1. Communicate. Tell your boyfriend or girlfriend ahead of time how
everyone your family is going to react. Like, if you KNOW your
grandfather is going to say something inappropriate, it'll make it less
awkward if they know that going in.
2. Discuss Any Topics That Are Off-Limits. Obviously it's good to
avoid politics and religion. But if there are any other hot-button
issues, let them know BEFORE they put their foot in their mouth.
3. Get on the Same Page. Especially with your "how we met" story. If you told your mom you met at a museum when you really met at a bar, your date should know.
4. Bring Something. If you're not cooking dinner, bring a bottle of
wine or a dessert. It'll give your family something to focus on, and
it'll help break the ice.
5. Don't Apologize. Don't apologize to your date about your crazy
family, or to your family for your date. They're part of you, and
everyone should respect that.
6. Relax. Spending holidays with each other's families can be
stressful, so the best thing both of you can do is relax. If you're
nervous, you're just going to make everyone ELSE nervous, and that's
when things get REALLY awkward.
Good Luck! :-)