Organic Free Range Homemade Thanksgiving Turkey with Sides

Turkey Day Tips and Tricks

By Tyler R. Morrissey

Thanksgiving Day is almost here. It’s a time where families across America will sit down together to express gratitude and thanks for all that they have. It’s also a day that’s typically filled with delicious food and quality time with loved ones. While most of your preparations have already begun, we have gathered a few last minute tips to help ensure your Thanksgiving weekend is a memorable one for all the right reasons.

Getting There

Night view busy UK Motorway traffic jam at night.

Today will be the busiest travel day of the year. AAA is projecting that today’s holiday rush will reach its highest level in over a decade, or 4.8 percent more cars on America’s highway than in 2017. The Boston Globe offers some handy tips to help you get through the day with as little stress as possible. If you are taking a plane to your destination, make sure you downloaded your airline carrier’s app to check in or check the status of your flight on your way to the airport. Once you’re at the airport make sure you don’t have any unnecessary items on your person while going through TSA, and don’t forget to remove your laptop from its case for screening. Finally if your commute to Thanksgiving dinner includes a drive, give yourself extra time to get to your destination and use an app like Waze to avoid traffic tie-ups.

Plan the Menu

Cook taking ready fried baked chicken with vegetables from the oven. Healthy cooking concept.

Maybe this is your first year hosting Turkey Day and you’re a little nervous. Planning an entire Thanksgiving menu can be a daunting task, especially for a first timer, but thankfully NBC News has provided a few helpful tips. When it comes to lining up all your dishes, don’t feel like you need to provide every side dish. If your family and friends are attending, encourage them to bring a side dish or dessert to take some of the pressure off. Also to ease your stress, take the time to double check your cabinets to make sure you have all the ingredients you’ll need for the big day.

Which Turkey is Right for You?

Whole grilled chicken with mushrooms and potatoes close-up in a baking dish. horizontal

Hopefully you have already gone to the grocery store and checked off everything on your shopping list for your Thanksgiving meal. If you haven’t even set foot in the store yet, there’s still time to purchase your turkey and all the trimmings. Refinery 29 recently sat down with five chefs who gave their expert opinions on how to buy the right turkey for your feast. For example Jennifer Carroll, a co-executive chef and partner at Spice Finch, Philadelphia recommends buying a turkey that’s big enough to yield leftovers. A good rule of thumb is to account for 2.5 pounds of meat per person. Nyesha Arrington is an executive chef and co-owner at Native, Los Angeles. She suggests opting for an organic turkey this year. Organic turkeys are full of flavor and can be pre-cooked early in the morning.

Set the Table

Autumn Thanksgiving dining table place setting on an old rustic wood table with candles and defocused Christmas lights

On Thursday morning the big day will arrive and you’ll need to set your table of thanks. A popular decoration for your home usually involves a centerpiece to make your table pop or some fancy place settings. USA Today has gathered some of 2018’s hottest trends in Thanksgiving table décor. Instead of picking a large centerpiece that takes up space, opt for a nice floral arrangement that will add some color to the table. Your plates will be filled with lots of delicious food and if you want photo worthy place settings consider layering a smaller plate on top of a larger porcelain one.

Brave the Mall

Man holding shopping bags with presents on the street

As quickly as Thanksgiving descended upon us, the holiday will be over, giving way to an unofficial holiday in America, Black Friday. In the early morning hours of Friday, November 23, shoppers will flock to malls and shops as the holiday shopping season kicks off. Business Insider has some advice if you plan on braving the crowds this year. If you do hit the stores early, be extra careful driving in dark conditions. The forecast for the Northeast calls for cold conditions this weekend, so it’s a good idea to dress in layers to avoid becoming overheated in the mall. Also if you do plan on shopping for hours bring a water bottle to avoid dehydration.

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