Health Team

How to save money at Thanksgiving

Posted November 12, 2008
Updated November 18, 2008

You'll have more to be thankful for at Thanksgiving if you use a few smart strategies to cut costs:

- 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 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.

- 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.

- 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

- Know how much food to buy for your guests.

Download the Thanksgiving calculator at to make a customized shopping list based on your number of guests. You can even factor in how many leftovers you'd like.

- 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


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