Our First Thanksgiving

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

I was going to post this yesterday but I didn't think it was appropriate to talk turkey on St. Patrick's Day. 

In the last post about our new floors I mentioned that Jon and I hosted Thanksgiving at our house for the very first time. Looking back it was not a good idea to start such a huge project right before such a big holiday. NEVER. AGAIN. But you live and learn... and it was good because it definitely gave us a deadline. Had it not been for the fact that seven other people were coming for Thanksgiving dinner I'm sure Jon and I would have worked at a much slower pace.

I had no clue how much work it is to host a holiday. I knew that it meant my house had to be really clean and I would probably have a ton of dishes leftover but that was it. I was so naive. First Jon and I had to buy more plates so we could have complete set of twelve settings. We had six settings that we had received as a wedding gift. That obviously worked for Jon and I and to host our families informally but we knew it wouldn't fly for Thanksgiving. Luckily the place settings were on sale and the guy who helped us to set up our registry allowed us to use the registry completion discount even though it was a little past our anniversary (which he totally remembered by the way). While I was at Macy's I picked up gold placemats (also on super sale). I figured gold was color that could be used for any of the winter holidays and it looked nice with a tablecloth I had bought a while back for the occasion.

Then I had to buy water glasses. We have glasses that we use for everyday but I wanted fancier looking water goblets. (Yes, water goblets. I really wanted to host a fancy dinner.) I actually found some at the Dollar Tree of all places. I settled on those because the price was right, they had twelve in stock and I could always buy more if one broke. I also wanted plate chargers and cloth napkins but I couldn't find any I liked in time. Next time....

I had already worked on decorations so all that I really had to do was set the table. Our dining table seats six but we were expecting a total of eight guests (ten counting Jon and myself) so we set up a little card table at the end of our table and borrowed a couple of chairs from my mom. I also wanted to start a new Thanksgiving tradition to remember who was at Thanksgiving. I tweaked the thumbprint tree thing people do for wedding guest books and laid it out on the coffee table. Over the years we'll use different colors to add to it.

Another crafty touch was my chalkboard menu. My cousin had the frame and cardboard and I had the paint. I painted the frame white (while I was painting all the baseboards) and spray painted the cardboard with chalkboard paint. I already had the chalk pens so this was free and easy to do. Jon made a rosemary and sage turkey and a mustard and brown sugar glazed ham. It was so good we had NO leftovers. We ended up laying the food out next the menu so we could grab some from the kitchen or dining table.

I also created a little drink station on our console table. I laid out the glasses, water and wine so people could fill up without cramming into our tiny kitchen. My awesome coworker helped me make little drink tags so people wouldn't confuse their glasses.

We also got a fire pit (courtesy of my parents) for our patio. Since our living room is on the small side we wanted our guests to use the outdoor space. It worked out nicely (who doesn't love sipping wine with loved ones around a fire?) but I don't have any photos to share.

And of course, no holiday would be complete without the tiniest member of our family. Poseidon enjoyed being fed bits of turkey from my sister's plate and a little afternoon nap.

I would say that our first Thanksgiving was a success but I'm not ready to do it again anytime soon! Jon and I were just happy that we didn't totally screw up the turkey and the floors were done. We might feel up to hosting again next year. Maybe.

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