Well folks, I think it’s safe to say the holidays are upon us and it’s time to prepare to celebrate with loved ones, even though it hasn’t snowed here yet. Usually Portland only gets rain this time of year, and coming from a place where it always snows has been kind of a shock to my system. Perhaps this adds to my lack of decking of the halls.
1. Cook whatever you can in advance. If you’re planning a party, choose appetizers and main courses that still taste great after being reheated. After my daughter is asleep, I will throw a meal together in the slow cooker and let it cook through the night. That way, by morning, you have a dinner done, or the main course cooked for your party. You can store it in the fridge until you’re ready to reheat it . For my appetizers, I take some help from the store and choose simple items I only need to arrange on a platter. Nice salamis, cheeses, crackers, olives, grapes and nuts makes for simple appetizers that everyone loves. For dessert, you could pick up a bunch of holiday treats from a bakery and don’t forget coffee. It makes for a great ending to an evening!
2. Assign your guests specific things to bring. A lot of times when you invite close friends over for a party, they will more likely than not ask if they can bring anything or do anything to help. Take them up on the offer and send out assignments. Instead of saying “bring an appetizer,” you could say “bring those famous sweet-and-sour meatballs you made for Easter!” or something along those lines. Being specific makes it easier to plan what you’re going to make for the party. That way you will know exactly what you’re going to get and how your party is going to come together.
6. Don’t have a rigid schedule. People can be late, dinner might take longer to eat, your guests might want to talk a little longer then you had planned. All these things are no big deal and you shouldn’t sweat the small stuff. The worst thing for a guest is to feel pressure from their frazzled host! Just plan accordingly! When in doubt, take a deep breath and say “oh well.” I promise it’s not the end of the world.
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