NO WORRIES hostess, ENTERTAIN happy!

A hostess who are the happiest in life understand that the art of entertaining is not about what they are hosting but how they host. Celebrations, whether they be special occasions, Birthday party, Holiday party, or a spontaneous cookout, is really about spending time with the people you love. While there are certain rules that are timeless, tried, and true for entertaining, there are other moments that require “planned spontaneity,” a go-with-the-flow kind of attitude. There are 3 attributes to keep in mind:

  1. Sincerity
  2. Simplicity
  3. Serenity

When thinking upon these attributes, I’ve come to this conclusion about each of them, which I firmly believe we can apply not only to entertaining but also to how we live and interact with others on a daily basis!

  1. A hostess who is “Sincere” has no false pretenses or any efforts for self-promotion, just true engagement and good conversation with their guests. Also as of late, since my husband and I have entertained many  times over the years and visitors staying at our home; we now find and it is more enjoyable to host smaller gatherings.
  2. “Simplicity” First Identify the essential, eliminate the rest, I say! As a hostess, we can ask ourselves, “How can I simplify the decorations, the food preparation, and invitations – but not eliminate the beauty?” Simplicity is sophistication and very, very important or you will get lost in time, energy and perhaps lots of money. Keep it minimal and perhaps a theme if needed. Paper products, flowers and cake will do just fine. Ask for RSVPS either way by certain date (depending on type of gathering). If your house is dusty and cluttered. Simply tidy up by gathering with laundry baskets and put in closet. No will see the dust; do not even worry about it! But if you are gathering near coffee table or kitchen counters or dining room table, use a clean damp cloth to wipe and dust be gone! Make sure your dishwasher is empty before guests arrive so you can add dirty dishes at the end. If you using large trays keep handy in closet when put away. When you have large amounts of food and prefer easy clean up, use throw away foil pans. Make sure you have sealable containers/baggies for leftovers. Store leftover wine in Mason jar in refrigerator. The tight lid and cool temperature slows the wine’s breakdown process. It will stay fresh for up to 5 days. If guests asks what they can bring graciously accept and ask of what you may need. If they do not bring that item, have a backup plan. Have spouse/guest help run to store for needed item or keep boxed cookies in pantry in case they didn’t bring the dessert. Another gathering kept very simple is by inviting guests over for coffee and dessert.
  3. Serenity might be the last attribute listed, but it’s one of the most important. A hostess who is unhappy over the unplanned and uncomfortable moments of party planning sets the mood for the whole party. Serenity is a unified state of the mind, heart, and soul. Even if disaster strikes, serenity is a deliberate action of calming ourselves from within so that we don’t make or break a party.

Good wine makes for good conversation as well. I usually buy from a local vineyard called Alba Vineyards in Finesville, New Jersey. It is a lovely drive from our home down Route 611 off Easton, PA. You pass Riegelsville Inn and over a bridge to get on the Jersey side. The barn is Historic when the sell the wines, you can sign up for discounts with Gold Membership and check out their events held on weekends. When heading back home stop at Riegelsville Inn for lunch or dinner. Delicious and is nice sit along the canal.

If entertaining is art, then it is an expression of our own skill and imagination produced in a way to be appreciated by others. There is beauty to be found in the party, from flowers to linens, to mismatched serving platters filled with good food or even catered food and conversations that stretch well into the evening.  How lovely is that? Do not allow the imperfections distract you, instead focus on the purpose of your gatherings. Sitting on back porch glasses brimming with beverages and plates piled high, good conversations, and laughter  is about being with the ones you care about. You not only opened up your home giving, but receiving is so much joy in return.