The holidays are the busiest time of the year for most people. Not only is there Christmas to think about but also the excitement of ringing in the New Year. These are the holidays when you want your closest friends and family with you. Entertaining takes prepping and organization. Here are some tips to get you started on a flawless entertaining season.
1. Lists, Lists, Lists!
One of the best way to getting organized for entertaining is to make lists of as many things you can so you can keep as much organized as possible. It’s as easy as taking the time to sit down and really think about things like guests you want to invite, dishes you want to make, groceries that you will need, decorations you want to incorporate, etc. etc. The amount of lists can be almost endless but it’s a great way to brain storm and keep your ideas organized for referencing later.
2. Know Your Guests
It’s important before you get started on thinking about dishes to know your audience. A guest list should take top priority because you need to know about any allergies or dietary restrictions. It’s also important to know how many people you need to cook for and seat. If your party is going to be a big family affair then you might also want to consider a seating chart. It might sound overly formal and not every dinner party needs one but you might be the best judge of the inner politics and quirks each of your guests have. If you feel like you know who would get along the best and who would clash then take the time to come up with one. In the end it doesn’t have to be set in stone and guests can always move around the table after dinner is over and when socializing really begins.
3. Seating and Menu
Once you know whom you’d like to invite and how much food you need to make, then it’s time to start thinking of how you are going to fit all of the people and food at the table. Don’t be too worried if you don’t have enough chairs for all of your guests. Items like benches and ottomans can also be used. If you always seem to be the type to make more food than necessary when it comes to feeding guests then it’s important have the tools available for guests to take some left overs home. Purchase some inexpensive disposable Tupperware or if you have time, start collecting empty margarine, yogurt and sour cream containers for your guests to use. It doesn’t have to be a fancy container if it’s going to get eaten right away!
4. Decor and Theme
It’s entirely up to you as the guest to decide if your get together is going to be fancy, casual, kid friendly or if there is going to be a theme. Don’t be frightened by the word “theme” it doesn’t have to be anything complicated. It could be as easy as everybody dressing their best or everyone wearing an ugly Christmas sweater. You can also keep it casual and relaxed and have no theme at all. As the host it’s entirely up to you! When it comes to getting the table ready, you don’t need over the top centerpieces, unless that’s what you desire, you can keep it simple with just some white candles of different lengths and thickness. This is also a great reason to dust off your fine china or keep it fun with some purposely mismatched dinner plates!