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    Our Journal

    Holidays

December 15, 2015

10 Tips for Holiday Family Travel

Family Holiday Travel

By Debbie Roberts

When you’re from a cold midwestern state, the sound of the waves crashing, the smell of saltwater in the air, and the warm feeling of sun shining on your back sounds like the best way to spend a vacation in winter. Although sometimes nostalgic for a white Christmas, spending the holidays on the beach in Florida sounds like a dream come true. Until you think about how you’ll get there. Not just traveling with your entire family, but traveling during the holidays with your entire family.

I’m no newcomer to holiday travel. M Read More

November 23, 2015

Who’s Bringing What to Thanksgiving Dinner? Coordinating the Family Meal Plan

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Written by: Danielle Dannenberg

Coordinating the Thanksgiving dinner menu for a big family requires a level of organization comparable to planning school bus routes or air traffic control patterns. I’ll admit, I’m a bit of a control freak when it comes to hosting holidays at our house, but it’s only because I want everyone to be calm, cool, and collected the day of the event. Imagine the chaos that would ensure if we ended up with five turkeys and no mashed potatoes on Thanksgiving!

For potluck-style holidays where the main attraction is the dinner table, I take extra measures to make sure everyone brings a different dish and we have a balanced meal. This usually manifests in the form of an elaborate flow chart, which evolves into a detailed family email, and potentially annoyance when Aunt Debbie hits “reply all.” Let’s not talk about the year when Uncle Mike didn’t get the memo and we had to suffer without chocolate pecan pie…

This year I’m trying something a little different and I have a good feeling about it. I’m lucky enough to be a part of the Flayk Beta Testing Group, which means I get special access to the app before it’s released to the public.

I’ve started making dish-specific lists for each meal I’m cooking. I listed out each ingredient for my favorite gluten free sweet potato casserole and vegetarian wild mushroom gravy recipes. Hopefully this way I’ll know if I need brown sugar…  before Thursday morning rolls around.

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Plus, I’ve decided to nix the mass email and am going to attempt to coordinate what everyone’s bringing through the app. Using the calendar feature I created an event for each dish and assigned the appropriate person as the event owner. I even set up automatic reminders 1 week and 2 days in advance so I don’t have to do the nagging myself! Flayk will send them a phone notification to remind them about the smoked turkey or the apple pie.

It also gives people backup if, for some reason, they can’t show up with the dish they were assigned. For instance, if Nancy can’t bring the stuffing, she can easily flayk it, everyone will get a notification, and someone’s likely to claim it in a heartbeat because we all know it’s not Thanksgiving without stuffing― much easier than the email chain.

Thanks to Flayk, we’re on track for a stress-free, balanced meal ― complete with mashed potatoes and chocolate pecan pie.