- Send the invitations.
- Plan a stress-free menu.
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Holidays & Entertaining
Company’s coming? The basics of entertaining, from how much to serve to stress-free party ideas.
Simple ways to make out-of-town visitors feel welcome, comfortable, and pampered.
Have a spare key made.Tell guests where it will be hidden (if they’ll arrive while you’re out) or hand it over when they get there, so they aren’t ringing the doorbell every time they return.Get started
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- Make an invitation list.
- Decide on a theme, if you want one.
- 1. Create a holiday planning binder to stay on track over the holidays.
- 2. About a month before the holidays, write a list of the people for whom you will be buying gifts,
- Update your address list.
- Write a list of the people to whom you will be sending cards.
- Discuss with your child what kind of party he or she wants and whom to invite.
- Pick a date.
- If you don’t already have one in mind, select a charity to donate your earnings to.
- Solicit volunteers by posting sign-up sheets, sending e-mails, or making phone calls.
- Make the cider glaze for the Cider-Glazed Turkey; refrigerate.
- Make the gravy base for the Bourbon Gravy; refrigerate. (Alternatively, make and freeze up to 1 month in advance.)
- Decide which recipes you want to make, keeping in mind that there’s only so much one person―and one kitchen―can do. If you really do need 10 side dishes, look for recipes that use the same oven temperature, so they can cook at the same time, says Bluysen. After you narrow down your menu, reread the recipes that remain. Most can be broken into steps that you can do ahead of time. Then make a list of what you want to get done on each of the days leading up to Thanksgiving, says Bluysen. “I really think if you go through it enough times, you will be more relaxed,” she says.