Hosting Thanksgiving for the first time in your new home?
Oh Thanksgiving — a day to catch up with friends and family, consume more turkey than your diet allows and watch, or play, some all American football! Almost everyone looks forward to the relaxation that Thanksgiving Day offers, unless of course you are the one hosting.
If you have been assigned this glorious duty for the first time you may be wondering where to start. And to top it off little do your guests know — you leaped all the hurdles of shopping for a home, getting a loan and closing on your purchase just in time for one of your favorite holidays.
If the nightmares have already begun about how your dinner may turn out, take a deep breath and read our tips to make sure your Thanksgiving dinner happens without a hitch in your brand new home!
Decide how you are setting up your home beforehand
By planning the setup for the event, you will be more confident and relaxed the day of. Plus it may help you identify anything you are missing for the dinner, leaving you plenty of time grab what’s needed.
While planning, consider these ‘day of’ stress-relieving ideas:
- Think about the placement of appetizers. If you don’t want to dodge your loved ones in the kitchen while finishing up dinner, make sure to strategically place the appetizers in a room that will keep them out of the way and won’t tempt them to wander.
- Let kids be kids. It might make sense to set up a kid’s table or even a kid’s room for that matter. You won’t have to worry about scolding them all afternoon and they will feel special since they have a designated place – win, win!
- Do you plan to have everyone sit down at one table, or will it be a ‘help yourself and sit where it’s comfy’ style dinner? You are hosting the dinner so make sure you choose what is most comfortable for you and your home.
Don’t be vague when asked what others can bring
Unless you really enjoy staying up all night cooking for a large number of people by yourself, don’t turn down the offer for others to help with food. Decide which dishes you will be preparing and then divvy out the remaining among those attending. Chances are it will make others feel good having contributed to the feast. Plus, you really don’t want to end up with seven pumpkin pies because no one knew what to bring.
Prep, Prep, Prep…
And not just food! Although food prep can save you a significant amount of time on the day of, think about anything else you can knock out the day before such as cleaning, decorating, polishing dinnerware, preparing drinks, picking out games to play and even choosing a festive music list. If you are having a sit down dinner, go ahead and get the table set up the night before as well.
When it comes to setting a time for dinner, be sneaky
If you tell friends and family the real time you plan to start dinner that is exactly when they will arrive (and some much later). Announce that the event starts at least an hour before you would like to begin eating. This will ensure that everyone has trickled in and you aren’t waiting on Uncle Bob to cut the turkey.
Make sure to leave some time for you
Eat a decent breakfast (skip lunch if you want) to give yourself enough energy to get through the day and to ensure you don’t gorge yourself when dinnertime finally rolls around. Also, make sure to allow enough time to shower and get ready prior to guests arriving. Make sure to schedule it early into your day so that you don’t end up pushing a shower off until the last minute. After all the smell of turkey is delicious, just not in your hair.
Above all, remember to relax
Yes, you are hosting Thanksgiving dinner, but remember that those attending are loved ones. No one is going to care if you buy the cranberry sauce from the store or if dinner runs a little late. When all is said and done, Thanksgiving Day is meant for enjoying those you love and remembering to be thankful for all your blessings, including your shiny, new home.
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