Last year my husband and I had just moved into our first house and sincewas my family’s holiday (we alternate), I convinced them to let me host for the first time. In the spirit of the holidays, I offered to let my in-laws come as well and they accepted. We did the main stuff – the turkey, the stuffing, and I even made my famous pumpkin pie.
We asked everyone else to bring something and assigned the various items so we’d get an even range and not 14 green bean casseroles. (There were approximately 20 people invited and they all came). Unfortunately, my mother-in-law (who lives 5 minutes away) decided that all the prep she needed to do could be done in my tiny kitchen while I was trying to finish up the stuff I was responsible for. She also decided that we needed 5 types of appetizers (complete with multiple dips that she had to borrow my bowls and mixers to make) at the last minute, etc. There was no place to put anything and since we don’t have dishwasher, stacking up the dishes to be cleaned just caused even more mess.
We survived the day without anyone killing each other but the next day when I went back to work they decided to invade our house for that evening, too, using the grill we got for, etc. My kitchen had been clean when I left in the AM, but by the time I returned home at 6 there they were – making more dips (they’d thrown out the left over dips from the night before since much of it was dairy that sat out all day, etc.) and re-messing up my kitchen.