Thanksgiving is a little more than a week away(!) and if you're playing host, it can be a pricey venture!

Here are 5 tips on saving some green (and your sanity) this Turkey Day.

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  • 1

    Keep it simple.

    While you want everyone to enjoy themselves, if you try to cater to every person's desire, you'll go crazy. Sure, some people might want the whole-berry cranberry sauce while others prefer the jellied variety -- but you shouldn't be expected to have both. Someone's just going to have to learn to live with disappointment.

    Keep your menu simple and keep your costs down!

  • 2

    Go potluck!

    Maybe you have the kind of friends and family that automatically ask, 'What can I bring?' Maybe your friends and family aren't as thoughtful. Consider a potluck Thanksgiving dinner! Does your sister make awesome candied yams? Have an aunt whose pumpkin pie is legendary? Maybe you are an expert with stuffing? Encourage everyone to bring a dish -- but make sure they know you are counting on them to show up with it!

  • 3

    Make a list -- and stick to it!

    So you've planned your menu, you know what you'll need to make...now make your shopping list, and stick with it when you get to the store.

    It can be easy to impulse buy: 'Oh, turkey-shaped butter, how cute for the table!' 'I know I planned on pumpkin pie, but I should really get an apple pie as a backup, just in case...' 'I HAVE two boxes of stuffing at home, but...what if someone wants more?'

    Plan ahead, make your list, and stay the course!

  • 4

    Have a signature cocktail.

    You might think you need to have a bottle or two of wine for every person (red and white), plus hard liquor, liquers, mixers, etc... If you'll use it all in the long run, it might be worth it for you, but if you're trying to save your pennies, make ONE signature drink. (May I recommend my Apple Pie Sangria?)

    It's helpful to make a drink with common ingredients, so people can perhaps make an alternative beverage, but again, you can't be all things to all people.

     

  • 5

    Don't pay for your turkey!

    This one is a little more dependent on where you live and what stores are nearby, but sometimes stores have holiday offers that can get you a free bird. ShopRite seems to be the only store around here that is doing it this year, but it's not too late to get in on the deal.

    How does it work? Use your shopper card and spend $400 between Oct. 19th and Nov. 27th, and you'll get a free frozen turkey (or turkey breast, ham, kosher chicken, Tofurky, or frozen lasagna) or equivalent discount off a fresh turkey.

    Between your regular grocery expenses (and additional Thanksgiving expenses) it's almost TOO easy to spend that much at the grocery store. If you regularly shop at ShopRite, you might have already qualified for it without realizing!