Ten Tips For Hosting Thanksgiving

The holidays certainly look a bit different at this stage of life, don’t they? While they still are full
of hustle and bustle, it’s a different kind than it was when our children were little. Now, most of
our children are grown (and often with young children of their own), so keeping up with some of
the traditions you held when your families were younger looks a bit different. Thanksgiving is
the perfect time of year to gather the troops together and celebrate each other with grateful
hearts. Here are some tips for hosting Thanksgiving that will keep family memories growing
year after year.

Being The Hosts With The Most

Let’s be real. As our children grow, their circles grow too. And, that sometimes means that we’re
not the first place they think to be anymore when holiday gatherings come up on the calendar. If
you’re lucky enough to be hosting Thanksgiving this year, know that you can do so in a way that
is relaxing and enjoying for all. Yes, we all enjoy a delicious meal, but more, we cherish the
memories we make. Here are ten tips for hosting Thanksgiving that are sure to keep you
sane…and them coming back for more!

Say Goodbye To Perfection

It’s okay if it’s not the perfect meal/decoration/conversation this Thanksgiving. Expecting
perfection is a lot of pressure to put on yourself and your guests. Go into hosting Thanksgiving
for your enjoyment, not meeting everyone else’s need for a picture-perfect day, and you’re all
going to enjoy it more.

Plan For The Unexpected

Dropping the expectation of perfection is a great way to then plan for the unexpected. Itb’s not
setting yourself up for failure; it’s just making sure there are options if something should come
up. Extra people? No worries; you have a smaller turkey/chicken/duck you can also cook, and
there’s always a way to make room. Food doesn’t turn out the way you thought it might. Plan for
yummy deserts or some fun snacks later in the day to make sure you’re not worried your guests
won’t get enough to eat. Most importantly, expect that things may go unexpectedly and be ready
to laugh your way through it. Laughter truly is the best medicine.

Lighten The Load

When people ask what they can bring/do, answer them truthfully in a way that allows them to
help and help you. Take people at their word when they make their desires to help known and
enjoy the blessing that comes with their help. It’s about being thankful for each other, and there’s
no better way than to allow your family and friends to come together in a holiday purpose.

Remember Kids Will Be Kids

It might have been a while since you had little kids in the house, and now you may be hosting
your children and their children. Consider having some fun activities for the littles to do so that
you can include everyone in the holiday celebration. Just make sure you tell them you want to
keep some of those arts and crafts as they become priceless holiday heirlooms, you’ll want to
bring out year after year!

Plan Ahead

If you want to make Thanksgiving look effortless, plan it out in stages and phases of execution.
Consider your menu, ensure there are no food restrictions from your guests and then stick with it.
Buy groceries in advance so you miss the crazy grocery crowds. Pull out your
china/dinnerware/stemware/tableware a week or two ahead out so you have plenty of time to
steam out wrinkles, rinse the dust-off glasses and prepare your table/decorations at your leisure.

Take Advantage of Work Already Done

There’s a reason big box stores like Costco are so popular—they make your life immeasurably
easier. Yes, you can pore over recipes and make just about anything in the world, and if that’s
your joy, then do it. Otherwise, though, take full advantage of premade appetizers, sides and
other items that may make Thanksgiving a little less labor intensive. Your family and friends
would prefer your presence in conversation over homemade dinner rolls.

Create An After-Meal Agenda

Whether it’s a corny little play the kids do, or a board game tournament the whole group can get
into, don’t put so much focus on the meal that you miss out on the fun memory-making of just
being together. That’s what your kids and grandkids will be talking about in years to come.

Be Sure To Eat A Good Breakfast Yourself

You’re going to be busy, and you want to make sure you have the fuel you need to execute the
day, make sure you eat well in the morning. Fuel with plenty of protein and protein-snacks
throughout the day, and hydrate. Hydrate, hydrate, HYDRATE.

Buy Disposable Cameras And Leave Them Around

Yes, they still make them, and yes, everyone still loves using them as much as they ever have. In
the day and age of instant gratification with our phones and tablets, we tend to take a lot of
pictures we never do anything with. Leave these around and encourage your guests to take a
couple here and there through the evening. Then, when they’re developed, you’ll have a fun little
recap of the day, and you can share with your guests as well.

Allow New Traditions To Be Made

As we move into the next stages of life, it’s inevitable that our kids will begin taking over the
things we have been responsible for in the past. Embrace this change as a gift to them and to
yourself. There’s something so satisfying about watching our sons and daughters grow into
themselves, and before the big day, tell them that you’d like for them to consider things they’d
like to make traditions so you can incorporate and allow the passing of the torch to begin. They’ll
feel even more encouraged by your faith in their ability to carry on the family legacy, and you’ll
see the fruits of all those years of raising them come forth. It’s a beautiful thing!

Ten Tips For Hosting Thanksgiving
Karen Rae

Karen Rae

Owner, Fave Lifestyles


Karen Rae

I was becoming an empty nester, a woman of a more interesting age and in transition. Sound familiar? I was at that place where we question our purpose, value, and worth and what in the world are we going to do with the rest of our lives.

I noticed women have a huge hunger to belong to a community of women where they can feel safe, share openly from their heart and have other women to do life with! This is why I created my Fave Lifestyles.

Fave is for the woman who wants to call Fave her community of women who support, uplift, and make her feel better about herself. I want to create a place where we help her answer life's questions and just do life together!

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