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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips

Thanksgiving Table Decor Thanksgiving Table Decor As a recent college grad, I am just getting used to serving as a host. At Stanford, no one hosted dinner parties. Though I love entertaining, I am still learning a lot each time I host a brunch or dinner party.

Thanksgiving, in particular, is especially tricky. You want delicious food, a beautiful home and tablescape, plenty of time to get dressed before guests arrive, and a relaxing day with family.

Here are some of my tips and tricks that really helped me as I was planning Friendsgiving! I hope they help make your Thanksgiving Day run smoothly!

Thanksgiving Table Decor
Food:
  • Decide where your priorities lie. I realized early on that I didn't want to spend all day cooking every single dish for Friendsgiving, so I delegated dishes and drinks to my friends. I got to focus on the three recipes I was particularly excited about--the turkey and gravy, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin tart.
  • Make what you can the day before. I made my cranberry sauce and pumpkin tart on Friday evening instead of rushing through them on Saturday.
  • If you are asking guests to bring food, remember that you will need to reheat dishes before serving. While my friends and I were drinking champagne, the mashed potatoes, stuffing, and brussel sprouts were warming up in the oven.
  • Have two bowls for sauces and sides. That way, your guests aren't constantly passing cranberry sauce and gravy.
Easy Thanksgiving Turkey
Tablescape:
  • For an easy and beautiful tablescape, cover your table with a white tablecloth, then use craft paper as a runner. It creates a rustic feel that is perfect for Thanksgiving and other fall fetes. 
  • Add color with napkins and flowers. I was able to find some great burgundy cloth napkins at World Market that brought in a fall feel to my table. Then, I used the burgundy as inspiration for my centerpiece!
  • Know when to go to a professional. Theoretically, I could have made my own centerpiece with flowers from Whole Foods or Trader Joe's. Instead, I went to my new favorite flower shop, spent $20, and got a beautiful bouquet that looks 1000 times better than if I did it myself. Plus, it only took 10 minutes!
  • Set the table in the morning. This will allow you to run the dishwasher again if you need more silverware, plates, glasses, etc.
Thanksgiving Table DecorThanksgiving Table Decor

Hope these tips help you stay organized this Thanksgiving!

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