assure there is plenty of fridge space.
  • Clean main floor bathroom and be sure there is a place that will designated for guests coats and belonging's.
  • Chopping veggies for your dishes can slow you down on the big day, a little prep work will save the day. Chop your onions, celery, carrots and what have you's so that this task is out of the way. Store your prep items in resealable baggies in the fridge.
  • If you plan on setting up any games on the tv, check your local listings so that you know when they are playing and on what channel. You can have this on in the background while you are doing last minute prep and cooking.
  • Don't forget appetizers, small appetizers are best, but appetizers nonetheless. This will help keep people out of the kitchen and out of your way, plus it will temper any hungry guests that may be prone to being crabby. :)
  • One thing that I have been known to overlook is my spices. Just because they were all there last time I looked, doesn't mean they are still there. Nothing worse than reaching for a prime ingredient like poultry seasoning only to find that you don't have any.

One of the most important tips that I can pass on is to relax. Enjoy yourself and don't get stressed if the meal is running late, remember, you have appetizers and football... they'll be patient enough and you will have a great holiday.