If I had to pick one Holiday that “takes the cake”, or pie for that matter, it would be Thanksgiving. Politics aside, something about having one day to gather with friends and family and reflect on all that we are thankful for, warms my heart. Oh and it’s a day to eat, drink, eat, drink and eat some more, till our buttons on our pants bust open (thankfully this has yet to happen but I take extra precaution and wear leggings or unbutton my pants sparing myself the embarrassment). To be honest, I love Thanksgiving, it’s the one Holiday I have always hosted and prepared myself since I have been married to my hubby (7 years!) and every year I seem to pull it off and enjoy it as well!
Table Décor and Centerpieces
I was recently in Target, strolling through the “dollar section” (everything is now $3-$7…. ha! dollar my arse, still love it though!) and they had the cutest things for thanksgiving. I wanted to go berserk and spend a small fortune there for my Thanksgiving table but I know better than that. This year, like I do every year, I will create my own centerpieces and table settings with things I have around the house, or even outside. I never spend money on my table setting, and if I do its usually under five dollars. Every year each table is different and unique. Instead of writing about ideas, I did a quick video on some go to ideas I have used to decorate my table for the holidays.
Here are some of the mock settings I put together:
Like I mentioned these are just ideas! I could have gone on for over an hour with all the great ideas I have implemented over the years or discovered on Pinterest (click here for more table décor ideas on a budget.)
The Turkey Food and Finances
The most important aspect (after family of course), Good ole Turkey Tom. I remember my first thanksgiving as a wife, and being away from my family. I was hosting a bunch of my husband’s work buddies in our tiny little first apartment. I was preparing the whole meal myself, I was excited and nervous. I have helped my mom with Thanksgiving sides for years but never the turkey… I was scared to giblets. Turkey is the main course, the highlight of the meal, and if I ruined it I would feel like a complete and utter failure. One thing I knew I had to do: brine it. My mom always brought a brining mix and hers always came out delicious. Only problem was, we were in the middle of nowhere and brining mix was unheard of in our tiny town. SO I got created and found one online and IT WAS THE BEST TURKEY WE HAVE EVER HAD. In fact, one of my husband’s buddies who is a food snob still talks about how good the turkey was. Since then I have used the same recipe and it never disappoints, plus its cheaper than buying some stored brine mixture! So without further ado, I will share with you my secret to the best brined Turkey, click here you won’t be disappointed!
Thanksgiving food can really cause some weight loss…in your wallet (I wish I could say waistline but let’s be real). But it doesn’t have to be – that is why it is so important to plan ahead. I always check out sales in October and if I see a good deal, I stock up and get it then. Especially when it comes to the turkey. There are so many ways to save on a turkey, I always watch for a sale and purchase them then. Last year The commissary had a deal where you buy certain items and money was put towards your turkey!! Best part was many of the items you had to buy were all staples in a thanksgiving meal. I have noticed many coupons and sales cater towards the foods we eat for the holidays, so just like anything always use coupons and check sales and plan ahead!
One great way to cut down on cost and work is have everyone attending bring one of their favorite thanksgiving sides, or desserts. Most people love doing this because everyone has that one favorite dish or recipe they just have to have…mine is corn casserole and my mom’s mashed potatoes (they have cream and cream cheese in them. yummy). Plan accordingly and you may only have to cook the turkey and set the table….and if you have really nice guests they may help clean up afterwards too 🙂
So there we have it, how to host a great thanksgiving on a budget. Food and décor aside, this holiday is really about being thankful for everything we have and spending some quality time with family and friends, and we don’t need decorations or lots of food for that. What are some of your go to food and décor ideas on a budget for Thanksgiving? Please comment and share! Bon Apetit!