Hosting Thanksgiving? Tips and Tricks You Need to Know
Ahh Thanksgiving, a holiday for feasting, gathering, giving thanks, and drinking wine. If you're hosting Thanksgiving at your place this year, we understand the stress and overwhelming preparation that comes hand in hand with the month of November. To help keep you sane, we've put together a few tips and tricks to feel less stressed for the big turkey day.
We know, you've probably heard this a million times, but we can't stress the importance of it. Planning ahead will save you so many headaches the day of and the days leading up to the big day. First, plan recipes you want to prepare. We recommend sticking to the basics, especially if this is one of your first times hosting. Then make sure you have all of the serving utensils, napkins, tablecloths, placemats, center pieces, cooking tools, etc. that you will need.
Make dishes that can be stored in the fridge a few days in advance. Most of the sides can be made early and save you time. If you're dreading cooking the turkey and waking up at 4 in the morning the day of, consider making that in advance as well. Many cooks swear that making the turkey one day early does not affect the taste if done right. You carve the turkey and place it in a crock pot with a coil of tinfoil.
Don't forget to designate time to clean the house and make sure it is ready for any overnight guests. This is a great thing to do the week before so it's not another thing to worry about the week of. Pull out the guest towels and linens, get the dining room into shape, and put a candle in the bathroom. On the night before, give yourself a clean slate in the kitchen and empty out all the trash cans, unload the dish washer, pull out all the serving dishes and platters you'll need, and set the table.
Don't be Afraid to Ask for Help
It is okay to feel a little overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done so asking for help is more than okay. The biggest trick to pulling off a successful Thanksgiving is delegating! Family and guests are usually very willing to help out. Even asking a few guests to bring a side dish or dessert can be super helpful.
Don't feel like everything you make has to be homemade. There is no shame in running to the store for desserts, dinner buns, etc. If everything was made from scratch, it would take far too long to get dinner on the table and you don't want to compromise your sanity. Instead, opt for the helpful store bought items and add a little variety to them by throwing in a few extra ingredients.
Stock up on Beverages
If your guests are indulging in wine and cocktails, they won't even notice if dinner is taking a little longer. Overall, having drinks and refreshments makes everything feel more relaxing, light, and special. If your guests have kids, be sure to get some fun, non-alcoholic options as well. They can choose from sparkling cider, hot apple cider, punch, etc. And don't forget to offer coffee and tea with the dessert for later on in the night. You may also want to consider picking up some games for the kids or having a few crafts and activities for them to do while they wait to eat.
Start The Day Early
And by early, we mean early. It always takes more time than you think. We also recommend making a checklist of everything that needs to happen for the day and allotting estimated time slots to each task. And of course, someone always ends up showing up early so plan to have all the essentials done an hour before guests are scheduled to arrive.
Here are a few of our top picks for decorations and table decor for the big day.
Hopefully, these tips have helped you plan your Thanksgiving gathering. Have a wonderful holiday and remember to enjoy!