Hosting Thanksgiving can be fun and affordable.
Is it your turn to host Thanksgiving? Although the task of cooking for friends and loved ones may seem daunting and expensive, these tips can help make your Thanksgiving a budget-friendly joyous and memorable occasion.
1. Share the Joy! Go Potluck
Don’t try to be a holiday hero by preparing everything. Instead ask your guests to bring their favorite appetizer, side dish or dessert. By going potluck extended family get to show-off their kitchen skills or if they’re culinary-challenged they can bring a favorite beverage.
2. DIY Decorations
Instead of dropping cash on centerpieces and place settings use what you already have, make what you don’t and rely on nature’s beauty—leaves, decorative gourds and pine cones. If you’re not skilled in the decorative arts, follow the potluck approach with Thanksgiving decorations and ask a guest with a beautiful garden or a gift for arranging to make the centerpiece.
3. Keep it Simple
Don’t go overboard with recipes that require extraneous and expensive ingredients. Instead select key favorite dishes and go for the less pricey choice, like pumpkin pie over pecan. Don’t obsess over designing your table like a magazine spread or offering a lavish spread of gourmet choices. Instead, focus on family favorites and simple elements—even a family tablecloth or placemats with designs by the kids create a warm, welcoming feel without a big budget.
4. Shop Wisely
Go the grocery store armed with a list and resist the temptation of impulse purchases. Check out the grocery story circulars and look for special deals like free turkeys through rewards programs and in-store coupons. If your guest list is large consider a discount store where you can buy in bulk sizes.
5. Plan a Unique Activity
Thanksgiving is so much more than the meal! Plan a unique and fun activity that doesn’t cost a cent. Create a Thankful Box where guests write what they are grateful for on a slip of paper to be read together. Play a game of charades, go for a walk around the neighborhood, the possibilities are endless.
Hopefully, these practical budget-friendly tips can help you create a memorable and festive feast without breaking the bank.