How to Save Money at Thanksgiving
1. Don't do a thing -- from grocery shopping to gift buying -- without a plan.
Make lists, keep spreadsheets or download the Holiday Control Journal at http://www.flylady.net. She covers everything from getting (and keeping) the house clean, to creating a timetable for sending gifts during December so you won't waste money on last-minute rush jobs.
2. Brine your bird.
You don't need to shell out big bucks for a fancy bird to have a tender turkey. Just buy a regular supermarket turkey (make sure it hasn't been injected with a salt solution) and brine it overnight for a moist and flavorful main dish. Recipes are readily available on the Internet.
3. Put the kids to work on decorations.
Don't waste money at the party store on tissue-paper turkeys and leaves. Keep the kids busy making centerpieces and place cards. Have children make a hand-print turkey and write what they're thankful for in the "feathers." For more ideas, go to http://www.familyfun.go.com
4. Know how much food to buy for your guests.
Download the Thanksgiving calculator at http://www.instructables.com to make a customized shopping list based on your number of guests. You can even factor in how many leftovers you'd like.
5. Get ready for Black Friday, also known as day-after-Thanksgiving-Christmas shopping.
You can get a jump on the deals and a sneak peak at the newspaper ads at http://www.tgiblackfriday.com.