When you finally settled on a day for a large gathering of your extended family and sent out invitations, you couldn't contain your excitement. You should be worried now. The workload at work is heavier than anticipated, the children participate in a variety of after-school activities each evening, and you simply do not have the time to plan out all of the particulars.
Try not to freak out. For your convenience, we have compiled a short checklist that will guide you through this process. It will assist you in getting your plans in motion and eliminate any stress you may be feeling, allowing you to concentrate on thoroughly enjoying the occasion your family is celebrating. The next step is as follows.
Get The Food Sorted
You could save money by planning a couple of easy dishes that are delicious and then buying the ingredients in bulk for those dishes. You can also make dishes using ingredients that are currently on sale at your neighborhood grocery store. However, making arrangements for a catering service could eliminate the stress associated with all of the preparation, and it would also leave more room for variety and improvement in terms of the food's quality.
Let Others Help
When Aunt Lou or Uncle Joe inquire, "What can I bring?" Be sure to steer clear of the "Oh, nothing" response as much as possible. If they are willing to assist, then you should let them! In the days leading up to the event, there will be fewer things for you to buy and prepare, which will relieve some of the stress associated with hosting the gathering. When there are many people working on a task, it becomes easier.
Establish A Seating Arrangement
Even though a seating plan might appear to be too formal for some families, it might actually be very helpful in certain situations. If there are certain individuals who simply do not get along with one another, a seating plan may be an easy and speedy solution to the problem.
If there are particular subjects that you are aware have the potential to derail the evening, a simple reminder might be all that is needed to prevent an argument from occurring before it does. If you suspect that there may be a problem, be ready to change the subject of the conversation or say that you need to "take care of something" in the kitchen.
Have Some Games At The Ready
There is a time for conversation, and there is also a time for fun and games. At least a couple of entertaining games should be prepared for the latter. Even though it's fun to have a conversation with my cousin Stu about his new job and his thoughts on politics, it's even more entertaining to watch him try to draw a tree house while we're playing Pictionary. Alternately, you could assemble everyone around the video game console.
These tips should help you to plan a stress-free family get-together, Do you know any other tips? We’d love to hear about them in the comments below.