Monday, December 13, 2010

The Efficient Hostess

I may be efficient but recently I have been neglectful. Of you. And of this blog. I am sorry.

It's hard to believe Christmas is literally around the corner. We head home to Colorado this Saturday and as I pack the boys' things, I can't help but wonder where did 2010 disappear to? Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or what have you, December is a busy and hectic time for all.

This last weekend was a grand slam hit of events including but not limited to: birthday party, home improvements, cooking, hosting a baby shower, Christmas party, and a multitude of errands. What I want to touch on this morning is how to make being a hostess a snap for any event.

Let me lay the ground rules of true efficiency for you:

1. Planning
2. Time Management
3. Smart Choices (Just like I tell me five year old to make)

My mother is always telling me, "Make it easy on yourself" and for this baby shower this past weekend that's exactly what I did! Normally, I would spend countless hours creating from scratch every detail from food to decor. Knowing the weekend that lay ahead, I tried to optimize my time and the shower experience for everyone. My menu was simple since the shower was at one o'clock:

- Cinnamon Cider
- Cranberry Fizz Punch
- veggie tray with spinach dip (Sam's club items secretly arranged on one of my fab serving dishes)
- stuffed mushrooms (super easy and always a hit!)
3 cartons large whole mushrooms
3 1lb packages sausage (I used chicken sausage this time)
1 tub grated Parmesan
De-stem, wash, and dry mushrooms. Stuff with sausage. Place on foil lined baking sheet. Sprinkle generously with Parmesan and bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.
- spanikopita (Sam's baby and since I have made these before I knew that wasn't happening this weekend)
- brie wheel with blueberry preserves (amended menu item, brie en croute was planned but had phyllo dough issues)
- hummus and pita chips (you guessed it, Sam's)
- white on white cupcakes with butter cream frosting decorated with pearlized pink sprinkles by the best husband ever. (this will blow your mind... 30 cupcakes for $13 at Sam's)

So there you have it. Throw a white table cloth down, some coordinating colored basket filler- the krinkly paper strips-, thank you notes for guests to write their name on address on for the guest of honor in a silver platter, and a homemade cupcake tower also constructed by the best husband ever. Don't forget the balloons, they make any occasion more fun!

My point is ladies, you can make this happen. There was a time, not so very long ago, where I would have mentally berated myself for purchasing all of those items rather than making them. But I have to tell you, not anymore. There is a time for making it easy and December is that time! My family did not have to suffer with pre-shower Mom and the friend I was honoring with the shower seemed to truly enjoy it! What more could you ask for? So, with the race to January 1st in full swing, do yourself a favor and be smart with your time and your choices. Holidays are for celebrating so let's get on with that part, shall we?

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