This is advice for legit Friendgivings only. A 4 course meal and shit. So, from experience, here are some helpful tips for being the hostess with the mostess at your own Friendsgiving extravaganza.
Heads up: you can delegate as many tasks as you want. I can’t help with that part because I took on the main course, decor, seating, and cocktail batch by myself, but that’s because I knew I could count on me being there and everything for sure being handled. I call myself, “type lowercase A”.
1. Make your list. And hey guys, this is invite only.
This is not to be a jerk, this is for many solid reasons.
► Because the list is already decided, you can let people know on the invite how many people to plan for and therefore, how much food to bring. Boom, ORGANIZED. Anyone can be more than welcome to join afterward to munch on yummy leftovers, drink the rest of the booze, and party.
► If everyone invites someone, things escalate really quickly. So and so extra invite didn’t know or forgot to bring a dish, you miss out on a delicious appetizer cause it’s a full on party now, and that just can’t fly. Food is SERIOUS BUSINESS. Sure, you could pick a guesstimated number of people coming and tell people to prepare for that. After all, if 4 people are bringing appetizers then everyone probably will get food, they just might not get a taste of each dish brought. But nuh uh, not in my world.
► Having a limited number of people keeps cost of food down for everyone, especially whoever is taking care of the main dish and drinks.
► As the host you’re probably getting place settings, seating, decor, etc. together, or you’re handing out the task. Either way, it’s stressful to not know how many people to prepare for. “Hey Katie, would you be okay with bringing the seating to the party?” “Sure, how many people are coming?” “……I have no idea.” “Whaaa?”
So, nicely let everyone know the dinner is by invite only.
2. Get your invitations out at least 3 weeks ahead of time.
This is a crazy busy time of year, so you’ll want to give people a nice sized heads up. Also, tell people to contact you with regrets only. This will keep you from having to call people to see if they’re coming or not.
3. If you are making the main dish, don’t make a turkey, and use a crock pot.
Yes it’s Thanksgiving season, but turkeys are a pain and can be stressful. You gotta wake up all early, stuff that mofo, pick a cooking method that keeps it juicy, etc. etc. Instead, pick an awesome crock pot recipe and get it prepped the night before. It keeps your day clear and ready to get other things prepared. Plus, anything slow cooked is probably going to be delicious.
4. Assign a food group to everyone (as shown above).
Don’t wait for everyone to tell you what they want to bring. This makes sure all your categories are covered and it’s a lot less stressful for you. You don’t want a main course and 30 types of artichoke dip. Orr maybe ya do, but not everyone will too.
Also, instead of trying to coordinate which types of dishes are being brought and making sure no doubles are being made, basically just fuck all that. Give people the general idea and let it ride. If you get doubles then it’s just double the yum! But, the idea is to have a smorgasbord of food options, so delegating the groups is helpful.
You can separate them into:
Drink (beer, wine, or batches of cocktails)
If someone can’t come, just ask someone else if they can pick up the type of dish they were supposed to bring. Or, just Pinterest something SUPER easy to make and that’s a problem solved my friend.
Table Settings and Decor
5. Use (Eco-Friendly) Disposable Tableware
I made the place settings using my Cricut and filled it with gold disposable flatware and a napkin. So the key here is: use disposable. Unless you have enough place settings for however many people are invited.
Party City has a pretty good selection of recycled party ware in colors perfect for a fall Friendsgiving.
There is also a site called Eco Party Time that has an amazing selection of not only recycled tableware but 100% recycled and super cute decor like gold foil tassels, cute colored tissue paper confetti, and honeycomb tissue balls.
I also made this “Friendsgiving” wall hanging using my Cricut and a big bow for the center of the table.
To add some mood setting candles in the mix I made mini foam pumpkin candle holders too. They are awesome space fillers and the candles really do add another sexy little level to your table.
Mega Easy Pumpkin Candle DIY
Bag of foam pumpkins
Spray paint (or not if you want to keep them orange)
Tea light candles (LED tea lights would also work great)
Spray paint your pumpkins
Tear out the stem of the pumpkin, grab a tea light, and trace a circle around it
Cut the circle carefully with an X-acto knife, pull out the foam, and place your tea light inside. All done! Of course be sure to keep an eye on it, and if you’re using real tea lights, make sure to get the kind made of aluminum.
Good luck with hosting your first Friendsgiving! I know you’re gonna crush it. And please share if you know anyone venturing into hosting their own.