Easy Organizational Idea: Thanksgiving Survival Kit


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Once upon a time, a girl named… Barrie… went looking for her Thanksgiving recipes.  She knew they were in a pile of other recipes, the ones she meant to file into her recipe binder.  Those recipes, however, were not in the binder just yet (or, ever– they’ve been sitting there over a year) and now the task was to locate the stack of papers, find the recipe in that stack, and then track down the myriad other Thanksgiving recipes scattered in various cookbooks, bookmarked online and dog-eared in magazines.

Plus find the electric knife, baster, twine, and other essential turkey implements scattered throughout the kitchen and basement.

Barrie was overwhelmed.

At this point referring to myself in the third person sounds ridiculous.  Sorry.  Certainly it’s not a new idea, but it dawned on me it would be so much easier if I gathered everything in advance and created a Thanksgiving Survival Kit.  Now I can just pull it out every November and add as needed.  Here’s how I pulled it all together in under an hour, freeing up my life for more important things… like reading blogs.  😉

Step One: I spent a few minutes gathering all my paper recipes and articles, including the dog-eared ones from recent magazines.  I cut out the parts I needed and recycled the rest.

Step Two: Next came the online part.  Trying to cook around a computer is not easy, so I decided to print out the recipes I’ve bookmarked online.  After getting them pulled up online, I pinned them to my Thanksgiving Pinterest board (now they are all organized, and pretty to look at as well).  Then came the printing.

Step Three: Gather them all into a folder.  I know, rocket science, right?  But it’s great to not only have my recipes but my inspiration photos and articles on how to prepare and carve the turkey as well.  When I’m finished with them, my menu, shopping list, and prep schedule will get added.  Next year when I open my folder I’ll have every recipe, article, menu, and shopping list!

Step Four: Last came brainstorming what I’d need to physically prepare the meal.  Here’s the list I came up with.  Anything that I use infrequently went into a small bin so each year I can head down to the basement the week of Thanksgiving and pull out our Survival Kit.  Some things (like the baster and twine) I do use once in awhile, but not often enough to keep in the kitchen.  Might as well store them in the bin, that way I know exactly where they are when the time comes!

butcher’s twine
turkey lifter
gravy separator
electric carving knife
gravy boat
roasting pan
Thanksgiving decor like our pumpkin place cards and vintage pilgrim salt & pepper shakers

Step Five: RELAX.  Not sure what I’ll do with all the time I saved not scrounging around for things next year.  Perhaps sip one of these and get a manicure?  Or maybe just take a shower.  Keeping it real, friends, keeping it real.

What’s your best Thanksgiving organizational tip, and what would you add to the survival kit?
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