Story Thread
Hosting Thanksgiving: What Was I Thinking?

By Julia Dwyer Sullivan  •  November 06, 2014

This article belongs to a 2 part series.

  1. Hosting Thanksgiving: What Was I Thinking?
  2. Attending Thanksgiving: How To Be The Best Guest

I think everybody can agree that we’ve all made some enthusiastic, yet bad decisions in our past. I bet I’d be a great saxophonist! I SHOULD have a third martini at this office party! I’ll definitely use that insanely expensive treadmill! Everyday!! Eventually we learn the lessons life has set out to teach us and I’d always assumed that the idea is – we make fewer and fewer bad decisions as time goes on. Right?


I’ve been happily riding the grown-up train for a few years now.  Taxes paid, oil changed on time, garbage taken out. Do I still make tea in a frying pan? Sure. Do I use toilet paper instead of Kleenex…and instead of paper towels? Yes, of course. Do I buy new underwear instead of doing laundry? Okay, I think we’re missing the point here.  For the most part, I’ve got my stuff together. Or I did, until last week when I uttered those three little words I was sure l would regret forever: I’ll host Thanksgiving!


I should start by saying that I moved to the west coast last year and this will be my first Thanksgiving away from my family. The cost of airfare, vacation time at work and normal time constraints have all contributed to my choice to stay put. I was bummed out at first, but more and more I found out that my friends were planning to stick around as well. We decided to have a Friends-giving celebration for the ages! Turkey, potatoes, cranberry sauce in the can and that other kind no one eats. It is going to be fantastic. In fact, it made me so happy that I crossed over into delirious and offered to have everyone over at my place.


I’ve got 12 people coming to my tiny, 400 square foot house to eat Thanksgiving dinner. Currently I own 6 forks, 3 butter knives, a soupspoon, a real spoon and a frying pan. Unless anyone wants tea and then I only have the silverware. How I thought I was going to accommodate these people is beyond me, but I need to come up with some solutions quickly…and on a serious budget.


The first saving grace I’ve stumbled upon is Kohl’s Cash. Not only does Kohl’s provide us with excellent deals every day, but they’re give us 20% of our total cost back in coupons – every time we shop there - from now until November 19thThey also provide tons of discounts on all kinds of specific merchandise. As someone who needs a blender, a stockpot, a shower curtain and a bra to wear to Thanksgiving… this is going to be a lifesaver.


My next stop is going to be Sur la table, where they are having huge Thanksgiving sales. In addition to their coupons, they’re offering fantastic savings on many of the staples a great holiday dinner needs. Roasting pans, serving dishes, extra place settings, cookware, silverware, glasses – everything. The best part is, their stuff is gorgeous. With these kind of dishes and tableware, people are going to think I have a 401K!  And look at this kettle! I think it’s time.


My final (and maybe most ambitious?) stop is going to be at Michaels. It might surprise you at this point in the post, to find out that I am not a naturally crafty. That being said, my memories of Thanksgiving involve turkeys made from handprints and beautiful tablescapes. After consulting Michael’s special online Thanksgiving craft section, I’ve become confident that I can pull a decoration or two out of my pilgrim hat. And with the coupons and special offers they provide, I won’t have to endure a great depression in order to come up with great decorations.


So will I be able to pull this friendly, family-inspired party off? Or will my friends be homesick for the holidays? Only time will tell. I do feel so much more confident about this decision since finding all of these fantastic stores and deals online.


There’s no way this mission would be possible without the bargains I’ve found at these stores. I guess it just goes to show you: maybe we don’t ever grow out of the bad decisions - maybe we just get better at finding great solutions?  Check back to see how this party shakes out. I’ll be sure to keep your posted! 

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In this Story Thread: Hosting Thanksgiving: What Was I Thinking?

  1. Hosting Thanksgiving: What Was I Thinking?
  2. Attending Thanksgiving: How To Be The Best Guest

Story Thread This article belongs to
Story Thread

Julia Dwyer Sullivan Julia Dwyer Sullivan Julia Dwyer Sullivan graduated from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts with a degree in Dramatic Writing. She now works as a starving artist (she ate the degree years ago).

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