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Thanksgiving Planning 2010

thanksgiving menuMy favorite holiday of all time is right around the corner.  I love Thanksgiving.  I love everything about it.  I love that it is about being thankful for what you have.  I love that it is about a wonderful meal and sharing it with the people that you care about.  I love that there is no present buying or hustle and bustle.  It is simple and I look forward to it every year.

I am a traditionalist when it comes to my Thanksgiving meal.  I make the same thing year after year.  I make what my mother made for Thanksgiving dinner.  And what my grandmother made for Thanksgiving dinner.  You are not going to find food trends on my menu or anything really gourmet.  You will find delicious side dishes and things that you can make ahead of time so that you can actually enjoy Thanksgiving Day with your friends and family.

thanksgiving menu planning

I really try to do as much as humanly possible before the holiday.  I plan my menu, shop, set the table, polish silver, whatever little things that I can do, I do.  I have this folder that I use every year for Thanksgiving.  I made it years ago when I cooked my first Thanksgiving meal.  I got made fun of for this folder, but honestly, it comes in really handy year after year.  I have all of my family recipes in it and the shopping list that I need for each dish.  You really might consider making one for yourself.

thanksgiving menu planningI realize that I can be a little Type A, but I really believe that if I go to the effort to make this huge meal, then I deserve to enjoy it as well.  By taking the time before hand to organize and get ready, I can enjoy a glass of wine and actually sit down and chew my food.  I have learned a few things through the years.  The first being, to make sure that you have enough serving dishes.  It really stinks to try to serve a turkey and realize that you have nothing to serve it on.  When your guests are seated at the table waiting to eat it.  Oh yeah, not my best Thanksgiving.  I have traded all of my random serving dishes for all white pieces.  I love the way food stands out on white and white matches everything.  I write down each dish that I am making on a Post-It note and put it in the serving dish.  That way I will not run out of dishes.  Second, make a game plan.  I write out all of the tasks out and divide them into days.  Usually, my Thanksgiving prep starts a week before.  Mine looks something like this:

thanksgiving menu planningI am going to share with you some of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes all this week.  So stay tuned.  If you have any questions about cooking or baking for Thanksgiving or traditions that you have, please leave me a note in the comments section.  I would love to hear them or answer them if I can.

**the adorable graphics came from pugly pixel**

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  1. Natalie

    November 7th, 2010 at 7:30 am

    I love the graphics. And most of all I love the traditional Thanksgiving your family is going to have! I admire your organization and planning skills. Our extended family of 19 still relies on Granny to do most of the cooking!

  2. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:10 am

    Thank you Natalie!!

  3. Sara

    November 7th, 2010 at 8:39 am

    Thank you for this post, I really need to learn how to plan ahead for the big Thanksgiving Meal! 🙂 I usually panic last minute and not enjoy the Holiday myself.

  4. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:09 am

    Please, do not panic! Follow my instructions and you will actually be able to chew your food!

  5. thecoffeesnob

    November 7th, 2010 at 8:52 am

    This is such a great way to organize what could otherwise be a really stressful dinner- thanks for sharing it! 🙂

  6. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:09 am

    my pleasure! I hope that you find it useful.

  7. Tracy

    November 7th, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    Thank you for sharing this! I am trying to decide on when to make everything and how to have it come together at the same time.

  8. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:08 am

    I make everything except for the turkey ahead of time. I set out the casseroles a few hours before I need to reheat them so that it does not take so long in the oven.

  9. Darcie

    November 7th, 2010 at 2:18 pm

    Can’t wait to check out the recipes!

  10. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:07 am

    thanks Darcie!

  11. Lisa

    November 7th, 2010 at 2:42 pm

    I’m definitely a traditionalist too. We always make the same things every year. The only thing we’ve changed is in moving from canned/boxed/processed to homemade and we’ll never go back. Looks like you have a delicious Thanksgiving meal in the works.

  12. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:07 am

    Even before I went no processed food, I always made Thanksgiving from scratch. It makes a difference.

  13. Kimba's Kitchen

    November 7th, 2010 at 7:40 pm

    Ohh you’re so organised and your Thanksgiving menu sounds incredible!! I look forward to those recipes – we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia but I sure wish we did! In fact, if I actually do get around to inviting ppl over for a Thanksgiving dinner anyway – I will be sure to look up your recipes!! Love your blog 🙂

  14. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:05 am

    Thank you Kimba!

  15. The Prairie Hen

    November 7th, 2010 at 8:06 pm

    Dear Same ol’-Same ol’,
    We must have gone to different schools together! Thanksgiving is my fave too (nothing to do w/ the fact that I was born Nov. 26th or anything), there are certain things I MUST have for Thanksgiving (mostly things my mom always made), and I totally have folders, menus and sticky notes for dishes!

    I hope you will contiue to share some tips on how to actually enjoy hosting the feast though… I seem to always work so hard putting it all together and pulling it off that I’m too tired to really enjoy the event itself… major drawback of perfectionism at it’s worst… can’t wait to see your recipes!

    Love,
    Type A, B, C and D in NE

  16. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:05 am

    I really do sit down and enjoy it. I make everything ahead of time and have the table set, etc, the night before. I am also not a perfectionist at all!

  17. Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday

    November 8th, 2010 at 9:49 am

    Mmmm sounds like a great menu!

  18. bakedbree

    November 11th, 2010 at 12:01 am

    thank you Samantha!

  19. Jess

    November 8th, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    I just ran across your blog searching for a home-made carmel sauce. I am 26 weeks prego and really itching for a good carmel sauce to dip my apples in 🙂 I can’t wait to try it tonight! I am really really hoping one of the recipes you will share is your Grand Marnier Pecan Pie. My husband is a pecan pie fanatic. I made one last year with rum and he went bananas over it. Looking forward to following this blog 🙂 Thanks for all the great tips.

  20. bakedbree

    November 10th, 2010 at 11:59 pm

    My pecan pie recipe will be posted in the morning. Thanks for reading Jess!

  21. Lisa

    November 14th, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    I dont even know how I stumbled into your blog… but I love it!
    I’ve been surfing your recipes for quite a while. All of your pics are beautiful and your directions are so easy to follow! And I love your honest commentary!

    Thanks! I’m excited to try some of these – I’ll be making the Pumpkin Pielets tonight! 🙂

  22. bakedbree

    November 15th, 2010 at 10:31 pm

    Thank you Lisa!

  23. Corey

    November 7th, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    This was a fantastic Thanksgiving meal! It’s only Nov 7th and I’m already planning on adding those beans to my menu this year. Of course, i will have bobbie’s berries on my table. Those are devine!! Enjoy your Thanksgiving preps. I’m sure you are getting excited for the big day!

  24. bakedbree

    November 7th, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    I forgot all about those beans until I was putting my newsletter together. How could I forget those? Are you cooking this year?

  25. Sarah

    November 16th, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    Any special instructions for making the stuffing before? Do you bake it the night before and reheat?

  26. bakedbree

    November 17th, 2014 at 11:22 pm

    I bake it the day of to heat it through and crisp the top.

  27. Gigi

    November 15th, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    Yay, so happy to find this post still on your site!

  28. bakedbree

    November 19th, 2017 at 10:44 pm

    I am too, good luck!

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