About the Author

Melissa Michaels is the NY Times Bestselling author of Love The Home You Have and The Inspired Room book. Her blog, The Inspired Room, was voted Better Homes & Gardens Readers' Favorite decorating blog in 2014 and 2015. Melissa is a church planter's wife and a mom to three human kids and...

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  1. Melissa,
    Yes, I’ll be hosting a Thanksgiving dinner this year….mostly family and then I do invite friends who are single, or divorced, or don’t have family they are joining. I love the idea of place cards with names. Even something simple with their name says, You are welcome here…come to the table. I have simplified thanksgiving a lot so that I am not too exhausted to enjoy it. I also have to agree that sometimes the spontaneous, simple get-togethers are the best.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

  2. Thank you, Melissa, for this very do-able suggestion. This Thanksgiving, for the very first time, my two oldest sons will BOTH be celebrating with their inlaws . . . so I’m determined to gather a collection of people from here, there, and everywhere to fill up the empty spaces around my table. Place cards will be a great way to pre-plan seating and to let everyone know how welcome they are and how thankful I am for the gift of their presence.

  3. The spontaneous ones always live long in our memories, don’t they? 🙂 It’s easy to over-plan, over-think, contrive — but, those things don’t ever seem to garner the same nostalgia as the unplanned things we’re obedient to in the moment. 🙂

  4. Melissa,

    That’s a precious story!
    I love using place cards to make a table ‘special’ even when its simple. Its a great way to involve kids too, as I have had mine use their creativity to make the place cards over the years.

  5. I get to host Thanksgiving for my blended and extended family every other year and it is one of my favorite things! I love to use place cards and include the “little” cousins as we set and prepare the table. I want everyone to have a part, but be relaxed, too. I hope we find more ways to be inclusive this holiday season.

  6. What a fun way to celebrate thanksgiving with your sister and almost husband! Memories made for sure. Not many at our table again but we have fun with 3 of us. Tablecloth, fancy silverware, candles, seasonal napkins and food. Never have made place cards. Not something we do in our area. Rethinking that one!

  7. For large gatherings I’ve often used place cards, but never thought of their value beyond solving the confusion or awkwardness of choosing a seat among many. To communicate that everyone belongs and each one is special is a great reason to use them–even for a gathering of four, as you did. Thank you, Melissa!

  8. Melissa,

    Spontaneous meals are the best! People don’t come over for fancy foods or large meals. They want to feel as if they belong & matter to you. We want you to be fully present-not tired from cooking. Like the idea of place cards & small simple decorations. The lighting is great also!

    Blessings 🙂

  9. I’ve hosted so many Thanksgivings, some so huge, others quite small. At some point, I lost any pleasure in them. Now I’m trying to figure out what makes sense.
    I recently remembered and sang one of my favorite hymns. I’m hoping it will guide me.
    I come, O Savior, to thy table
    for weak and weary is my soul
    You, bread of life, alone are able
    To satisfy and make me whole.
    Lord, may thy body and thy blood
    Be for my soul: the highest good!