I’m one of the lucky ones. I grew up in a family where every day was a reason to celebrate and be grateful. If you’ve followed me for awhile, you may know that my mom is my biggest inspiration in and out of the kitchen. We woke up to hot breakfasts, special snacks, and over the top celebrations for every holiday big and small. My parents were there for us through it all and strived to make every day feel special. It was the best childhood and one I’m striving to recreate for my four kids every single day.
Like I said, every holiday was special, but Thanksgiving was always (and still is) one of our family’s most special holidays. My mom is a professional caterer and hosts our family with the most over the top, beautiful spread. I share a stories every now and again during our weekly Sunday dinners at her house. If you’ve seen them, you know how it’s all of the tiny details, along with amazing food, that takes her hosted occasions from good to amazing! Today on the blog, I wanted to share some of the tips and tricks I’ve learned from my mom and from planning my own parties and events that can make Thanksgiving feel extra special!
Need other recipe ideas? Try these round-ups of my favorites:
- Thanksgiving Recipes Round-Up
- Fall Recipes
- Sunday Dinner Ideas
- Ultimate List of Sides
- Lunch Ideas for Kids
- Pumpkin Recipes
This may seem silly, especially if you have the same group of family and friends at your home each year, but an invitation is the perfect way to set the tone for any event – even Thanksgiving! I love the idea of sending invitations – printed or digitally to your Thanksgiving meal. You can give instructions on what to bring, what to wear, or simply to remind everyone what time to arrive. Here are a few great options in a free program called Canva! You can personalize your own invitations and have them printed, or save the image to your phone and send it out over text. It’s a small detail that will wow your guests weeks in advance!
Print off a pretty menu:
Have you ever considered printing a menu and displaying it for your guests? There is something so elevated about signage and with programs like Canva – it’s easier than ever to pull off. Am I sounding like a Canva spokesperson yet? I should be – but this is not sponsored haha! I’m just a fan.
Putting all the traditional (and non-traditional) items on a menu can be a fun way to get everyone excited while also adding to the decor. Here’s an example from my daughter’s birthday part! You can get them printed anywhere – but I like Cox Printing if you’re local to Phoenix or even Kinko’s.
Add a name card:
While you’re creating a menu, Canva also has name card templates that you could add to each seat at the table. Guests can move them around if needed, but to have dedicated seat with your name on it is a special, elevated experience that is not a ton of extra work for you as the host. I highly recommend it! If you invite the same people each year, this is something you could collect and hold on to for the following year.
These ones from Amazon are darling and can be hand written!
Set the kids table:
It’s really fun to put some extra work into the kids’ table on Turkey Day! This could include special, printed plates, an added craft, a small gift – or maybe even a coloring page as a place mat! One small detail for the kids table will make the day of even your youngest guests. I think this really helps get your kids invested into the holiday and excited to celebrate because they’ll feel included, too!
Play a game:
Have you ever played a game at Thanksgiving? It can be rare to have a group large enough to play games such as LCR! If you haven’t tried LCR, it’s a really fun dice game that required no skill – just luck! Kids can pick it up and be included very easily. If you decide to play for money, it’s a special moment to see one of the kids win the jack pot! We look forward to this every year and love having it a part of our family tradition!
Don’t forget the Martinelli’s!
What is it about Martinelli’s that makes the holidays so special?! We have lots of bottles on hand to have with our dinner as our special drink. The kids LOVE it and feel so fancy drinking their bubbly cider. It’s the small things, people!
I hope this helps alleviate some of the stress when it comes to making sure holidays feel special! I know as moms we can be hard on ourselves, but if you can adopt one new tradition or small detail to your day, I think you’ll be surprised at what a difference it can make. Happy Thanksgiving!
Did you know I have a monthly meal subscription you can join? I create a new grocery list filled with tons of delicious recipes every month that you can make with the family! If you are the type of family that makes the same meals all the time then this is definitely something you should look into. Let me help you and change up your normal routine. Join today HERE and I promise you will love it!