There’s No Place Like Home For Holidays Dinner: Holiday Checklist

Time to mull over the There’s No Place Like Home for Holidays dinner holiday checklist.  Festive gets a lot of mileage at our house, and why not? It’s a wonderful time of year that should be embraced for what it is- a time to celebrate with family and friends that are like family.  Decorative tablescaping and delicious times are upon us, and some of us need a holiday helping hand.  From the kitchen to the turkey to the table to the tinsel to the tree, things are beginning to get busy.  The more holiday helper help and hints I can offer, the merrier and less holiday rushed things will be.  It’s never too early to begin the holiday checklist plan and prep.  Here’s holiday hoping the There’s No Place Like Home For Holidays dinner holiday checklist comes in holiday handy.


2 weeks to go:

Plan menu and guest list.

Find out from guest who would like to help what dish they would like to bring.


Take inventory of pantry stock and recipe ingredients.

Make out grocery list.

1 week to go:

Plan tablescape theme.  Traditional? New Traditional? Vintage?


Take inventory of place settings making sure to have enough on hand. Placemats?  China?  Crystal?  Flatware?  Linens?

Time to go to the grocery store for the turkey and non-perishable food items. When deciding on how big of a turkey to purchase, allow 1 to 2 pounds of meat per person.


Make sure roasting pan is large enough to fit turkey.  Consider using a meat thermometer to help take the guesswork out of when the bird is done. Now is the time to purchase these items.

Let the dessert planning begin!  How about adding a new or vintage cake or pie plate to this year’s holiday finery?

Take a beverage inventory.  Stock the bar.  How about a new beverage dispenser or vintage pitcher for an impressive look with a nod to convenience?  Stylish convenience works!


5 days to go:

Prep dishes, flatware and stemware.


Take a chair inventory.  Uncle Joe and Aunt Betty don’t want to sit in the kid’s beanbag chair.


Fill salt and pepper shakers, sugar bowl and sweetener dish.

3 days to go:

Turkey Time!  Remove turkey from freezer and place in refrigerator to begin the thawing process.


Company is coming!  Clean house accordingly. Helpful hint: Decorative baskets and storage cubes come in mighty handy as a stylish storage solution.  All eyes on the decorative basket= a clutter distraction.


2 days to go:

Take inventory of holiday hospitality guest room essentials.  Clean and stock guest bedrooms and bathrooms with fresh linens and paper goods.


You know that lightly damp dishtowel left over from last night’s KP duty? On your way to the laundry room with it, hit the holiday table and chairs dusting high notes.  Two tasks taken care of with one swipe.


Set out candles, arrange centerpiece, set table with linens, placemats, chargers and place cards.

1 day to go:

Make cornbread for dressing.


Chop vegetables and store in Ziplock bags in refrigerator.

Let the dessert baking begin!  Cakes really do taste better the next day after baking.  All the flavors and spices do their thing and the result is next day taste fabulous.

homemade- carrot- cake

Fill soap dispensers and paper towel holders in kitchen.


Set out dinnerware, glasses, serving pieces, dishes, bowls and platters. Turn over or cover with dishtowels until next day.


The Big Event!

Preheat oven.

Take turkey out of refrigerator, season to taste, and place in roaster. Approximate roasting time for a thoroughly defrosted 12-14 lb. unstuffed turkey is  3-3 ½ hours roasted at  325°F until done.


About a half hour before the turkey’s finished, take it out of the oven. Insert a meat thermometer into the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast. You are looking for a temperature of 165 degrees F.  If you don’t have a thermometer simply pierce the turkey with a fork.  The juices should run clear. Allow the turkey to set 20 to 30 minutes before carving to allow juices to saturate the meat evenly.


Chill beverages.


Prepare other side dishes, salads and desserts while turkey is roasting.

Prep coffee maker for after dinner coffee.

Above all, remember to enjoy the beauty, food, fellowship and fruits of your holiday labor of love!

Love your style!

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