“You’re putting what in your stuffing?”
“Are you sure you want to set the table like that?”
“Oh, that’s much too late to start serving dinner!”
If you’re hosting your first Thanksgiving party and aiming to impress, you’ve probably heard something similar to the above. Hosting seems like voluntarily signing up for way too much work and responsibility, not to mention opening yourself up for criticism and unwelcome advice.
Depending on the size and scope of your Thanksgiving party, you may have no idea where to start.
Not to fear, read on to uncover the ultimate guide for throwing the can’t-miss Thanksgiving celebration of the season–so good, even your mother-in-law will be impressed.
1. Plan, Plan, Plan
You may be tempted to neglect planning for your Thanksgiving soiree. After all, how much work could go into one dinner?
Thanksgiving dinners are most successful when they are well planned! This will ensure that you don’t miss out on any important details.
Most importantly, pre-planning will reduce your stress on the actual day so that you can focus on being the perfect hostess and enjoying the time with your friends and family.
When you begin to plan for your Thanksgiving party, make sure to consider the following factors:
- What is your guest count?
- Who is on your guest list?
- Is anyone traveling from out of town? This might impact your start time.
- Who’s bringing what? If your dinner is pot-luck style, you’ll want to coordinate to prevent repeats.
- Does anyone have dietary restrictions?
2. Decorate to Impress
One detail that can instantly elevate your get-together is festive decor. Pulling together seasonally appropriate decorations will instantly put your guests in the mood for gratitude.
These decorations can be as simple as a cornucopia or as unique as Thanksgiving flags.
At a minimum, make sure to plan out your table settings and table cloths to pull together your space.
3. Shop Like Your Life Depends on It
Shopping for a Thanksgiving dinner may include more than just groceries. While you should ensure that you have all of the ingredients for your meal, there are other aspects that you may forget.
Make sure that you have enough silverware, plates, napkins, serving plates, and serving utensils for your meal.
Shopping in advance of Thanksgiving day means that you’ll get ahead of the outages and leave yourself time to pick up any last-minute forgotten items.
4. Don’t Be Afraid to Delegate
At the end of the day, Thanksgiving is about family and friends. You shouldn’t feel alone or like you have to do it all yourself.
Delegate tasks that are simply adding up on your plate. This is also a great way to make other people feel included.
Saying “Hey mom, I’ve always loved the pumpkin pie that you made for us growing up and know that everyone else will love it too. Would you mind bringing it for dinner?” will always go over well.
Thanksgiving Party On!
The most important part of hosting a Thanksgiving party is to keep a cool head. More often than not, you stress so much that you forget to enjoy yourself.
Thanksgiving is a time of gratitude, family, and togetherness. So, cross off your to-do list early and your family will thank you!
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