Hosting Thanksgiving Dinner in a Small Space

Mark and I have been renting an apartment for as long as we've been married and I love it! We get to turn a small space into a cozy home, all our own. I love decorating and getting innovative with ways we make space (sometimes it gets tricky though). One thing that I don't love however, is stressing about having people over in that small space.

Our first apartment was really tiny. A bedroom, kitchen, and living room and a tiny little bathroom. Now, thankfully we have a bit more space but if we aren't careful, entertaining can get overwhelming. This year (as well as last) we hosted Friendsgiving and I felt as if I got the cleaning/rearranging/making space motions down, and decided to host Thanksgiving dinner. Very exciting stuff!

The week is here and now I am realizing how important having a plan is. Entertaining in small spaces can be tricky, and the more people you have the more of a nightmare it might turn out to be. This is why creating a game plan is so important! If I was just winging it and hoping everything worked out okay, I'm sure I would be a ball of stress. This year though, I am remarkably calm and very excited to open up our home to family on Thanksgiving! All thanks to planning ahead.

Today I wanted to share my "plan" with you and hopefully it can make entertaining during the holidays a little easier, especially if you're in a small space. Start out with making a list of all the groceries you'll need, including the seasonings and garnishes. I can't tell you how many times I've frantically called Mark and asked him to stop at the grocery store and get a lemon or parsley because I forgot them. You don't want to have to run out to the grocery store on Thanksgiving!

Make sure that you clean. Small spaces aren't that bad if they are clean. I'm talking scrub the toilet, wash the dishes, sweep the floors, and yes... take out the trash. Doing all of this a day or two before guests arrive will make things so much easier! Put away clutter. That's another important step to making sure people feel comfortable in your small space.

Set a pretty table and make sure you have enough seating. We had to borrow some folding chairs this year, but everyone will have a seat! No awkward moments of "do you have any other chairs? No? Okay I can stand and eat or share with Aunt Sue." As far as setting a pretty table goes, all you really need to do is make sure the table is wiped clean, you have enough plates and silverware, and you have some candles, faux fall foliage, or mini pumpkins. (At least that's what I'm using!)

Final step: Enjoy time with family. We all know that holidays can get stressful. But they can also be filled with love, new memories, and spending time with people you see only a few times a year. Enjoy it! Don't let the mess or conversation topics stress you out. Put on the parade, the game, some music, and just enjoy the holiday!


  1. Love this! I also live in a pretty small house and I love how cozy it is but it can be difficult having too many people over, haha.

  2. I live in a small apartment and I've hosted a small thanksgiving at my place. It wasn't bad at all. It's all about simplifying.

  3. Natalie, you are so brave in hosting Friendsgiving in a small space. When we first got married (ages ago!), we had a small apartment and stuff was everywhere. I could never get it all organized and clean. Good for you, and I hope it all went great!


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