There was a letter to Dear Abby a couple of days ago. The woman complained that she was 43, had been doing Thanksgiving for 19 years, the job had been dumped on her by her mother who was burned out on doing it. Oh, and it was the same 12 guests each year.She signed her complaint 'exhausted hostess'.
First of all: boo hoo!
With that kind of po-faced attitude, her guests are probably only attending out of a sense of duty.
She is doing it wrong. Unless she is Martha Stewart, the companionship is more important than any thing else. I do the basics..the turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, and sometime candied yams (if I'm in the mood). Other households bring rolls/butter, veggies, assorted pies, snacks, etc. We use disposable plates and glasses, paper napkins. Real silverware, which gets counted before the garbage goes out. There is no centerpiece unless someone brings one.
And FYI: I'm 63, this will be my 40th Thanksgiving hosting my relatives. The fewest we ever had was 5, the mostest 27. Most years around 13-18. This year 13. One nephew in UT with wife's people (down 4), another nephew to NM to wife's people (down 5), and one nephew working grocery store until 4pm (down 2).
counting the hours till Turkey Day!