UNITED STATES—The holiday season is fast approaching, with Halloween behind us, people should be aware that Thanksgiving is literally less than 2 weeks away. What does that mean? It’s time to start preparing! Some people might say, well what exactly does that mean? It means if you are hosting the big Thanksgiving festivities there is no time like the present. You without a doubt have to have a head count of the number of people you expect to be heading to your home on Turkey Day.

Some might say that is not important, but trust me it is. There is no worse feeling than running out of food or not having enough of a specific dish to cater to your guests. I’m not a believer of overdoing it when it comes to food, but you do indeed want to have a safe cushion of food to cover all your guests and to have a bit of leftovers at the same time. I tell this to people all the time: Thanksgiving is the one time of year, that having leftovers is a must for me.

After all the chaos of doing that Black Thursday aka Black Friday shopping a turkey sandwich, with cranberry sauce is the perfect meal to allow you to lay on the couch and get plenty of rest. Plan a list of all the dishes you plan to cook. Yeah, this is super important people. You don’t want to attempt to wing dishes at the last minute and on top of that if you write a list you’ll know what ingredients you need and what ingredients you do not need.

That list of dishes you plan to cook helps you determine how much money you will need to cover the big feast. In addition, don’t feel the need to do all the cooking America. This has happened to me on several occasions, where I have done literally all the cooking and told family and friends to just bring their bodies. That is a problem because you find yourselves cooking well into the festivities, so much to the point that you are exhausted. I mean exhausted to the point all you want to do is take a nap. That’s not what Thanksgiving is all about; it’s about spending time with family and friends and being thankful for all the things you have. It’s impossible to indulge in the holiday if you’re running around serving everyone, cooking dishes and focused on trying to ensure everything goes perfect.

Which brings me to my next point: hiccups will happen and don’t sweat it. It might take a bit longer than you expected to cook a dish, a few more people than you expected arrive, you find yourself at battle with a family member, the list goes on and on. Don’t get into an argument; let the small stuff slide by. There is no point being over stressed about something that doesn’t matter and won’t have a massive impact. Now many of you might frown your face at me, but frankly I could give a damn. Don’t be afraid to utilize disposable plates, utensils and cups. I mean we’ve done the fancy dishes multiple times at our dinners and there is only 1-2 people willing to wash those dishes America and its usually the people who prepared and hosted the festivity to begin with.

Last, but not least, do not allow people to indulge in leftovers until EVERYONE has eaten. I have seen a ton of people who literally make plates before eating and then go about eating, not realizing that some have not eaten and might have been eyeing that last piece of turkey or some mac and cheese. If you don’t like that rule, so be it.