35 Days to Christmas! Set The Thanksgiving Table

Dashing around at the last minute, chanting, "Where's the serving spoon, where's the serving spoon?" is a holiday tradition that can stand to be forgotten.

Cut chaos on the big day: set the table early!

If you're hosting Thankgiving dinner, set the table a day or two ahead. Place a small sticky note inside serving dishes to remind you (or your helpers) what goes where.

You'll have time to shine up a tarnished platter or rout out missing serving pieces--in blessed privacy.

36 Days to Christmas! Double Up On Side Dishes

When cooking for the Thanksgiving feast, plan to double or triple amounts for any freezer-friendly dishes, and tuck the extras into the freezer for later use.

Good freezer candidates include unbaked pie shells, unbaked pies, unbaked stuffing and--surprise!--mashed potatoes. Doubling up when you cook for Thanksgiving will ease the kitchen load in the weeks ahead!

Cook once, feast twice ... for an organized holiday season.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes Recipe for Freezer Cooking

37 Days to Christmas! Make Thanksgiving Blessings Mix!

Will you share your blessings with family and friends this year? Make your blessings visible with Thanksgiving Blessings Mix!

This easy-to-assemble craft gift makes great Thanksgiving table favors, classroom treats or workplace favors. A savory snack mix, each ingredient symbolizes one of our nation's many blessings.

A free printable gift tag makes it easy to make and share this Thanksgiving craft gift.

Thanksgiving Craft: Make Thanksgiving Blessings Mix

42 Days to Christmas! Tabletop Check

Thanksgiving morning is no time to discover stains on the tablecloth, unpack tarnished flatware or to recall that last season saw the shattering of your favorite turkey platter. (That darn dog!)

Prepare to set a pretty table with a pre-season tabletop check. Inventory and inspect table linens, napkins, serving pieces, holiday china and serving pieces.

Do you need to purchase replacements? Prices are best several weeks before the season, when housewares stores advertise tabletop goods at sale prices. Add any replacements to the seasonal shopping list.

Will you need to polish silver? Add the chore to the calendar, or delegate to an energetic child in need of spending money.

Launder linens and plan centerpieces and candles for an elegant table without the last-minute stress.

Track your findings on a free inventory planner page:

Holiday Tabletop Checklist

46 Days to Christmas! Plan Thanksgiving Dinner

Turkey Day cometh ... will you be ready? If you're hosting the meal, it's time to plan.

What will you serve--and what will you serve with? Who will sit where--and where will you place the dreaded children's table? Will you have time to make or buy a pretty centerpiece?

Menus, seating, serving and tabletop, it's time to put it all together now. (Or maybe it's not to late to scour the town for Thanksgiving dinner reservations ....):

Holiday Menu Planner

53 Days to Christmas! Swap Holiday Decorations

Driving to work or school today, it's hard to avoid the splattered remains of Jack O'Lantern on the street--and the bowl of Halloween candy is looking mighty picked over after the week's Trick-or-Treaters. Time for a decor swap!

Tuck Halloween-specific decorations into a box, and replace them with Autumn or Thanksgiving-themed items to keep holiday decorations looking fresh and timely.