Entertaining Guide to Planning a Stress-free Thanksgiving

Ready or not, here come the holidays! And with one of the biggest and most beloved of them coming up, Thanksgiving, the pressure is definitely on. For those who aren’t the crafty type or who find cooking a challenge, we totally sympathize. This post is dedicated to you! We aim to show that help is out there in the form of ready-made decorations and a complete Thanksgiving meal with all the fixin’s. So you can still have a wonderful, heartwarming celebration…without the stress!

THE DECOR: To Buy and (semi)DIY

A bit of time and crafting skills are required (we did say “semi-DIY”) for 2 of the projects below. But they are so simple, they’re guaranteed stress-free. The rest, you buy!

Easy Thanksgiving Entertaining Ideas!

Tip #1 – Set personalized place settings

Inspired by this lovely set from Crate and Barrel, you can order customizable paper plates—printed just for you and your family by Zazzle (see sample).

Tip #2 – Display a warm welcoming sign

Okay, this item is a tad pricey since it is from Pier 1. But it’s such a charming piece that will set the mood at your Thanksgiving gathering. Plus you can bring out year after year, like a family heirloom.

Tip #3 – Hang a rustic autumn garland

Banner, bunting, garland…whatever they’re called, these make an easy and instant festive statement for any occasion. This laser-cut wood leaf garland from World Market has that quaint rustic appeal perfect for the season.

Tip #4 – Make rustic-glam centerpieces

See how spray paint in metallic autumn colors like copper and gold can transform mini gourds, empty wine bottles and a sprig of craft-store berries into a fab focal point for your tables? Thanks to Natalie Paramore for the simple yet stylish DIY!

Tip #5 – Present a book of thanks

What a precious keepsake to have a Thanksgiving guest book you can fill with thoughts of gratitude through the years! Here’s one ready made from World Market, but you could also create your own out of a large scrapbook.

Tip #6 – Use gilded place card holders

You can actually gild various things to prop up your place cards. But as The Sweet Seed reminds us, pine cones are plentiful this time of year and free. So spray-paint away!

THE FEAST: To order or buy ready-to-serve

Hurry and place your food orders while bookings are still available! Also, buy other items like wines and appetizer ingredients early to avoid the last-minute crunch at your local grocery.

Thanksgiving food that you can order online for a stress-free Thanksgiving!

Tip #1 – Get a complete Thanksgiving turkey dinner cooked for you!

What a huge load off your shoulders to have an entire main menu, all cooked and ready to enjoy! You can have a stuffed turkey with two side dishes and pumpkin pie for dessert, courtesy of Williams-Sonoma.

Tip #2 – Prepare appetizers in a jiffy

Whether you browse online or stroll through your supermarket aisles, you’ll be thrilled to find appetizer products that will make you look like a fancy chef come November 26th! Just one example is this Dean & Deluca Savory Pumpkin Bruschetta. Just spread on crackers and serve.

Tip #3 – Order a specially made pie

Aside from the traditional pumpkin pie, order something extra yummy like this Bourbon Pecan Chocolate Pie from Grand Traverse Pie Company! Or have a family member bring a home-baked treat using your grandma’s recipe.

Tip #4 – Select a Thanksgiving wine

Not sure what goes best with your turkey meal? Luckily, Cultivar offers expert advice on favorite wine pairings for Thanksgiving. Then you can make delicious choices at your local wine store.

Tip #5 – Serve pre-made salads

You don’t even have to shred the carrots! That, along with mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and vinaigrette dressing, come ready to serve from Whole Foods Market.

Tip #6 – Present a cheeseboard assortment

An assortment of cheeses like this fabulous array from Artisanal Cheese is certainly something to aspire for. But you can also assemble your own selection to add a gourmet flair to your Thanksgiving this year.

Do we hear you breathing a huge sigh of relief? Now, you can really get excited (not exhausted) about making Thanksgiving memories with your loved ones!

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