Getting ready for Thanksgiving can be stressful, especially if you’re the host. Since the family’s coming over, you want to make sure they’ll enjoy themselves. At the same time, you also have to cook up a delicious meal for your hungry guests.

As you prepare for the occasion, we’ve got a few tips that can help.

  1. Make a Shopping List
    Whenever you’re planning a big event, a list always helps. Jot down everything you think you’ll need for the big day. Getting it out of your head will also help you evaluate which ones you really need and what you can do without.
  1. Schedule Two Grocery Runs
    There’s a lot that goes into a Thanksgiving celebration, so much so that you’re probably going to forget to buy some stuff along the way. Even if you think you’ve got everything listed down, Wholefully suggests making time for a last-minute shopping trip. And if you end up not needing it, that’s extra time you can use to settle down.
  1. Check If You Have Enough Tableware
    It’s not every day that you host a party for this many guests. Check in advance if you have enough plates, bowls, and utensils for the people coming over. You don’t want to be the one to explain why uncle Bob has to wait for someone to finish their plate first.
  1. Make Sure You Have the Right Kitchenware

    You can’t cook a delicious Thanksgiving dinner without the right tools in the kitchen. See if you have what you need for the meals you want to serve as early as possible. That way, you can still buy what you’re missing and have time to figure out how to use anything unfamiliar.

  1. Prepare the Food In Advance
    Want to work as little as possible on Thanksgiving Day? Then cook what you can in advance! You can make gravy and cranberry sauce then stick them in the freezer, prepare side dishes and put them in the fridge, or bake the pie ahead of time. Most importantly, don’t forget about the turkey since it can take a few days to properly thaw. Thanks to The Kitchn for this tip!
  1. Set the Table Early

    When you’re busy in the kitchen, how the plates are arranged should be the last thing on your mind. Get up early to make sure each seat at the table is ready for your guests. You can even set it up the night before so you can focus on preparing the food in the morning.

  1. Try To Keep Guests Away from Kitchen
    Here’s another one from Wholefully: keep distractions away by keeping guests out of the kitchen. Unless you know for sure that someone can help, the kitchen is your domain. But you don’t have to kick people out. Just make it inconvenient for them to hang around by removing the stools and placing the snacks in another area.
  1. Use Disposable Plates and Containers
    You’re probably not looking forward to washing a ton of dishes. If your plans lean toward a more casual experience, consider using disposable plates. Another suggestion is to prepare disposable containers if you want to let guests take home some leftovers. That’s way better than hoping they’ll return your Tupperware someday.

Instead of stressing out, follow these tips and you’ll spend the day enjoying the company of your loved ones. After all, Thanksgiving is about the people – the food is just a bonus.