November has arrived, and while many people debate the best time to start listening to holiday music, no one can deny that Thanksgiving nearly here. Nationwide Insurance says that 96 percent of families in America gather yearly to celebrate Thanksgiving and 28 percent of Americans have more than 12 people at their table.
This is a great time to showcase your beautiful home — especially if it’s new and not all of the family has seen it yet. You’ll want to put your best foot forward and make this a Thanksgiving to remember!
Decorate Your Front Door/Porch
The first part of your house that your guests see is the front entry. Why not start making an impression on them at that moment? Get a gorgeous a fall wreath for your door and place some pumpkins on your front porch. Have your fall leaves raked into piles and secured under nets for some festive fall color. You could even place small, tasteful holiday lights — white or amber around railings and pillars.
Provide a Simple, Out of the Way Breakfast
If your guests arrive on Wednesday or early Thanksgiving morning, they will appreciate a small breakfast, especially if your big meal is later in the day. Serve your guests a small but filling breakfast like bagels, croissants, and other pastries. Choose elegant fall fruits like persimmons, pomegranates, and quinces. To drink, brew coffee flavored with cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, along with hot tea or cocoa.
Provide Drinks and Appetizers
Offer drinks for all ages available and small appetizers for your guests to munch on throughout the day. That way, if people get hungry before the meal starts, they can graze but save room for the main course. This is important to keep in mind if there are young children present who may ask for snacks every so often. Again, choose light and fall-themed options. Try roasted pumpkin seeds, squash dip, or cranberry brie tartlets.
Share Favorite Thanksgiving Memories
Going around the table telling everyone what you’re thankful for has become quite the holiday cliché. Be mindful that some guests may feel uncomfortable speaking in front of large groups. Then, there might just be that one relative who tends to go off on a tangent after a few pre-dinner drinks. You know the one. Instead, ask people ahead of time to write down their favorite family memory or a “thank you” they want to extend to a relative. Then one designated speaker can read them. If your family is more the casual, jocular type, ask them to come up with a Thanksgiving-themed “dad joke” to share instead. If your family prays, a quick gratitude prayer may be all you need.
Create a Unique Centerpiece
Instead of heading to the florist, create your own centerpiece out of fall flowers from your garden. If you grow vegetables, those can work beautifully, too. If your whole family enjoys gardening, invite everyone to bring something to contribute.
Design Place Cards for Dinner
Depending on the number of people at your Thanksgiving dinner, you may need multiple tables in order to accommodate everyone. An easy way to avoid the awkward “who is sitting next to whom” that plagues many Thanksgiving dinners is to create place cards and arrange them before the meal starts. If there’s some family drama or tension, you can seat people farther apart to minimize theatrics during the meal. Hand make the cards in advance or invite the kids in the family to make them as a pre-dinner activity.
Take a Family Photo
Before dinner, gather everyone in front of the hearth or other fitting location in your home, set the timer, and create a memory. In future years, display your photos for everyone to enjoy.
As Thanksgiving approaches, it’s never too late to make your home look festive. As for the actual event, don’t be afraid to ask for help from some of your guests and be sure to take the time to enjoy the company and the holiday.