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How To Plan For Thanksgiving Dinner (Or Any Holiday Dinner Event!)

by Content Team 07 Oct 2022 0 Comments

Hello! @Crafteinated here with a simple meal planning spread for your Thanksgiving Dinner! While I used this for Thanksgiving, you could use this for any holiday or special dinner!

Planning such a large feast around the holidays can be stressful, so planning can make the whole process more seamless. Meal prepping can take the anxiety out of such a big production.


Supplies used: thanksgiving planning supplies

All the supplies you will need!

Archer & Olive Notebook (I used an A5 size)



Other Pens


Acrylic block

Stamp Pad

You can use code Crafteinated10 for 10% off most Archer & Olive products!


Cover Page  

When starting a new collection or spread, my favorite thing is to do a cover page.  The cover page is optional and not functional for meal planning, but I always find it fun and a way to get into the mindset of what will come next.

thanksgiving cover page

For my cover, I just wrote “Thanksgiving” in script writing with a brush pen and “Meal Planning” in a tall, skinny print.


Menu Planner 

Menu Planner

To complete the menu planner, I listed out all of the appetizers, main dishes, side dishes, and desserts I would like to serve at my Thanksgiving meal.  You can utilize the printable to help start brainstorming for this.

The dishes I wrote in my spread were:

Meat/Cheese/Veggie/Fruit Tray

Cheese Ball

Mashed Potatoes

Sweet Potato Casserole




Corn Casserole

Green Bean Casserole 


Pumpkin Pie

Your list could look very different from mine! 


Shopping List

Shopping List

I then made a page for the shopping list.  I did not yet fill this out because (as we will see in the next section) I have not yet picked out my recipes for our Thanksgiving Dinner.

However, since the shopping list is such an essential aspect of meal planning, I decided to add it to fill it out later. 


Time Table

timetable spread

The last spread I made for this is a timetable spread.  This is broken up into 3-4 weeks, 1 week, 2-3 days, a day before, and the day of.  

By planning, I will stay on track and reduce anxiety as our Thanksgiving Dinner approaches.  The timetable I made is as follows:

3-4 Weeks

  • Find recipes
  • Create shopping list
  • Buy turkey

1 Week

  • Look at turkey weight and plan thaw time
  • Go grocery shopping
  • Finalize headcount

2-3 Days

  • Leave out bread for stuffing
  • Make desserts

Day Before

  • Make appetizers
  • Prep food (cut, wash, etc.)

Day of

  • Make your yummy food
  • ENJOY!!

Depending on what works best for you, this may not be the timetable you need to use.  



To decorate my pages, I used my stamps and fall-colored acylographs to make everything look festive.  

decorating with stamps

decorating with stamps

I also used my caliograph and other brush pens to denote spacing as needed.

decorating with calliographs

decorating with calliographs

Final Product

Once done, I had 4 fun pages to help me prep for this upcoming Thanksgiving.

thanksgiving prep cover

thanksgiving prep spread 

thanksgiving prep ideas



The printable is available for you to print to start planning your Thanksgiving Dinner or any special dinner you have detailed.  

Download and print the template here:

thanksgiving meal planner



Please check out the video below if you want to see me create this spread:

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! If you recreate this tutorial or use the printable, please share your creation using the #archerandolivecommunity hashtag! I'd love to see what you create!

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