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Thanksgiving Can Be a Low-Stress Holiday

 Thanksgiving Can Be  Low-Stress 

If You Follow These Steps

 

 
 

      Talk to your relatives to determine who will be hosting Thanksgiving dinner and any other activities that may revolve around this day. Offer up your house only under a couple of circumstances: if you host it every year, if it’s your turn to host a major holiday, if hosting it somewhere else will put a tremendous amount of stress on an elderly or ill member of the family or if you really want to host it.

                             

 Thanksgiving Can Be  Low-Stress 

If You Follow These Steps

 

 

 
      Step 1

      Talk to your relatives to determine who will be hosting Thanksgiving dinner and any other activities that may revolve around this day. Offer up your house only under a couple of circumstances: if you host it every year, if it’s your turn to host a major holiday, if hosting it somewhere else will put a tremendous amount of stress on an elderly or ill member of the family or if you really want to host it.
   2.
      Step 2

      Determine what tasks will need to be divided up. If you’re hosting the festivities, you have more control over doling out responsibilities. If not, take initiative at least for your own sake and state from the beginning what you would be willing to help with. Because you’ve spoken up early on, you’ll have a better chance of the hostess giving you the tasks you requested, thereby making your life easier. Remember also that “helping out” doesn’t necessarily have to mean giving a ton of money to buy a turkey or slaving over three homemade pumpkin pies. Get creative. If your strength is cleaning, offer to spend the weekend (or Wednesday) before Thanksgiving helping the hostess get her house in order. If you’re creative, offer to undertake the place settings and decor. If you’re an active person, volunteer to arrange activities for the kid’s table, create the football pools and keep time on the cooking so that the others can relax when their dishes are in the oven.
   3.
      Step 3

      Tell your immediate family members ahead of time once you know what responsibilities have been assigned. Think about how they could assist you with these duties and make it a family activity. Maybe your daughter really wants to learn how to bake or your son has been dying for an excuse to use the family car (a grocery store trip would be the perfect excuse). Just as you should play to your strengths when volunteering for certain tasks, you should play to your family’s strengths to alleviate stress from yourself.
   4.
      Step 4

      Make a list of all the tasks that will need to be accomplished, ingredients that will need to be bought and items that need to be transported. Create a timeline for when these activities need to be done and who can help with what. Because you started early, your timeline should reflect that, thereby allowing you to finish some of the less urgent tasks early.
   5.
      Step 5

      Talk to any family members who typically take a long time getting ready, especially on holidays. Explain to them that this is a high-stress holiday that involves lots of preparation and travel, and that you would appreciate it if they planned their outfit at least by the night before. Be sure to organize your outfit ahead of time as well.
   6.
      Step 6

      Put any items that do not need to be refrigerated by the front door the night before Thanksgiving. This way they’ll be ready to grab and go the next day. Make a checklist of anything you may need to grab from the fridge so you won’t leave anything behind.
   7.
      Step 7

      Set the mood for the day by beginning your morning early and bonding over a family activity such as watching the a Thanksgiving Day parade or discussing what you’re thankful for. Whatever the activity is, keep it light and celebratory; that mood should carry over through the rest of the day.
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Nellie Day is a freelance writer based out of Hermosa Beach, CA. She has her Master’s degree in broadcast journalism from USC, and Bachelors’ degrees in English and sociology from UC Irvine. Ms. Day’s work can regularly be seen on newsstands, where her specialties include weddings, pets, real estate, electronics, product reviews, business, architecture and design, Southern California, food and wine, and travel and tourism.

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