5 Things I'd Rather Be Doing Than Cleaning the Thanksgiving Mess

woman lying on the sofa

What do you look forward to most about Thanksgiving? Is it the food? (Mmmm . . .  stuffing.) The family togetherness? (Let’s pretend no one ever fights over the remote.) Maybe it’s the prospect of lounging on the couch as you drift off into a pleasant, post-feast, carb-induced coma?

One thing I know for sure is that no one looks forward to the colossal chore of cleaning up after dinner. Even a modest Thanksgiving spread somehow generates a mountain of dishes, and we all know from experience that the only way to get to the other side is to pull on your rubber gloves and get scrubbing.


And yet, a girl can dream, can’t she? (After all, maybe this will be the year someone else does the dishes!) Here are five things I’d rather be doing than scouring pans, sweeping crumbs, and trying to figure out how to get yam juice out of heirloom linen.

1. Go shopping. They say the early bird gets the worm, and that’s as true as ever when it comes to online holiday shopping. No, no, you just relax and take care of the kitchen while I slave away over these hot sales. 

2. Run away. So, I’ve just eaten my weight in mashed potatoes and my blood-gravy level is well past the legal limit. Please excuse me while I get a jump on my summer beach body and take a few laps around the neighborhood to burn off that third helping of pumpkin bread. 

3. Plan ahead. Waaaay ahead. And speaking of getting a jump on 2016, when is too early to start planning the meal for next year’s menu? I say there’s no better time than while this year’s successes and failures are still fresh in my mind (and stuck between my teeth).

4. Listen to my body. Science says turkey contains an amino acid that makes us feel sleepy, and who am I to argue with science? Since fighting the tryptophan won’t do any good, we might as well just go with the flow and settle down for a nice afternoon nap. This year, let the vegetarians clean up.

5. Slip into something more comfortable. You might not think of Thanksgiving as an event that requires a midstream costume change, but hear me out. Those old maternity pants in the back of your closet are just the thing to take you from day to night, especially if you want a slice of allllll the pies. Pull on your full-panel trousers, call them “buffet pants,” and you’re good to go. You’re welcome.

What would you rather be doing while the Thanksgiving cleaning fairy takes care of the dishes?


Leah Maxwell is a book editor, freelance writer, cereal addict, wife, and mom to two young boys. She has been blogging at A Girl and a Boy since 2003.

Image ©iStock.com/Yuri_Arcurs

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