6 Things I Always Do Before Hosting People For a Thanksgiving Dinner
This year, I finally moved into an apartment big enough where I feel comfortable hosting more than three people at a time. That said, no matter what size home you have, hosting is always an undertaking, especially if there is a meal involved. Between cooking, cleaning, and actually spending time with my guests, I sometimes feel like I've spread myself a little too thin. So, being the type-A, planning-obsessed, organization freak that I am, I've come up with a few tricks to make myself — and my guests — feel more relaxed anytime I host a dinner party. If you're hosting a Thanksgiving (or Friendsgiving!) dinner this year like me, you'll want to try and get as much done before people arrive as possible — so keep reading and start crossing off items from your to-do list.
Make Sure Your Home Is Clean and Tidy
As snobby as it might be, I admit that I judge my friends a little bit if I walk into their house and there's dirty dishes in the sink, decor askew, or general clutter that should have been put away. I know! It's harsh, but TBH, don't we all do that a little bit? So, to save myself from the inner judginess of anyone coming to my house, I make sure I've vacuumed the floors, fluffed my pillows, lit a candle, and wiped down all the surfaces with Clorox® Clean-Up® Cleaner + Bleach. Cue the looks of approval.
Get Your Bathroom in Order
Same goes for my bathroom, because there's literally nothing more gross than a dirty toilet. The bathroom should be inviting, not icky, so I always give my toilet bowl a quick scrub with Clorox® Toilet Bowl Cleaner with Clinging Bleach Gel — it's the easiest way to get a sparkling and germ-free commode. Likewise, I make sure the sink is free of soap scum and dried toothpaste, and put away my daily products. All you need to leave out is a fancy hand soap, extra TP, and biodegradable, disposable hand wipes — because a hand towel can get gross real quick. A room spray or just matches are always a nice, and much-appreciated, touch.
Set the Table Before Guests Arrive
Even if you're doing a serve-yourself-in-the-kitchen vibe, I still think it looks prettier to have your table set when people come over. Even though I have a dishwasher, I love using eco-friendly disposable plates like these. It makes cleanup so much easier at the end of the night, and the bamboo servewear is sturdy while still being aesthetically pleasing. Complete the tablescape with a linen runner and greenery like eucalyptus or pine.
Have Snacks Out When People Arrive
I'm a huge fan of a well-laid-out charcuterie board. All you need are a few meats and cheeses, a variety of finger foods like nuts, olives, or figs, and a cutting board. Not only does it keep people's stomachs from rumbling while dinner is being prepared, it gives them something to do with their hands while mingling. Plus, it looks so dang pretty!
Have Cold Water on Hand
Having a lot of cold water on hand is a must. Whether your guests are drinking alcohol or soda, they're going to want water at some point. I keep a large jug of filtered water in my fridge — it's much nicer to the planet than throwing away a bunch of half-drunk plastic bottles of water at the end of the night, and a better look than making guests get water from the tap.
Create a Playlist For the Night
You don't want awkward silences being the thing most remembered about your dinner party. I always have a playlist ready that is pretty mellow (depending on the people coming over) and have it playing at a low volume when people arrive. I also love to invite my friends to help make one big playlist on Spotify — we keep adding to it every time we get together.