About 20 years ago we made a major decision about Thanksgiving. I cleaned and cooked and baked and polished for a week before the "big day". It was common for us to have 20+ people as guests.
By the time the "DAY" came, I was low on thanks givings and wanted the guests to leave before they arrived.
No one noticed any of the work I did, and I didn't point it out to them. I was too tired of it all to make many comments at all, and certainly not to talk about all the work that went in to the "DAY".
That dinner I worked so hard on was completely trashed within 30 minutes from the time they sat down until the time they moved into the living room.
Being the gracious host, I did all the clean up, too, including making up "doggy bags" for them to take home so they wouldn't have to work in their own kitchens the next few days.
By the time they all left, I was heading for the clean up work in the dining room and kitchen. It was indeed an unholy mess! Clean off the table's used dishes, goblets, glasses, silver.....you know what I am talking about. And that beautiful white table cloth I worked so hard ironing now held cranberries, gravy, crumbs, pie crusts, wine...............Get the picture??
Then our daughter moved to the East Coast. No family around.
I brazenly brought up the subject of not doing Thanksgiving dinners any more. Much to my surprise, it didn't take much to convince DH that was a good idea.
So we came up with this stunning and successful plan:
Go to a fast food (Dairy Queen in our case), have a fast food meal, and then go to the movies. At the movies we got popcorn and soda. Didn't eat all of it, so we brought it home and had ready-made snacks.
Having no "DAY" leftovers, we did not eat mashed potatoes swimming in gravy, nor stuffing made with lots of butter, no candied yams, no green beans smothered in mushroom sauce, no garlic blue cheese salad dressing, no wine, no bread and rolls, no pies, no hor d'overs, no cheese balls and crackers, no egg nog, no whipped cream. Not even any dried out turkey left out too long after the dinner was finished.
Nope. We just had buttered popcorn, Dr. Pepper at the movie theatre and had some left over to take home, and a hamburger and french fries at Dairy Queen. Oh yeah. I forgot. We split a vanilla shake at Dairy Queen, too.
Not quite as healthy food wise, but energy wise, cost wise, work wise.......but surely a day for THANKSGIVING!!
the TURKEY was especially grateful!