Thanksgiving looms on the horizon, and I’ve given it barely a thought. My husband keeps nudging me to plan the menu, but it’s been hectic and we’re both just in survival mode so it hasn’t been a huge priority. Besides, we pretty much have the same menu every year, so it’s not like we’re reinventing the wheel here. I just need to throw those staple ingredients down on my grocery list, and it will pretty much fall into place.
I’ll admit, I’m kind of a lazy Thanksgiving host. Cooking isn’t my pride and joy, so while I do want to have a delicious meal, I don’t really stress about it. If you’d like your Thanksgiving to be a little less stressful, let yourself off the hook this year with these tips.
The Lazy Mom’s Guide to Thanksgiving
1. Let your guests entertain the kids. You’re in the kitchen. You shouldn’t have to worry about whether Billy is climbing into the fireplace or whether little Bob is pulling his sister’s hair.
2. Pick one special menu item. My husband and I made a fantastic butternut squash soup last year to kick the meal off, and it was so tasty I would have been happy had that been all we ate. That’s a lie (stuffing!), but it was that good. Knock your guests’ socks off with one dish, and you’ll be cruising for the rest of the meal.
3. Don’t be afraid to outsource. I don’t like to spend my day slaving away in the kitchen on Thanksgiving when I could be drinking wine and relaxing, so I outsource a couple of items. I know turkey isn’t a hard thing to make, but we got a smoked turkey one year and it’s been hard to go back to DIY oven-roasted. We also get this amazing sausage stuffing from a local market and it is well worth the inconvenience and expense when our eyes roll back in our heads from its deliciousness.
4. Let there be wine. Drink up! Then, even if you burn the rolls or ruin another side item you won’t care. Besides, who will notice when one menu item out of 20 isn’t perfect?
5. Do a fridge check. In the euphoria that follows setting a big Thanksgiving table, it’s easy to forget an item in the fridge or in the oven. Check the fridge for cranberry sauce. Check the oven for those rolls. Make sure the gravy isn’t left on the stove.
6. Be lazy but not too lazy. Be sure to get moving with a pre-Thanksgiving Day turkey trot or a post-meal walk—or both! My husband and I will be doing a Thanksgiving morning 5K for the first time and we are so excited.
How do you rank on the Thanksgiving scale of laziness? It’s probably my favorite holiday of the year because I don’t stress out about any of it too much! —Erin