Journal 22 asks Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece a few questions about what makes her Thanksgiving so special, in addition to our top tips for prepping for the upcoming holiday.
WHY IS THANKSGIVING IMPORTANT TO YOUR FAMILY?
Having spent several years in New York as a student, I have always celebrated Thanksgiving. However, it is in more recent years that the tradition has really resonated with my family, especially my father. I think it is because it is rarer and rarer that we are all in one room sharing a dinner together and it reinforces how special family is and how we should be grateful for all the love and happiness we have in our lives.
WHAT IS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE OF THE DAY?
I don't know if this is the case with other families, but my children absolutely adore Turkey legs. I have to cook extra legs just to keep the peace!
It would have to be a traditional sage and sausage stuffing… just delicious!
Thanksgiving is only two weeks away and if you're hosting dinner at your home, it can all become overwhelming very quickly. Below are a few helpful tips to get you prepared for the upcoming holiday.
- First, you’ll want to create a guest list, so you can get an idea of how many people you'll be cooking for. Next, send out invitations. While hard invites are beautiful (and if time is not on your side), try using a company like Paperless Post.
- As Guests start to RSVP, this is the perfect opportunity to ask about any food allergies they may have.
- Once you have a final headcount for dinner, start putting a menu together, find the recipes you want to use and make your master grocery list.
- If you are a guest attending a dinner, find out ahead of time what you can contribute to the evening or organize a well thought out host gift.
- Now it’s time to figure out where to place your friends and family around the table. Try using Anya Hindmarch's Monogrammed Leather Seating Chart, it's the perfect holiday helper and easy to shuffle around guests if you change your mind or someone drops out. Always aim for a balanced table with everyone's personality traits in mind and make a point to separate couples. As the host, sit closest to the kitchen so that you can clear plates or grab more wine without disturbing guests.
- Two Weeks Before: Stock up on all non-perishable items, order an organic turkey, place orders for flower arrangements and create a tasteful playlist.
- The Week Before: Make sure your home is cleaned from top to bottom. Go through all your linens, serving pieces, fine china, and wine glasses to make sure they are clean, pressed, and polished.
- Days Before: Make and freeze gravy, turkey brine and chill the wine.
- The Night Before: Bake pies, prep as many ingredients as possible, set the table and make a detailed cooking schedule for the day of Thanksgiving.
- The Day of Thanksgiving: Consider hiring extra help to make sure the day goes more smoothly and aim to sit down and enjoy a Thanksgiving feast around 3:00pm.
- Children: To keep kids busy until dinner time, set up an arts and craft table. They can cut out colorful Fall leaves for everyone to write what they are thankful for.
At the end of the evening after the dishes are done, the pies, coffee and tea are served, get everyone together for festive games by the fire.
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