To kick off the whole holiday season, Thanksgiving is a wonderful way to get loved ones together before it starts to snow and the winter festivities begin. But getting everything ready can be difficult and stressful when hosting Thanksgiving. Hosting Thanksgiving means cleaning, cooking, planning, and so much more just for a one meal event.
But you should not be stressed out for hosting Thanksgiving and feeling like you are going to pull out your hair; you should be able to enjoy it with your family and friends. Now, before you start getting everything ready for Thanksgiving, you need to keep reading to discover ten ways to make Thanksgiving less stressful.
9 Keep Your Guest List Small
At times it feels like you want to see everyone around the holidays. Though there is nothing wrong with wanting to see your loved ones, you should not feel pressured to invite everyone you have ever met to your Thanksgiving dinner.
It can be tough not inviting your friends, neighbors, coworkers and extended family, but if you can picture that day without them, then you do not need to feel pressure to invite them over. Go through and see who you and your partner truly want to invite for dinner and keep your guest list small.
8 Make It A Potluck
If you are someone who doesn't love cooking, then Thanksgiving can feel like a day full of stress. A potluck Thanksgiving can be a wonderful idea to help the hosting family and let everyone make their favorite dish. There has to be friends and family members that you know that have a signature dish they love to make, and if so, ask them to bring it for Thanksgiving dinner.
Once everyone is assigned a dish they are going to bring then all there is going to be left is the turkey for you and your partner to put together. So, if spending the day in the kitchen is not for you, then talk to your guest about making it a potluck meal instead
Any small thing you can do before the big day is going to make your hosting a lot easier. This can even be set up the table the night before. Get the chairs and table extender out of the counter so you can dust them and cross that off your to-do list.
Also, feel free to start putting out a stack of dishes and silverware that you and your guests are going to use. Though it might feel like you are not doing much, you will be happy after spending the whole day cooking to see that the table is set. Plus, you do not need to worry about yet another item on your checklist.
7 Freeze Your Desserts
A great trick that you should use for your Thanksgiving this year is to make and freeze your desserts before the big day. You can freeze pies, cheesecakes, and even cookies. For the cheesecake and cookies, all you would have to do is take them out of the freezer the night before Thanksgiving day. They can then defrost and be ready in time for dinner.
For the pies, not only can you defrost them, you can also put them in the oven to get them heated up and make it feel like it is a freshly baked pie instead of a frozen pie.
6 Buy The Side Dishes
There are so many dishes to make when it comes to Thanksgiving. Of course, there is the centerpiece of the turkey, but there are also appetizers, desserts, and side dishes. You should not feel pressured to make all of those dishes.
There are many great grocery stores where you can order a side dish like green bean casserole or mashed potatoes, that they can make at their supermarket and allow you to pick up the day before Thanksgiving. And don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone that you picked up those side dishes.
5 Include Your Partner & Kids
There is an old saying that many hands make light work, so ask your partner and kids to help out! Your partner can help you out in the kitchen, and even if they are not the best cook, they can prep veggies to add to dishes. Also, they can help keep things from not overflowing on the stove.
Kids can help clean up the house by dusting, vacuuming, and polishing furniture. This will allow you to get multiple things done at once without you having to do it all yourself. So, recruit your family to help out on Thanksgiving!
4 Keep The Meal Simple
If you are the type of person who loves planning and making extravagant meals then you might want to take a step back and look at everything you need to make. It can feel like you want to try to make some new and exciting recipes that you found online or in a magazine, you might want to try it out before the big day.
Cooking a new recipe can go wrong when you are still figuring things out. Keep the dishes you make simple so you don’t have to worry about multiple, twenty-step dishes overwhelming you.
3 Remember It’s About Spending Time With Loved Ones
At times when you are feeling stressed about hosting a holiday meal, it can be easy to forget what the holidays are really about. Thanksgiving is about spending time with your loved ones and the people that support you and all that you have overcome in the year.
Spending time talking to one another and playing games are perfect ways for you to spend some quality time with your loved ones. So, make time to spend with your kids and family, and make memories that you can cherish for years to come.
2 Buy A Premade Turkey
Buying a premade turkey will save you from needing to season and cook it from scratch. By that, you don’t have to worry about all of the grunt work. Head to your local grocery store to see if they have premade turkeys that you can pick up and heat on Thanksgiving.
1 Don’t Volunteer To Host It
One of the best things you can do for yourself if you are feeling overwhelmed about hosting Thanksgiving is simply not hosting it. This can be difficult for you to decide, but you need to focus on your mental health first over any meal.
Even if you hosted it for the last five years, people will understand. Someone else in your family will surely step up and host the event. Just remember what you felt like when hosting and see if you can give the new host a helping hand.