It's a shame that many of us stress ourselves out to the point of exhaustion around holiday time, when we should be in a joyous and relaxed mood. For those whose lives are moving at warp speed, here are a few reminders as we approach the holiday dedicated to giving thanks.
1. If you purchased or plan to purchase a turkey weighing 21 pounds or less, you should make sure that you've moved that bird from the freezer to the refrigerator because he's going to need time to thaw.
2. Think about it. Is there anyone in your circle of friends and family or beyond, who may be alone on Thanksgiving. Not that there's anything wrong with a contemplative day alone. But give it some thought, and consider inviting someone who might like to share in your tradition and ritual of thanks.
3. Any plans for a centerpiece on your table, aside from the bird? If you think funds are too tight this year to spend a little extra on a centerpiece of holiday decorating, you can, as Dorothy learned, find that you need not look further than your own back yard.
Fortunately we live in an area of extraordinary natural beauty. If you wander into the woods you are likely to find Bittersweet and other wild plants that could make a wonderful centerpiece for your table.
4. Take time to make a list of everything you need to accomplish before your guests arrive on T-Day. If you create a production schedule well in advance and alot a reasonable amount of time for all that you need to check off your to-do list, you will be able to actually enjoy this special day rather than feeling overwhelmed and rushed.
Like any good production schedule, begin with the final goal and work backwards to figure out what needs to be done and when.
To keep the stress to a minimum, if you are inviting friends and family to your home, you may want to ask each guest to bring one dish or one item -- such as a loaf of bread or ask some or all of your guests to arrive in time to help prepare some of the side dishes together -- so that it becomes a fun and collaborative experience.
5. Remember the true meaning of the day as it approaches. This is the harvest of the year. This is the time when nature has reached its pinnacle of abundance before we go into the dark and barren time of the year.
As you shop, clean and prepare for the holiday, keep in mind that this is supposed to be joyous and a time to consciously give thanks for all that we have.