A memorable Thanksgiving is the official kick-off to the holiday season. And being thankful is good for your health & creates a positive memory. Plan ahead with these 3 tips to enjoy the day. You could be the favorite hostess or the “welcome back” guest if you are prepared (and grateful) to be together.

Thanksgiving is also the official kick-off to the holiday season through Christmas and New Years. It’s time to fill in your Master Gift List and Holiday Calendar if you haven’t done so already.

Here are three simple tips to a memorable Thanksgiving Day celebration and you can cover these bases quickly. With your notes organized for this year and thereafter, each Thanksgiving can become easier.

1. Plan for Your Guests (or Be a Great Guest)

Everyone loves to be invited even if they know they always go to “Mom’s” house or the same friend for Thanksgiving. Call or email your guests a couple days before to let them know you are excited getting together. You can find out what they most enjoy about being together (a food or activity) and be sure to include that in your plans.

2. Plan a Great Meal

List your cooking times so you know how early (or late) you can sleep in on Thanksgiving Day to get your turkey in the oven and still have dinner on time. List cooking times by making notes for a traditional meal, invite others to bring their specialty side dish or dessert, and you’ve simplified the day. Use our traditional Turkey Dinner Menu & Grocery List (Download HERE) as a jumping off point from Simplify Your Holiday Season.

3. Plan Activities for the Day

This can be as simple as a guided “Table Talk” question as “What 2 Things are You Most Thankful for this Past Year?” or as traditional as the morning Macy’s Parade on TV or Football in the afternoon. Others may help at a soup kitchen during the morning preparations. Or call a family member who is alone or relatives across country to let them know you’re thinking of them.

Above all, be flexible and cheerful. No one likes a grumpy guest or frazzled hostess on this relaxing holiday. Get enough sleep and plan ahead to be a welcoming and memorable host. Your guests will be thankful they came to your house or that you were an appreciative guest at theirs.

Wishing you a simply wonderful Thanksgiving!

A memorable menu planner

Your Holiday Menu Plan

The 8-Week Holiday Calendar, Blank Planning Calendar, and Master Gift List are 3 tools that turn seasonal stress into holiday success!  These key handouts are in the Holiday Hub and in Marcia Ramsland’s planning book, Simplify Your Holiday Season, and will keep you on track for a smooth holiday season.