Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope you find some helpful hints for organizing your time and space. My passions are to help you make home a refuge instead of a crisis center, and to help you function in peace rather than chaos - at home or at work. I have switched my main blog to 1-2-3 ... Get Organized on WordPress, so please visit me there.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
You’ll probably be cooking some special meals during the holiday season from Thanksgiving to New Years, whether it’s just for the family or for guests. Take some stress out of the season by planning those meals or special occasions. Here are a few tips:
- Determine which special holiday meals you’ll be preparing. Will you be hosting any parties?
- Decide what you will serve for each special meal or party. Make a list for each event. Make sure you have a balance of protein, starch, something green and something red/orange/yellow. Try to avoid a lot of last-minute or time-consuming recipes.
- Do you have enough dinnerware, glasses, silverware, linens, and serving pieces?
- Are there some items you could prepare in advance - breads, desserts, cornbread for cornbread stuffing, etc.? Plan when you will cook some of these recipes and write it on your schedule, so you can space it out and avoid last-minute stress.
- If you are having guests, take them up on their offers to bring something!
- For each week, plan your menus and make a shopping list. Try to go shopping only once a week to save those time-costly trips back to the grocery store. During such a busy time, try to piggy-back from one meal to another. Cook a roast, and use the leftovers for beef stroganoff, for example. Plan simple regular meals during the holiday season to reduce your stress level.
- Have some easy-to-prepare foods on hand if you have a disaster day: frozen ravioli, ingredients for wraps, chicken tenderloins, for example.
- Have some ideas in mind for using leftover turkey: chow mein, stir fry, pasta salads, etc. Use leftover ham in soups or pasta salads. Freeze extra turkey or ham in meal-size portions for the future when you are not weary of these meats.
Even though it takes time to plan your holiday meals and your regular meals, you’ll save yourself time and stress by organizing your menus. You won’t be making last-minute trips to the grocery store, you won’t forget ingredients, and you’ll have what you need.
You’ll be able to welcome your guests or have a special meal for your family without stressing! What a refreshing way to celebrate!
Related posts: Destressing Christmas, Part 1 - Think Through Your Expectations, Destressing Christmas, Part 2 - Thinking Through the Needs of Your Family and Friends, Destressing Christmas, Part 3 - Smart Gift-Giving, Destressing Christmas, Part 4 - Organizing Your Cleaning and Decorating, Destressing Christmas, Part 5 - Mapping Out Your Calendar
Posts from 2007: Destressing Christmas, Part 1 - Think through your expectations, Destressing Christmas, Part 2 - Think through your family/friendship needs and commitments, Destressing Christmas, Part 3 - Think through gifts, Destressing Christmas, Part 4 - Think through cleaning/decorating/entertaining, Destressing Christmas, Part 5 - Think through your health, Destressing Christmas, Part 6 - Think through your calendar, Organizing Your Holiday Meals