I wanted to share an idea for those of you setting a pretty table. If you're using real autumn leaves, you can gather them a couple of days ahead and use this trick to preserve them (for a week or so) and make them even more beautiful than God's originals.
Throw them away after Thanksgiving; they won't keep until next year.
1If the leaves are dusty, rinse them off and let them dry completely.
2Pour some wax into a shallow dish, like an old tray or baking sheet with a lip all around, and lay the leaves in it-- first the back side, then the front. Just dip them and take them out. They need to be completely coated, but they don't need to soak.
3Lay the leaves on waxed paper or foil to dry. I used to just lay them on my brick hearth (which also got a coat of Johnson's Wax before the Big Day!)
4Once they're completely dry, they will be shiny, and they'll stay pretty for days. You can scatter them on your table for a beautiful autumn look. Or let your creative juices kick into high gear with ways to use them. Throw them away after Thanksgiving; they won't keep until next year.
5To do a whole spray of leaves, for a vase or arrangement, try brushing the wax on both sides with a disposable artist's or sponge brush. If you only wax the top side, they will be shiny and pretty for a few hours, but they won't keep long.