There’s no heavy lifting today, only some more planning.
How are you serving your meal? Is it family style around the table or are you setting up a buffet where everyone helps themselves? Now it’s time to take a look at your menu and take an inventory of your serving dishes.
Next to each menu item write down a brief description of the dish it will be served in ie glass 9 x 13 or white oval casserole. If these dishes aren’t in every day use, place a post-it or 3 x 5 card with the menu item’s name in the bottom of each dish. Now if people want to be helpful on Thanksgiving they will need less direction. I know I don’t communicate very well when I have a bunch of dishes cooking, each in a different stage of completion.
If you don’t have enough dishes, check thrift stores and yard sales this weekend. Otherwise the foil pans work well for buffet style, but I wouldn’t trust them to be passed around a dinner table. No one wants grandma to get a lap-full of scalding hot macaroni and cheese. If you have family coming to eat, it’s ok to ask if you can borrow a serving dish for the big day. Just don’t return it dirty.
Here’s a point I forgot when planning this year’s event: serving utensils. Match a serving utensil appropriate to the planned menu item and write that down next to the serving dish description or on the 3×5. Make sure each of these utensils is present and accounted for. I’ve lost quite a few to the sandbox in the backyard or points unknown.
Since you’re already looking at your serving dishes also give some thought to the look of the table overall. This year was the first year I gave any thought to decorating and I brought in my friend Heidi for guidance She’s the creative soul behind the candycorn centerpiece. I’ll post a quick tutorial this afternoon. Also a quick thank you to Leigh Ann Garrett for a few other decorating ideas.
Are you playing catch up? Check out Holidays with Home-Ec 101 to see every post in this series.