How to Host Thanksgiving For The First Time 🦃

How to Host Your First Thanksgiving Dinner
Now that we got Halloween in the bag and the universe gave us an extra hour of sleep, we can start to focus on Thanksgiving. For a lot of couples, this is the best time to bring the two families together for some good food and laughter before your actual wedding.

My favorite time of the year. You know, where we reflect on all our blessings both small and big. The time of year where family gather at the dinner table and eat to their heart's content. And this year (somehow) you were nominated to host Thanksgiving dinner. No worries, you got this girl! Before you run out and filled your carts with sweet yams, stuffing, cans of cranberry and of course the 25-pound Butterball, let's create a game plan.

How can you host Thanksgiving for the first time and rock it? 
Think of details, big and small.

Start with the basic. If you decide to go with a separate table spread, you need to make sure that your table flows. Now is the best time to Feng Shui your table, so you will know exactly what to go where and make self-serving a breeze.

Thanksgiving Table Setting

This was our Thanksgiving from last year. A dinner with a little over 25 people. Take a good look at the picture. First, we used a red polyester table cover with a floor drop (meaning long enough that the linen drop down down all the way to the floor). Next we set up each serving ware exactly how we wanted it. Taller dishes spread towards the back of the table. Different sizes and shapes make it flow better. Don't be afraid to use a few props, like the tree in the left corner that the kids wrote what they were grateful for that year. Don't forget your serving spoons. Breads and rolls on the right rear upper corner. That will be the final thing added to their plates. 

Leave the guessing work out, and add dish labels. You can find them at Michaels or Hobby Lobby. 

KEY POINT: use different size and height serving ware for your table. 

Thanksgiving table setting

Here are some close-ups of annual feast.

Thanksgiving menu   Thanksgiving menu ideas

Thanksgiving menu   thanksgiving Table menu

Next the guest tables: keep it simple!

We went extra and got these beautiful premium plates for the table, which worked great with the fall-color theme

Thanksgiving Table Set Up

One of the biggest advantages of having a separate table spread is that you leave room at the table for a little decoration. Had we had the turkey in the middle, that candle holder wouldn't have fit  on the table.

KEY POINT: If you want to go extra and not want to deal with washing tons of dishes, make sure to get PREMIUM plates and cups. Yes ladies and gentlemen, if you got for the cheap stuff, you will spend more time cleaning your floors from food that have fallen off of someone's plate. A better alternative is using plain white dishes. Anything on a white dish looks good and Instagram picture ready (#nofilter).

Thanksgiving Tablescape

Do you really need centerpieces? No you don't. But if you insist on having one, keep it low and simple.

Here is a great example from Good Housekeeping. A simple pumpkin centerpiece and all you need is: artificial pumpkin, which you can get at Amazon and some blooms from your local florist or grocery store. Remember this is not a wedding so don't go crazy.

Thanksgiving Centerpiece

Don't forget the sweets. So much to choose from. Key is all in the display.

Thanksgiving Dessert Idea

Dessert Ideas

No one will forget the dessert display. Speaking of dessert, here is a great simple recipe for a sweet treat:

Minnie Roasted Apple & Pear Tarts

Better Homes and Garden Apple Treats

See the full directions, HERE.

Let's take a look at some other important bullet points:

  • Don't be afraid to ask for help
  • Create a Thanksgiving checklist
  • Decide on a timeline
    What time will dinner start? Use that as your guide to be ready on time
  • Make what ever you can ahead of time
    If there's a recipe that you can make the night before, perfect, do it
  • Nothing wrong with faking it
    I'm not a baker, especially when there are plenty of local bakers around me
  • Don't experiment - not the time for it
    No one wants to eat that kale marshmallow side dish
  • Start cooking early
  • Use white dishes and keep the eating utensil simple
  • Work smarter not faster - set your Feng Shui table the night before
  • Let your guest play bartender - set up a drinks bar
  • Prepare every room - especially the bathroom
  • Create a menu
  • Add some music
  • Create a kids table
  • Plan for leftovers 

You're getting the idea, right? Now for some cool FREE printable

Thanksgiving Printable

From: Kiki Comin
Thanksgiving Fall Leaves

From: Pizzazerie
Thanksgiving Free Printable

Thanksgiving Kids Activity Book

Here is a link for a set of 24 leftover containers from Amazon.

Thanksgiving Leftover Containers

And there you have. Everything you need to create and host your first Thanksgiving. Why don't you share this post and help someone else.
Now is the time to subscribe to the blog and never missed on anything, SUBSCRIBE HERE.

I hope this post helped. Like anything else - DON'T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF. Thanksgiving is about appreciation and the fact you decided to host is a great bi thank you in recognizing how bless you are. Follow the bullet points above and you won't be disappointed.

What is your Thanksgiving routine? What tips do you have for a newcomer? Share them in the comment section.

Until next time peeps.

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Hey There! Welcome to The Party. Come on in and Grab some Wine.

Welcome! First thank you for taking the time to stop by my little corner of this world. This is the place to be if you're a bride-to-be, hostess, wedding & event planner or anyone who loves the art of entertaining. You can expect to find great posts from industry professionals, as well as my own designs and all the tools you need to plan your perfect event. You can always reach me via email at Don't forget to subscribe and share this blog around.

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