It’s almost time for Black Friday, my friends. You’ve pored over the sales fliers, assembled a trusty team of shopping buddies and carefully planned a store-to-store strategy, (including all the hottest deals at Gordmans, of course!) After the early morning rush, what better way to thank the people who would throw themselves onto the last big-screen TV for you than by hosting a hearty, post-shopping brunch?


The ideal dress code is pajamas, slippers optional.


Make a cheeky garland to drape across your mantle or doorway by threading twine through the handles of shopping bags. Tie a knot at each handle to keep the bags from all sliding to the middle.


An egg casserole is easy to prep ahead of time and bake in the oven post-shopping. Scramble a dozen eggs, whisk in a cup of heavy cream, add your choice of additions (think crumbled sausage or bacon, shredded cheese, sliced mushrooms, diced green peppers), season with salt and pepper and pour into a greased 9-by-13-inch casserole pan. Cover with foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. When you return from shopping, preheat the oven to 350º F and bake for 10-15 minutes, until eggs are firm and golden. Or create an simple breakfast buffet with muffins, bagels and miniature cereal boxes with regular, chocolate and strawberry milk to pour in.


A coffee bar is just the ticket to give your guests their second wind. Pour your choice of coffee toppings (chocolate chips, coconut shavings, candy sprinkles—anything goes) into bowls or cups the night before. Bring out whipped cream and flavored creamers, brew a pot of coffee and you’re ready to caffeinate. For a boozy brunch, uncork a bottle of sparkling wine (look for an inexpensive champagne, prosecco or cava) and mix your own champagne cocktails with fruit juices. Try orange juice for Mimosas, peach nectar for Bellinis or cranberry juice for Poinsettias; pour the juices into carafes the night before for a pretty presentation. Guests can fill their own glasses one-third of the way with juice and top off with bubbly.


Amuse your fellow shoppers by doling out awards for the day: Best Getaway Driver, Most Valuable Player, Top Deal Huntress, Most Frequent Bathroom Break Taker … whatever fits the bill for your crew. Pick up award ribbons from the craft store or trinkets from the dollar store to use as prizes and make the ceremony especially photo-worthy. Or put a shopping-themed spin on the traditional “What’s in your purse?” shower game and award prizes to whomever can most quickly unearth various items from their handbag: fast-food breakfast wrappers, the longest or shortest receipt … you get the idea.