Why not host Thanksgiving outdoors? I mean, after all, wasn’t the first Thanksgiving celebrated outside? An afternoon or evening family dinner is a great way for your family and friends to truly enjoy a season of thanks, especially if they’re coming down from the frigid north for the holidays. Here are some ideas you can use to make assure that your outdoor plans don’t get spoiled.

1. Have The Table Set

set-tableYou may not need to have every fork and knife set out on the table early on, but it’s best to have the table decorations already in place maybe a day or so in advance. Depending on how elaborate your going to be, this is definitely something to keep in mind. Your drinking glasses, silverware, and side plates can be stacked neatly at the end of the table. So when the bird is ready to carve, it will only take a few minutes to finalize the table. [clear]

2. Recruit The Youth

childs-playIf you’re a grandparent or have a younger generation of guests, enlist them in the pre-meal preparations! From setting the table, to watching the food so it won’t overcook, your younger guests are a great way to help take some of the burden off of your work flow. Plus, its a fantastic way to spend time with them and create memories that will last for years. You may even create a new tradition in the process! [clear]

3. Pre-Cooked Dishes

happy-hourYou don’t have to hand everyone a book of crossword puzzles upon entrance, but some form of light entertainment is always a good idea, especially if you’re expecting young guests. Grab a few horse shoes to toss around, or a frisbee, and since its fall, grab the old pig skin and let the boys and girls lets loose in the backyard. If you’re more into the relaxing adult side of things, while the food is cooking or being finalized, this time can make for a nice cocktail hour and chat session out on the deck or patio. There is never wasted time during the holidays! [clear]

5. It is Thanksgiving, After All

too-happyLast but certainly not least, the most important tip of all, spend time with your family and enjoy the day! Make it so the work isn’t the main event of this holiday occasion. There may be a lot to prepare for, but that doesn't mean you should stress yourself out over every detail. Since you have the option of hosting outside, that should eliminate a lot of the indoor clutter and chaos. Even if its just sitting out by the pool or on the deck, enjoying time with friends and family is the most important time spent this holiday season. It is Thanksgiving, after all. [clear] All Set by Elke Sisco Child's Play by Christina Spicuzza Julia's Mum's Mograbiah Salad by Alpha Work Happy Hour by Patrick Too Happy by littlemaiba