By: Stefan Fletcher
Thanksgiving. A time for family, food, and frivolous, knee-jerk acquisitions at your favorite retail outlets. Sounds pleasant, right? Amongst all the festivities, there do lie some potential pitfalls that can trouble your favorite Turkey-filled (or Tofurky for those so disposed) holiday. Below, find three tips for enhancing the Thanksgiving experience for you and, in all likelihood, those around you as well.
Perhaps the most important tip. Do not, under any circumstances, show up to the Thanksgiving weekend unprepared. If you are responsible for making a part of the meal, try not to leave the construction of your famous green bean casserole until you’re barreling out of the door to your parents’ house with a 75% higher chance said casserole will end up on your driveway instead of the dining room table. This also goes for shopping over the holiday weekend. Check out sites like blackfriday.com or bfads.net before you enter the battle royale known as Black Friday. It will save you time and a lot of energy knowing what’s out there and, well, what isn’t.
Notwithstanding my last blog post for Magnet may about it being OK to indulge in food, there is something to be said for having some self-control around the stuffing. The average American consumes 4,500 calories for their Thanksgiving meal. Stuffing, turkeys, yams, and whatever that odd quasi-fluorescent marshmallow “salad” some of you have been passing around the table for years all contribute to the potential for a consumption malfunction. Now, for some this is acceptable and just a part of the day. However, for those who are concerned about eating the equivalent of seven Whoppers in one sitting, some advice: Be mindful of portion sizes by using smaller dinner plates, choose lighter fare for desert, and steam your veggies without the cream that typically might be lathered on top of them. Another option might be to get the family moving after your big meal rather than lulling into the usual food-induced nap which begins about 30 minutes after heading to Turkey- town.
You might be one of the 25 million plus people who will be flying home this holiday season or one of the many more who will be using land-based transport to get where you need to go. If so, you may want to pack some patience along with your toothbrush and favorite novel or electronic device. Long lines at the airport, backups on the highway, or simply hearing Uncle Jim talk about his misspent youth for the 10th straight Thanksgiving all might leave you more irritable than your usual merry self. To manage this, bring along a distraction for your travels or, if engaged in tedious conversation, try to remember that in about 40 years you might be in need of an enthralled audience to talk about the ‘good old times’ once or twice a year. Overall, remember to enjoy time with family, friends, and football this Thanksgiving and resist the temptation to escape the kitchen area like it was Alcatraz when the call goes out to pitch-in with washing the dishes after the meal!