Only 73 Shopping & Planning Days till Thanksgiving
by Neal Kielar, Tastemaker in Residence
Now that Labor Day is in the past and summer is effectively a memory, is it too soon to anticipate the many holidays in the coming months? Consider that for most folks, these holidays pack more gathering, celebrating, eating and gift-giving than the holidays that precede them.
Why wait wait until time is short and anxiety is high? It takes some time, planning and a bit of happenstance to make celebrations and gifts memorable. So let's get started.
- You already have a good idea of who's on your gift list, at least the core people in your life. Why not begin the browsing and buying experience now.
- Browse online for inspiration (and price comparisons)
- Visit a local shop you know would appeal to your gift recipient but maybe not one they frequent so you don't get something they've gotten for themselves
- Go shopping together just for fun and see if your recipient tips a hand about something she/he really likes
- Always consider vintage stores for gifts that are unusual and that have some history
- Consider something experiential rather than material (although the two aren't mutually exclusive)
- If you see something that really clicks take the plunge and buy it
PLANNING FOR AN EVENT
- Line up help early; gatherings seem to always be more work when they happen than when you're planning them
- Be efficient with your tabletop by relying on at least a few things you already have at hand, then supplementing with something that enhances the core
- Same thing with food and beverages. There's nothing wrong with leaning on a sure-fire recipe, and you can always enhance it to give it that special occasion feel
- Give everyone in your household a task or two, in advance, during and after the gathering
HOME STYLING & PREP
- Reduce everyday clutter (worth doing continuously) to make way for special decor and to make your space function better with guests
- Replace something old and worn with a fresh replacement (you wanted to anyway) that will give your space more personality
- Get into a cleaning routine early so you're doing the place top to bottom the day before your event
Yes, entertaining is a lot of work. But you can pace yourself over time and actually enjoy the day with everyone else.