What’s better than Thanksgiving dinner? How about two Thanksgiving dinners!! Family gatherings are important and traditional, but a growing trend is hosting a Friendsgiving, a special Thanksgiving-style dinner with your favorite friends. Hold it before Thanksgiving to create a trial run for the big day, or after to make the most of leftovers or serve something completely different. Here are some things to consider before hosting your Friendsgiving:
Friendsgiving is the perfect time to hold a potluck, making it easier than Thanksgiving because no one person will be in charge of the entire meal. Assign specific dishes or a category, such as veggies or dessert. Or be bold and enjoy whatever dishes show up in hand.
Set a theme
Another dinner-planning idea is to choose a theme and have guests bring something that fits. For example, set a theme of Italian, Chinese farm-to-table or even deep-fried. This could be a nice break from your Thanksgiving leftovers.
Think about drinks
If you are serving alcohol, plan how you’ll stock your bar. You can make it easy and serve just wine or beer. Or create a special cocktail for the day, such as a special martini or mixed drinks. Or set out what guests will need for the most common drinks.
Make sure to accommodate special diets
Check in with friends and see if anyone has food allergies or intolerances, or follows a special diet, such as vegan or Paleo. Then make sure you have enough on your menu to fill them up.
Decide if you want a special décor
Thanksgiving dinner usually includes a special holiday tablescape with a centerpiece, place settings, napkins and place cards. Friendsgiving, however, can be as festive or casual as you wish.
Do you hold Friendsgiving? Share you favorite tips in the comments below!
Flowers are a nice touch to the Thanksgiving, but they don’t last forever. Instead, why not invest in a piece you can use from year to year, creating a traditional look that will become a family favorite. Here are three centerpiece options – and they all ship for free.
A potted pumpkin and gourd topiary with colorful maple leaves adds height to your table, and would look beautiful flanked by candles or all by itself.
This beautiful rustic lantern is filled with fall foliage and the LED lights will make it shine. Use one on a small table or three to create a show-stopping display.
A wreath may be a great accent on your door, but it also makes a great statement on your dining table. Place a pillar candle in the center, for an easy way to dress up the table.
The turkey is definitely the star of the Thanksgiving table, but Tom deserves the proper backdrop. In addition to breaking out your best dinnerware and crystal, create a holiday memory by carefully choosing the rest of the table setting.
Start with a tablecloth. Protect your table by using a tablecloth over a table pad. From crisp white to a rich autumn tone, you will add some color to the meal with the right cloth.
Photo credit: BlueCricketDesign.net
Here’s a great craft project you can do to create a personalized tablecloth. Simply purchase a drop cloth and decorate it with words that represent the things you’re thankful for.
Or don’t. Rules are made to be broken, so feel free to skip the tablecloth and let your table go au natural. Use beautiful placemats or table runners to protect the wood.
Photo credit: The Stir
Mix and match plates, silverware and glassware. Don’t worry about not having enough table settings; purposefully mix and match what you have and no one will ever know. You can even go ultra casual chic by using Mason jars as water glasses.
Let Mother Nature provide decorations. Fall is the time of year when everything outside is in its most colorful glory. Bring in gorgeous leaves and scatter them down the center of the table. You can also use a metallic marker and write names or reasons you’re thankful on the leaves to make them even more special. Place small gourds down the center of the table, and put cut flowers in small pots or thin vases. Add candles and you’ve created a gorgeous fall scene.
Photo credit: Bloom Designs Online
Make it personal. Finally, make guests feel welcome by creating personalized place cards. If you’re hosting friends who aren’t well acquainted, place a little bit of information about each guest on the place card as a way for everyone to get to know each other. You could also include a reason why you’re thankful they are your friend or family member.