This year, I settled into my first apartment and officially hosted my first dinner party. What I quickly learned; hosting is no small feat! Between preparing food from appetizers to desserts, and entertaining your guests, keeping your cool can actually be rather difficult.
Like many of you, this holiday season, I’ll be hosting again, but I’m not about to get overwhelmed by holiday entertaining. Instead, I’ve picked up these hosting hacks that will make entertaining so much easier:
Get started early
You may be throwing the party, but you should definitely get the chance to enjoy it too. Avoid running around during the entire evening by prepping whatever you can in advance. This can include setting the table the night before or baking your holiday dessert ahead of time. One hack that is also helpful is to prepare a ‘special' punch bowl in advance. Mixing drinks can take a lot of time and everyone wants more than just one!
Keep it simple
Cooking for friends and family can be nerve racking, but sticking to what you know best and keeping things simple can make things so much easier. Forget planning an elaborate five-course meal or a holiday themed menu you’ve never attempted before. If you have a recipe that you’re known for, go ahead and make it! Stick to what you feel comfortable doing and remember, the holidays is a time to enjoy friends and family, not to run circles around them for the ‘perfect’ soirée.
Ask for Help
Hosting is a team effort, so don’t be shy to ask for help or to accept help when it is offered. Ask your husband, kids or even your guests if you need help with serving or putting the finishing touches on your holiday meal. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with asking and it will make holiday hosting much easier, and enjoyable.
Keep the kids busy
Kids are bound to be extra excited during the holidays and that means it won’t be easy to keep them in their seats at the holiday table. Plan things ahead of time that can keep them busy throughout the evening such as setting up a kid-friendly space where they can play or watch a holiday movie. Keep older kids busy too by asking them to help supervise.
This holiday season, forget hosting the ’perfect’ evening because there’s just no such thing. Instead, focus on having a fun and entertaining night. When you push the idea of perfection out of your mind, you’ll see just how easy and fun holiday hosting can be. So when the appetizers burn in the oven, just grab a glass of wine and let the good times keep rolling.