15 Thanksgiving Fails to Avoid

Mistakes like these can ruin your holiday — learn how to avoid them so you don’t fall into a holiday rut
Damaged Turkey

iStock/Thinkstock

A Late Start

A Late Start

iStock/Thinkstock

Waking up is the first battle to beginning your Thanksgiving Day. If you don’t wake up early, you’ll be having a very late dinner. Make sure you set a few alarms the night before to ensure an early wakeup. And if you don’t wake up? We have some last-minute ideas to help save your day!

Damaged Turkey

Damaged Turkey

iStock/Thinkstock

When cooking a bird of epic proportions, there are so many things that can go wrong. Not only could you forget to defrost the thing, but it could easily get burnt or even dried out if not tended to properly. Simple things like taking the bird out of the oven to baste and keeping the oven door shut can help improve your turkey’s taste.

Dry Stuffing

Dry Stuffing

iStock/Thinkstock

No matter what type of stuffing you are serving, this tasty side is not a set-it-and-forget-it type of dish. If left unattended, this side could turn into a total calamity. You can easily fix your stuffing situation by stirring in warmed broth or butter and popping it back into the oven under a watchful eye. 

Short Supply

Short Supply

iStock/Thinkstock

Food isn’t the only thing you can run out of on Thanksgiving! You could run short of cutlery, plates, and wine glasses, too, if you aren’t prepared. Heck, you could even run out of toilet paper! Try loading up slowly with a backup set of cheaper serving ware and be sure to keep an emergency supply of toiletries!

Not Enough Room

Not Enough Room

iStock/Thinkstock

Maybe you got carried away with the guest list this year out of excitement. Suddenly, your living room is packed and your table is cramped. Guests will definitely start to get irritable with a ton of people and a hot oven. Make sure you are armed with folding chairs and tables to accommodate an ambitious list. 

Forget to Turn on the Oven

Forget to Turn on the Oven

iStock/Thinkstock

Really, if you forget to turn on your oven, there is little you can do to cook a huge bird in a few short hours. However, simply set an alarm on your phone for you to check on the turkey after 10 minutes of being in the oven. This way you can catch early on any signs of trouble from your appliances

Red Wine Spills

Red Wine Spills

iStock/Thinkstock

Maybe the dinner is going swimmingly — but the swift flick of a wrist can turn your carpet or tablecloth into a straight-up mess. Don’t fret, though, there are plenty of ways to get the stain out — just be sure you keep your cool and don’t embarrass the already humiliated spiller.

Deep-Fried Turkey Explosion

Deep-Fried Turkey Explosion

iStock/Thinkstock

The disaster with this is not a ruined turkey but a very serious trip to the emergency room. Make sure that if you are going to attempt to do this, you are well-versed in proper execution.

Family Pet Destroys Dinner

Max is naturally a part of the family, but that doesn’t mean he should get first dibs on dinner. As much as you love your family pet, it may be best to keep them in a separate area of the house — especially if they have a mischievous nature. 

Cut Yourself Carving

Cut Yourself Carving

iStock/Thinkstock

Do not get blood all over the turkey. It is gross and painful and will make your entire effort an utter waste. Exercise extreme caution and make sure that you that you have a plan before digging into your bird. 

Messy Guests

Messy Guests

iStock/Thinkstock

Forget the spilling — guests can wreak havoc on your household in other ways. Think about dirty shoes and stick fingers running amuck around your living room. Simple things like a welcome wipe mat and bottled sanitizer can make your holiday less stressful and much cleaner!

Inebriated Guests

A crazy uncle is an issue, a crazy drunk uncle is another. Do not be afraid to cut guests off from their liquor supply. After all, you’re the one who will have to clean up the mess they make, be it a literal or figurative one!

Wrong Equipment

Wrong Equipment

iStock/Thinkstock

If you bought all of the necessary fixin’s for dinner, you better check the recipes to make sure you have the right equipment. After all, what are two huge turkeys worth if you can’t get them cooking? Make sure you take measurements and account for all gear before you head into the kitchen.

Traveling Troubles

Traveling Troubles

iStock/Thinkstock

If you have guests arriving from far away, make sure you give them a grace period of arrival time. Planes get delayed, traffic happens, and towing any family across town takes work! Don’t forget to factor this in when scheduling your meal

Unexpected Guests

Unexpected Guests

Cornstock/Thinkstock

Sometimes people, even family, are just plain rude. Lay down the law when it comes to the amount of people guests can bring, if any at all. Should they happen to arrive unexpectedly anyway, you should always account for extra servings just in case — even for guests who simply want seconds of your delicious dinner!