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Thanksgiving Real Thanksgiving Thanksgiving is where Christmas really begins. Presented by Real Thanksgiving, this topic explores the activities, the foods, the entertainment and the family time of this classic American holiday.


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  #1  
Old 09-05-2009, 08:52 AM
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Formal or Casual Thanksgiving?

I am interested in how your Thanksgiving meal is served. Do you have a formal setting, with all the family seated at once and served on fine china or is it casual, buffet style on paper plates? Does everyone dress up for the occasion or everyone dresses casual.

Ours has always been very casual buffet style. We get a big table and fill it with all kinds of goodies and everyone helps themselves. I use decorated paper plates, napkins and cups. This seems to work best because my daughter has several homes to visit and they sometimes show up a little later and we still have the food out ready for them to help themselves. Clean up is much easier since we use paper plates, less dishes to wash! I have enough dishes to wash just preparing the food, lol. Everyone dresses casual as well.

Let us know how your Thanksgiving is.
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Old 09-05-2009, 12:01 PM
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We have done every range of formal to VERY casual Thanksgivings. We just do what suits us best at the time. One TG it was just my mom, dad, DH and I, so we just grilled steaks. While I like the formal feeling with the china and all, I will admit it is just SO much easier to clean up afterwards if you use paper plates!
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Old 09-05-2009, 01:11 PM
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I always set a formal table but since I don't have an actual dining room table I have to use a folding table that I get from the fire hall. So it's pretty slender and I can't fit all of the food on the table. I use smaller dishes to put some of the food on the table and then I have a smaller table with warming stations on it so that all of the other food can stay warm. I use my regular plates and silverware even though I don't have a dish washer. I only do one big meal a year so I like to bring it all out. It's a lot of dishes but, my mom usually tackles that for me since I prepare everything. It works out but, the part that I think takes the longest is my mom likes to put everything into smaller containers for the refrigerator and that takes up a lot of time. I think this year I'm just gonna clean everything out of the fridge before dinner so that it's nearly empty and then just put stuff away in the containers that they are in for dinner. That way it will save time and as they empty I can just wash them instead of creating even more dishes by emptying them after dinner.
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Old 09-05-2009, 01:16 PM
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Oh and I forgot to say that we all dress casual. We used to dress nice when I was still living at home with my mom but, now we've loosened up a bit and go casually dressed. It's just easier that way.
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Old 09-05-2009, 01:41 PM
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We serve buffet style, which makes everybody happy (no one gets food that he or she doesn't want), but we always use the china and silverware and cloth napkins. The dishwasher and washing machine are happy to do the cleanup for us.

Dress is casual, but jeans, t-shirts, shorts, or sneakers would be too casual. There have got to be a few dinners per year where we look nice.
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Old 09-05-2009, 02:38 PM
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We are formal and everyone sits down at the table. Sometimes I do place cards (the kids get a kick out of it).
We have always dress-up for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner. My husband and I started with our children and we are blessed to see them as adults doing the same. Now the grandchildren follow our example. To us it's just a form of discipline that always helps in different areas of life.
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:02 PM
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When I was a kid it was pretty formal, we each even got a glass of wine, even the kids, so I thought that was pretty cool. I don't remember actually having to dress up, but otherwise it was pretty formal. As my wife said here now it is very casual, so that actually too a little adjustment for me, but not a big deal, I still enjoy it very much.
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Santa's Helper View Post
I always set a formal table but since I don't have an actual dining room table I have to use a folding table that I get from the fire hall. So it's pretty slender and I can't fit all of the food on the table. I use smaller dishes to put some of the food on the table and then I have a smaller table with warming stations on it so that all of the other food can stay warm. I use my regular plates and silverware even though I don't have a dish washer. I only do one big meal a year so I like to bring it all out. It's a lot of dishes but, my mom usually tackles that for me since I prepare everything. It works out but, the part that I think takes the longest is my mom likes to put everything into smaller containers for the refrigerator and that takes up a lot of time. I think this year I'm just gonna clean everything out of the fridge before dinner so that it's nearly empty and then just put stuff away in the containers that they are in for dinner. That way it will save time and as they empty I can just wash them instead of creating even more dishes by emptying them after dinner.
I try to do the same with clearing out the fridge for leftovers. I cook most of the meal but my parents usually bring a dish or two as well so it adds to the food that needs storing. We also have extra containers for everyone to take leftovers home.
Ahhh...Leftovers are the best!
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:29 PM
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I used to let people take home leftovers in my containers but, last year one of the things on my Christmas list was...Containers! Nobody would bring them back so now it's a requirement that everyone brings their own containers with them.
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Santa's Helper View Post
I used to let people take home leftovers in my containers but, last year one of the things on my Christmas list was...Containers! Nobody would bring them back so now it's a requirement that everyone brings their own containers with them.
Ahh yes, that happened to me but I solved that by collecting empty butter tubs and other types of containers that they can keep.

I will keep that in mind for some to bring containers if I am low on them one year.
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