While it seems like a crazy question when still in October, there are a few very real factors to think about such as travel plans, invitations, and venue (who is hosting where this year?) Beyond that though, when it comes down to just the food, when do you begin planning? Truthfully if it were really just up to me, I think a few weeks would suffice. But because we're inevitably trying to accomodate different diets and preferences, and fit in all the dishes that varying folks think absolutely must be there for it to feel like Thanksgiving or Christmas ... that's where the planning comes in. And when it comes down to it, the favorites are so often the good old fashioned standards that take little planning in the first place: mashed potatoes, traditional stuffing, and mom's pumpkin pie.
So for now I'm still walking by those holiday magazines on the coffee table, and I haven't yet booked our tickets. But I know both are looming. I may just put one off for a little while longer.