While the idea of hosting Thanksgiving may initially seem scarier than a scene from Halloween Umpteen (coming sooner or later to a theatre near you), we have four stellar reasons to take charge of Turkey Day. From tasty home cooked Thanksgiving recipes to festive Thanksgiving inspired decorations for the home, we’re confident you’ll end up being thankful you signed on to host this fantabulous holiday.
Reason #1: Your Home, Your Holiday Traditions
Most families have Thanksgiving traditions that span decades or even generations. Guaranteed, there are some you love and some, not so much. Now’s the time to blend the best of Thanksgiving past and Thanksgiving future for a truly enjoyable holiday.
Speed round! Yes or no: Should you have assigned seating? Is a designated kids table wise? Should you accept offers to bring food? Are the NFL football games permitted to be on TV during dinner? (If you say yes to football but no to cable, make sure to set up some type of streaming situation for your guests.) Chances are, you have strong opinions on all of these topics, and then some. When you have Thanksgiving at your house, you decide which traditions stay, which ones go, and which traditions start with you.
Reason #2: Your Home, Your Home Cooked Thanksgiving Recipes
Sure, the benefits of homeownership include financial and emotional well-being. Only slightly less well known is the fact that hosting Thanksgiving at your own house gives you the authority to answer the age-old pumpkin pie questions: with or without nuts? Homemade or store-bought? Traditional or its newfangled, chiffon-infused counterpart?
We’re guessing all this talk of Thanksgiving recipes is making your mouth water. In this season of giving thanks, we’re giving you some traditional and not-so-traditional recipes for your consideration. (Plenty of time to try them all before the big day.)
Reason #3: Your Home, Your Thanksgiving Decorations
To some, hand-painted gourds overflowing from hand-woven wicker cornucopias are just what the Thanksgiving decorations guru ordered. For others, a turkey piñata may speak to your family’s turkey day style. While beauty is definitely in the eye of the beholder, we humbly offer a few suggestions to make your traditions special year after year—‘cause you’ll totally want to host again next year. Really.
- Fresh flowers are nice, but also spendy and temporary. Instead, consider decorations you can use over and over.
- Homemade decorations are often the most treasured of all. (Think about the Christmas decorations you made as a kid. Special, right?) Get crafty with them.
- Set the table as formal or as casual as you like. While a lace tablecloth is elegant, butcher paper that guests can write on is fun (and easy to clean up!). It’s up to you.
- Make sure your table’s centerpiece has a low profile so the convo can happen across the table.
- Just say no to paper plates for the main course. They may be cute and save cleanup time, but they’re rarely heavy duty enough to support the weight of traditional turkey, stuffing, potatoes and so on. However, they’re great for pumpkin pie!
Reason #4: Your Home, Your Schedule
Maybe Aunt Helen likes to eat at noon sharp, but you may prefer something closer to the dinner hour. Guess what? Your home, your schedule. Liberating, isn’t it?
One thing your early bird of an aunt may have on you after her years of hosting is timing. Thanksgiving dinner takes planning, advanced preparation and a generous pinch of realistic time estimates for the tasks at hand. The key is to do as much in advance as possible, and the day of, don’t forget to schedule time to shower and set the table.
Hosting Thanksgiving: You Got This!
One last piece of pie, er, advice: If someone offers to bring a dish, accept, but delegate wisely. Don’t assign the sweet potatoes to someone else if that’s your signature dish.
Now that we’re in the month of Thanksgiving, and you’re pumped about hosting, it’s time to start inviting guests. Good luck and pretty please share your successes and your ideas for next year using #HostingIsPossible on Facebook and Twitter. We wanna see!