Let's Look-Entertaining Ideas

Hey Hey!

It's time for Let's Look with Shay, where once a month we take a peek at the way we handle things in our lives.  FYI-we'd LOVE for you to join us next month.  If you blog, please link-up in December!  We're sharing our gift wrapping stations next month.  I have no doubts some of you will blow me away with how crafty your space is.  It'll be fun!  You should join us!

Today, we're sharing ENTERTAINING IDEAS!

Whew!  Let me just tell you-in my fifteen-ish years of adulthood I've learned a lot about entertaining and myself.  What I've learned is if I do everything, then I'm somewhat of a fussy host.  I'm worried about the food, I'm stressed about the drinks, or what condition my house is in and it turns into me being the conductor of the hot mess express!  I'm so worried and stressed the whole night that it's not even fun for me!

Please note...it took me a long time to realize that's just ME!  And that's okay, but if I'm going to go to all the trouble of having people over then I want to enjoy it.  So maybe you're like me and you tend to get a little fussy/overwhelmed/stressed/FILL IN THE BLANK when you're having people over.  If so, I've learned some tips over the years that have really helped.  Hopefully, they'll help you too.

#1  DO NOT MAKE ALL THE FOOD!
This is probably the most important thing I've learned.  I remember having people over {maybe for the first or second gathering in our first home} and I'm positive I tried to make ten appetizers.  WHAT was I thinking?  Is there any wonder I was a sweaty mess by the time my guests arrived?  Now I've learned if I cook for guests I make something super simple that will be in the slow cooker long before my guests arrive, I make a lasagna {or something similar} earlier in the day, or we put something on the grill.  Having the main course out of the way makes thing so much easier.  Otherwise, I'll pick up the main dish and prepare a side or two at home.

#2 KEEP IT SIMPLE!
A main course, a side or two, and a dessert is great!  I used to way overdo it on the food and my guests really could have cared less.  They're just there for the company.  Right?  I've learned to simplify things and it helps control my hot mess express status.

#3  PARTY OUT OF THE HOUSE!
I've learned my limits over the years and when we host kiddos' birthday parties-we have the party outside of our house.  It can be a local party place, a gym, or even the park but having a house full of kids along with all the party details is too much for me.  Kudos to the moms who thrive in this environment, but I've learned it isn't for me.

#4  START PREPARING EARLY!
If I'm having people over on Friday, then the week before I have something on my to-do list everyday to prepare.  For example, I'm cleaning one day, making sure the front porch is ready, getting all caught up on laundry, setting the table for the party, etc.  

#5  PLAN FAVORS!
If you're throwing an event where you'll be gifting favors, then plan those in advance.  When I plan this early, then I can typically catch favors on sale.  Win-win!  

#6  HAVE FUN!
Don't be an Erika and get so stressed about your event that you miss the reason you're having it.  ENJOY IT!!  I'm so much better about this now, but just in case you need to be reminded...have fun!

What about you?  What are some of your tips?  What's an entertaining tip you have?  Please share!  

Thanks for reading today, friends!
XO
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6 comments

Sheaffer {Pinterest Told Me To} said...

Great tips! I used to overdo it too, but I've scaled back as well and it makes things so much more enjoyable!

Narci said...

These are great tips! Love, love, love!!

Elspeth Mizner said...

Such great and helpful tips. simple is always better!
www.elspethsdaybyday.com

nearawayfaraway said...

For adults, always fun to have a special, surprising cocktail.
I love doing a 3-soup party with three mix and match breads. Perfect for a large group and everyone finds something they like.

Mother of 3 said...

Yes, I have found that I can not and should not try to make perfection my goal when hosting. I have to keep reminding myself it's more about comfort and visiting than it is about making sure my house looks like an ad out of a magazine... but I do prepare just about ALL the food myself. I can't give up on all my perfectionistic tendencies!

Unknown said...

Great tips! I was exactly like you. Looking back...I think I had panic attacks before I hosted my first or second holiday parties. I’ve learned to enjoy a little wine before everyone arrives :)
If you’re calm and happy to entertain, everyone will enjoy being there!