Making a list and checking it twice, Places In The Home for the Holidays Thanksgiving style.
Oops- wrong holiday song but right holiday action.
There’s no time like now to get into the planning mode. Buy now what is on seasonal sale, markdown or clearance. My cabinets runneth over with sale priced canned goods, spices and the Thanksgiving staple of all Thanksgiving staples, chicken broth. Holiday checklists come in so handy. Hey, the Places In The Home Holiday Helper Checklist pdf download is available for your Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner planning convenience.
The day should overflow with an abundance of love, food, family, friends and gratefulness.
It’s Places In The Home for the holidays Thanksgiving style season once again. I’ll be posting new and updated all things Thanksgiving and Holidays posts over these home for the holidays weeks featuring home decor, side dishes, desserts, gift ideas, advice and fun facts for the it’s the most wonderful time of the year decoristas!
It’s T-17 days until the first leg of the holiday season, Thanksgiving. Speaking of a holiday leg, are you thinking Thanksgiving turkey yet? Local grocery stores are preparing large areas in the freezers for the arrival of this traditional dinner star, and I’ve got my eyes out for the sale circulars. Timing is a big consideration in regards to the Thanksgiving turkey. We time the purchase, defrosting, roasting and serving of the bird.
In this pre-Thanksgiving dinner calm before the storm period, I am utilizing my time to gather the roasting pan, carving set, kitchen essentials and necessary information. I thought I might offer a few suggestions to lend a holiday helping hand. Let’s talk turkey.
Roasting the Bird
Roast/bake the turkey at 325 °F using the chart as a guide for approximate roasting times. The turkey is done when the internal temperature reaches a minimum internal temperature of 165 °F. Use a food thermometer to check the turkey in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast. The minimum internal temperature should reach 165 °F for safety.
I’m a fourth generation fan of the granite ware oval roasting pan. Traditions rule in the Places In The Home holiday kitchen, and roasting a turkey like my great grandmother, grandmother and mother did requires a granite ware oval roaster. It speaks holiday to me…
Time saving multitasking marvels of kitchen efficiency are my kind of holiday helping hand! Equally as important as a well-stocked holiday pantry is a well organized holiday baking, cooking and entertaining kitchen.
A cook is only as good as the kitchen and cooking essentials, tools and accessories he or she uses.
Now that the calendar has turned to November I am no longer under obligation to avoid the elephant in the room. I’ve contained my excitement long enough. By all accounts we are in the presence of the Holidays, and I’m ready to get the planning, decorating, baking, cooking and tablescaping underway! I don’t know about you, but I would have no problem settling in, getting cozy and planning for the holidays in this gorgeous space.
Holiday oversaturation is something I guess we all come in contact with in one way or another. I came to better understand the commercial aspect of holiday shopping when the subject of holiday open house planning and prep rolled around. A beautifully crafted holiday celebration complete with decoration and culinary delights does not just happen overnight. Planning and budgeting for holiday gatherings and celebrations begins weeks in advance. When the first leaf hits the ground so do my feet. I’m running full speed ahead straight towards fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. It’s the most wonderful time of the year!
I find what works best for me is to evaluate what decorative and tabletop items will transition beautifully from holiday to holiday. Take color palette choices for example. A red vase filled with black roses used at Halloween can reinvent itself as an appropriate accent in complementing holiday color on both the Thanksgiving and Christmas tablescape. Another wonderful option is to go with gold and silver accessories for the all important touch of elegance. I refer to the metals as the holiday neutrals. Orange goes a long way as a color consideration for fall, Halloween and Thanksgiving decorating, but have you noticed the different shades of orange being used in all forms of Christmas decorating? Verdant, eggplant, mocha and curry are also finding a place on the holiday color wheel.
The Kerr jars I used on my fall tablescape will soon be filled with homemade pear preserves and a dual decorative purpose for Thanksgiving. These chalkboard style fall food gift labels designed by Lia Griffith and hosted by worldlabel.com are designed for your own text. I’m giving the pear preserves in decorated jars as “I’m thankful for you” gifts, and the labels will serve as the place cards for our Thanksgiving tablescape. Click on the image below to download the PDF.
I will be featuring new and classic posts full of home decor accessory resources, ideas, tips, talking all things turkey, recipes and helpful holiday suggestions for feathering and decorating your home for the holidays nest.
Stress is the enemy of a holiday good time, and that we just can’t have! From the planned casual holiday soiree to the not so planned we saw your lights on holiday surprise drop-in, these stock items can cut the stress, welcome guests, ward off the holiday bah humflubug, and make things festive.
Votive candles instantly add that cozy and homey feel to the setting. I don’t know if it’s the warmth they exude or the soft glow, but votive candles create a relaxing atmosphere. Stock up on these home decor and entertaining staples.
Festive need not be expensive. The package sells the product, and a festive presentation impresses the harshest holiday critic. My darling maternal grandmother taught me through her gracious example. She loved Lady Borden Vanilla ice cream- her signature dessert offering. She lived alone, and with single serving sizes not yet on the market, the large container ice cream would often fall victim to freezer burn. What the ice cream lacked in taste was more than made up in serving presentation. She always served two scoops of Lady Borden Vanilla in a Fostoria American glass sherbet dish accompanied by a sterling silver ice cream spoon.
A simple white coffee or decorative holiday mug from the dollar store filled with hot cocoa and garnished with a peppermint stick and marshmallows or red hot apple cider garnished with a cinnamon stick is holiday comfort in a cup! I recommend this recipe for homemade marshmallows from Thomas Keller’s French Laundry Cookbook and a fitting Christmas video featuring Dean Martin’s version of A Marshmallow World.
Marshmallows (French Laundry)
3 envelopes of unflavored Knox gelatin
½ cup cold water
2 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cups corn syrup
¼ cup water
¼ teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
Confectioners’ sugar for dredging
In the bowl of an electric mixer, sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup cold water. Soak for 10 minutes.
Combine sugar, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and boil hard for 1 minute. Pour boiling syrup into gelatin and mix at high speed. Add the salt and beat for 12 minutes. Add vanilla and incorporate into mixture. Scrape into a 9 x 9-inch pan lined with oiled plastic wrap and spread evenly. (Note: Lightly oil hands and spatula or bowl scraper). After pouring marshmallow mixture into the pan, take another piece of plastic wrap and press mixture into the pan.
Let mixture sit for a few hours. Remove from pan, dredge the marshmallow slab with confectioners’ sugar and cut into 12 equal pieces with scissors (the best tool for the job) or a chef’s knife. Dredge each piece of marshmallow in confectioners’ sugar.
Yield: 12 large marshmallows
These tastes just like…. Homemade? Girl Scout Thin Mints? Like the ones my grandmother used to make? That’s the idea! These holiday cookies pack a powerful please and can be picked up at Dollar General, Walmart, Trader Joe’s and Target.
Baby, it’s cold outside. I pick up two or three at a time when they are on holiday special, usually for $1.99. This little touch of homey and cozy is a big hit with our guests as we celebrate the holiday moments of our lives. I remove the wrapper and replace it with raffia, attach a holiday gift tag, and place them in a basket. The inexpensive fleece throws make a nice holiday “from our home to yours” parting gift. Hand them out to your guests to ward off the chill while watching a classic holiday movie or hanging out listening to holiday music. Let’s not forget that a holiday playlist queued up and ready to shuffle is always a hit. Holiday music video #2~
Holiday get-togethers as well as the unexpected drop in visit often turn out to be a stress free and fun time. Stock up, de-stress and enjoy!
I like dining room decorating ideas that deliver year round, classic, and wow factor beauty. I believe these home decor accents and accessories will do exactly that. The magnificent mix and match movement continues to gather decorative momentum, and why not? It’s the sure cure for boring interiors. Ever wonder why a table setting set with mismatched flatware makes such a visual impression? Unique and unconventional styling, different styles and finishes paired together, and furniture placement never fails to catch the eye.
Serving trays have been on my mind over the past few weeks. One tends to give quite a bit of thought to food and drink presentation as she finds herself up to her spices during the season of cocktail parties, holiday open houses, and treat trays for neighbor and friends. When it comes to entertaining and presentation, I take a mental inventory of the formal or informal aspect of the occasion. Pulling out all the stops with the bells and whistles on the frou-frou presentation express is more in line with the treat trays given for corporate gifts than with the cookies, candies, and hot coffee industrial sized goodie trays prepared for Dave the Builder and his engineering c0-w0rkers. You’ve got to know your audience and the serving trays with style that corresponds to said audience.
Table settings and sideboard ideas are the topic of the final installment in the Places In The Home Home For The Holidays series. It’s holiday time, joy is in the air, and help is here. If you have followed this series I hope you have gathered helpful hints, tips and decorative ideas.
Tabletop space can become very limited when entertaining, especially at holiday time. It need not be a problem if there is a sideboard or buffet available. Begin by editing the existing accessories in order to free up the space. I am practicing what I preach, and now our sideboard is set and ready for our Thanksgiving desserts.
Additional china, drinkware and table linens can be conveniently housed as well as flatware.