According to Stress Management Expert, Bella Mandel, many women set themselves up for a stressful Thanksgiving when they try to become wonder woman overnight. Women who seek to shine during the holiday season will often offer their family the best decorations, best foods, best atmosphere anywhere on earth. And all without help.
But with every new demand for perfection, a stress free Thanksgiving becomes less and less likely. So what can women do who find themselves going half mad every Thanksgiving? The answers are simple, but not always easy to adopt.
Simplify the Feast
If you want a stress free Thanksgiving don’t over-commit. Create a clear menu in advance with dishes that you have already cooked many times (there’s nothing quite as stressful as trying new recipes for the Thanksgiving feast. If close family or friends are attending the Thanksgiving feast, have them chip in and help. If each guest bought just one dish with them, think of the time it would save you in the kitchen. Such an approach can introduce new recipes to the meal and still give you a stress free Thanksgiving.
Decorate the Table
A great way to have a stress free Thanksgiving and still enjoy yourself is to replace hard work with fun preparations. Instead of cooking everything under the sun to fill the table, supplement a normal menu with stunning table decorations. Here are 10 dazzling ideas for decorating your Thanksgiving dinner table with a few homemade crafts.
Select a Moderator
For a stress free Thanksgiving turn the feast into a fun occasion. No more wondering whose going to keep the conversation going, or whose going to sour the atmosphere by settling old family feuds at the Thanksgiving table. Instead, choose the liveliest family member to be in charge of keeping the atmosphere at the table smooth and stress free. Thanksgiving rhyming, witty poems are ideal for that purpose (and here’s where you can find them). Have these poems at the ready to entertain, and pull out Thanksgiving trivia questions and jokes for even more fun.
Set Kiddy Table Rules
If you want a stress free Thanksgiving make sure the kiddy table runs its own show. Put the eldest kid in charge, and appoint everyone else as assistants. Let the kids know in advance that you will be giving out awards for the best-behaved revelers. Have the kids decorate their own table with Thanksgiving crafts for kids. And prepare a spot in the house for the kids to escape to when they finish their feast twice as fast as the adults.
Set the Atmosphere
For a stress free Thanksgiving, you need to transition from feast maker to reveler in minutes. Set time aside for you to shower and dress. You need to feel as if you are coming to a celebration for which you will be thankful. Your helper should put on soothing music in the house and create a welcoming atmosphere for when you come out all decked for the holiday. A small, secret gift from that person to you would be ideal at that point (maybe you can drop a hint). If you can re-enter the dining room feeling like a guest (albeit one who will do a lot of serving), you will be sure to have a stress free Thanksgiving.
Be True to Yourself
In trying to create the perfect environment for everyone else, it’s easy to create a stressful one for you. Don’t adopt foreign standards. Do what you think is best. If others complain, well too bad. You are more likely to be successful at creating what you love and approve, than you would at trying to imitate what another would prefer.
1. Stress Management Site: How to Enjoy a Stress Free Thanksgiving
2. All Women’s Talk: 6 Tips for a Stress Free Thanksgiving