Prepping for the Holidays

roasted turkey on white ceramic plate
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on

For as organized as I like to think I am, I am terrible at prepping for the holidays. I’ve lost count of how many trips to the grocery store we’ve made at this point. We are having my sister and her family over for Thanksgiving. Preparations began a few weeks ago when we ordered a pre-cooked turkey and some mashed potatoes from Whole Foods. I like a relaxing Thanksgiving, where the family can spend quality time with one another without being overly concerned about cooking. A pre-cooked turkey means (a) all I have to do is heat it up, and (b) a delicious bird, no matter what, but mainly because I am not destroying it by trying to cook it myself.

In the past we’ve ordered a full Thanksgiving meal, but this year, we ordered the turkey and mashed potatoes, and figured we could handle the stuffing, gravy, and other simple sides ourselves. The “other simple sides” meant a trip to the grocery store to buy stuffing. We bought extra stuffing because I make turkey hash the day after Thanksgiving and stuffing is one of those things that there never seems to be enough of. We bought vegetables, and gravy, and cranberry sauce. We have rolls to make in the oven.

We got to thinking it would be good to have some snacks during the day so a few days later we were back at the store for cheese, crackers, chips, salsa. Of course, Thanksgiving isn’t the only meal we’ll be having together, since my sister’s family will be here for several days. We added a run to Costco for blueberry muffins.

I thought we were low on beverages so this morning I went to the store to pick up some more soft drinks. This evening, it occurred to me that we didn’t have an onion, and I need an onion for the turkey hash. Then, too, we were running low on some gingerbread cookies we like. As I type these words, Kelly has run off to Trader Joe’s to get a few extra boxes of those cookies for good measure.

There is going to be some cold mornings so we made a trip for some extra firewood. And I’ve promised my brother-in-law a 6-pack of beer and some tequila. On Wednesday, therefore, there will be a trip to a local market that has a massive variety of beer from around the world.

While I can’t be certain, I suspect there will be a trip or two to the store tomorrow for something.

The whole point of this obviously rigorous planning on my part is to avoid stores of any kind on Thursday and Friday. To make sure we avoid any stores on Friday, when everyone is rushing to the stores for Black Friday sales, we’ve obtained tickets for our two families for Mount Vernon. We’ve been to Mount Vernon several times, but my sister and her family haven’t. It is a good time of year to visit. When it is cold out, the often have hot cider available. Still, I am not convinced we will manage to avoid a grocery store on Thursday or Friday. Every year, no matter how well we plan, it always seems as if we have to run to the store for something.

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