Who says you can only invite your family members to Thanksgiving dinner? The holiday season provides you with the perfect excuse to arrange a get-together with your closest friends, too — for Friendsgiving! But maybe this is your first Friendsgiving dinner, and you’re not entirely sure how to prepare.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of five tips and tricks that’ll help you give thanks and enjoy your Thanksgiving festivities this holiday season — with your friends seated right by your side!
Meeting up with your friends on a whim isn’t uncommon. In fact, you may be the type to schedule some last-minute plans on a daily basis. But, when it comes to your Friendsgiving event, you’ll want to ensure that everybody’s on board with your intended plans well in advance.
When you establish a plan and send out invitations early, you’ll know just how many people you can expect for your dinner. You don’t want to prepare four turkeys for only a handful of guests, and you don’t want to end up dividing a small pumpkin pie into 30 bite-size pieces, either.
Planning ahead gives you sufficient time to know who’s on board with your plans so that you can prepare for your upcoming event without any added stress.
Spruce Up Your Décor
All of your friends will be spending the afternoon at your house — so it’s important to give them some Instagram-worthy shots. That means you should roll up your sleeves, squeeze your mess into the closet, and whip out your best Thanksgiving décor.
Arrange gourds and floral pieces in the center of your table to add a festive spin to your dining room area. Prepare a simple message board that’ll allow your friends to write down what they’re most thankful for on a scrap of paper they can pin to a decorative board.
Not only will this simple piece of décor keep your guests busy when they first walk through the door, but it’ll give them a moment to reflect on what makes them feel grateful, too.
Plan Your Dishes (and Split the Tasks)
What would a Thanksgiving gathering be without a heaping of different kinds of food? Fortunately, Friendsgiving is the perfect excuse for a potluck that’ll not only alleviate some of your cooking-related stress, but that will give you the opportunity to indulge in your friends’ signature dishes, too.
Have people volunteer to bring one of many familiar Thanksgiving dishes to the event and be sure to plan according to everyone’s different dietary needs. As the host or hostess, volunteer to prepare the most important meal of the night — the turkey. You’ll save your guests the hassle of hauling a 25-pound bird to your house while having the opportunity to wow your friends with the most delicious turkey they’ve ever indulged in, too.
Bust Out the Wine
You may have a few dinner dishes in mind, but do you have your drink menu prepared too?
Give your guests something to warm up to when they arrive at your house by preparing a few delicious cocktails or creamy holiday eggnog drinks. Remember to prepare some non-alcoholic drinks to satisfy any younger guests or those who like their drinks alcohol-free.
Go Easy on Yourself
Preparing a Thanksgiving event can be stressful — regardless of who your guests will be for dinner. But, when you go out of your way to arrange platters of food and fun events for your friends, you may feel an added sense of pressure to live up to your friends expectations.
Just remember, your guests are likely to be thankful for your efforts regardless of how the night turns out. Don’t stress out over the small things like hanging up the most eye-catching decorations or preparing a gourmet three-course meal.
The most important part of throwing a Friendsgiving evening is to remember to relax, unwind and make some memories with your closest friends. This is a season dedicated to showing gratitude, so the most important thing that will make your friendsgiving special is showing your friends how happy you are to have them in your life. When you can finish up your night with a toast to your time spent together, you can finish your Friendsgiving off by calling it a success.
Featured image via Friends