November 21, 2018
First off, Happy Thanksgiving to all! Can you believe it’s tomorrow?! This is the time of year when all things start feeling cozy and close to home. We’re bundled up, gathering together to celebrate, and abandoning our diet/workout plans to cheat this week. Yes, you can cheat the whole week . . . don’t feel bad, it’s Thanksgiving after all.
For some, this time of year means playing hostess and doing some Atlanta party planning. Whether the rotation falls on your house this year or you volunteered, we’re about to lay down some tricks to help you stay cool, calm, and collected while you bake a 12-pound bird in the oven for hours, amidst other holiday hosting tasks.
Now this is speaking our language. One of the keys to hosting is to plan ahead. This tip applies to a few different areas:
Planning ahead of time will save you stress and kitchen mess on the day of. Whether it’s Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Years Day, if you’re a Holiday Hostess do not be afraid to ask for help or simplify recipes when needed. Be sure to think about your day-of timeline and give yourself wiggle room in case there’s a mishap or grocery-run needed. That way you can regroup before guests arrive.
As we said above, gravitate more towards easy-prep, low-fuss recipes. Since you are having to prepare large quantities of food for a group of people, taking some of the heavy lifting off yourself is okay. Check out some of Ina Garten’s make-ahead Thanksgiving feast recipes. She was so pleasantly surprised at how prepared she was when guests arrived. She was actually able to mingle with them!
Lastly, be mindful about trying out recipes you have never made before. We’re not saying it won’t be delicious, but you may want to save yourself the headache and stick to what you know. If this is your first time hosting, then some of these recipes may be new to you and that’s okay! Try and get advice from your chosen holiday helpers on what ‘new’ dishes to make.
Every year, my mother makes us the guinea pigs for several new dishes and worries during the whole meal if we’re actually enjoying it. Do yourself a favor and maybe leave these brand new ones off your holiday menu to make your Atlanta party planning journey a little easier.
Let’s not forget about setting the holiday mood with your decor and home setting. As we said, these tips are meant to help make things simpler for you on the day of, so don’t panic when you hear the word decor! We just want you to be aware of your surroundings. Bring out the festive centerpiece, table runner, napkins, and Pilgrim salt and pepper shakers. Light the fire place, or if you don’t have one light some holiday candles. Think about the layout of your home and how guests will flow in and out of rooms throughout the day. You may want to deck these rooms out with mood lighting, fresh scents, and coasters . . . lots of coasters. This is just the cherry on top of playing hostess for the holidays. Aside from the food, setting the ambiance is so important.
We wish you all the best as you take on the role of holiday hostess. Remember these Atlanta party planning tips and most importantly, do not overwhelm yourself. This time of year is about making memories and living in the moment. With all this talk of planning sometimes that’s easy to forget. Not everything will be perfect but when is it ever perfect anyway? So, start jotting down your grocery list, call your sous chef, and remember to relax. Happy Thanksgiving!
Photography By: Hannah Forsberg
By: Rachel Hegner