In addition to worrying about preparing a terrific, tasty turkey, Thanksgiving can cause plenty of stress related to entertaining a large group. I don’t know about you, but I’m not hosting big dinner parties every weekend! We turned to Rachel Hollis, the creator of Chic Events and a celebrations.com expert, to gather her top tips for throwing a successful, yet worry-free fete. She should know—her company often organizes events for celebrities, such as Ivanka Trump and Marcia Cross!
- Stock up. “I have an area in my pantry dedicated to last-minute parties. It’s full of fancy mixed nuts, tapenades, olive oils, great chocolates and good wine. All items I can turn to in a pinch and throw on a lovely platter and be ready when guests are at the door.”
- Give as a guest. “The best way to show your appreciation is to offer to help. But since your host is cooking, perhaps you could help with decor and offer to bring a beautiful centerpiece to adorn the table!”
- Don’t forget the favors. “Hosting the meal is enough of a gift. I think the best favor would be a lovely takeaway box so you can get rid of some of your leftovers!”
- Match your party with your personality. “When I did Sara Rue’s wedding this summer, they had a vintage photo booth and beer pong! I love that they embraced who they were—a really fun-loving couple—instead of doing something stuffy and traditional to please others. Keep that idea in mind with your events!”
- Go easy on yourself. “Don’t overwhelm yourself. For instance, don’t use your holiday party as the opportunity to make a miniature souffles for the first time. Go with what you’re good at to keep stress to a minimum—even if what you’re good at is ordering takeout!”
But don’t grab that phone just yet—this super-simple recipe is even achievable for Thanksgiving rookies!
- 1 acorn squash
- 1 shallot
- 3 sprigs rosemary
- olive oil
- balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cut acorn squash in half, scoop out seeds and strings with a spoon and rinse. Slice each half into eight pieces and set aside.
- Remove peel from shallot and rough chop.
- Put squash, shallots and rosemary sprigs on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Mix together until well-coated.
- Bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
For more entertaining tips, visit mychiclife.com.