Event Planning and Entertaining Guide

Wedding Canopy

 

Planning for a holiday or event begins with the host, it's all about personality!  Who you are will be projected and conveyed to your guest whether it is before the preparations, during the party, or the after-party feedback, which may, or may not get back directly to you; but, you get the idea! 

 

Planning Your Holiday Party

Planning The Atmosphere
Planning The Atmosphere

Improvise! Find exactly what you like, and use your space along with the things you have in your possession, to make your party reflect your taste.

Holiday Planning Folder
Holiday Planning Folder

A Holiday Planning Folder can provide what an electronic device cannot. The physical, and the tangible. You can add photos, recipes, magazine articles, along with your own personal notes.

The Internet
The Internet

You will definitely benefit from the vast resources available on the internet. There are even planners you can use to customize your own. Don't forget to print the pages, and add them to your folder.

Keep It Simple
Keep It Simple

Plan your event around your schedule, and if you are in a crunch, keep it simple. A stressed and snappy host will make guest feel unappreciated, and uncomfortable. So decide how much or little you can do.

As For Help
As For Help

Use your resources, this may include the help of all those in your household. The best help is often cooperation!

Catering Your Party
Catering Your Party

Use the food in your freezer first when planning your menu, then check your circular for sale items that you may need, and coupons, or rain checks you may have on hand.

Setting The Mood
Setting The Mood

If you're having an Adult Only party, set the mood and tone for mingling. Use candles and dim lights to help your guest feel more relaxed. It may eliminate the hanging over your shoulder - what's next, guest! Yay!

Adding Cheer
Adding Cheer

Give your environment some Christmas Cheer. Place decorations on end tables, the buffet, on the door, the steps, even in the bathroom!

Who, What, Whey, How, and Why
Who, What, Whey, How, and Why

Planning, hosting, and entertaining can be draining. Your purpose should be to have fun entertaining your guest. Don't leave yourself out of the schedule - plan for your day, your outfit, and your relaxation time.

IMG_2998.JPG
IMG_2998.JPG

Whether it's decorations, or food. Focus on those things that are needed for the party first, and do a check list. This way, you won't get distracted and forget the essentials.

Creating Space
Creating Space

Adding tables can take away from an already small space, so look for other options for setting up a buffet area. A counter in your kitchen can work well if you can clear up space.

The Coffee Bar
The Coffee Bar

A butcher table, or rolling cart can serve as a coffee or dessert bar. Choose an area when there is a plug outlet for a coffee maker, or chocolate melting machine, or fondue pot. Cover or decorate as you like.

Setting The Stage

Buffet Style Parties
Buffet Style Parties

Buffet parties can be simple or elaborate, it all depends on who your guest are, and what the occasion is. This was a child friendly set up that is appropriate for little hands and little people to help themselves.

Tablestape.jpg
Tablestape.jpg

Sit down around the table dinners require that you arrange seating for each guest. It can be formal or informal.

The Kitchen Counter
The Kitchen Counter

This space can be used for all of the food related items. Hot and cold drinks, condiments, beverages, desserts, punch bowl, hot and cold dishes, as well as glasses, plates, napkins, and utensils.

Produce
Produce

I usually purchase pumpkins anytime during the Fall, up to Thanksgiving. recently an ad showing baby spiders in pumpkins surfaced. All my local grocery told me was that pumpkins were in short supply.

Seating Arangement
Seating Arangement

If you have the space, make your arrange roomy enough for people to slip in and out of seating areas.

Fragrances
Fragrances

I absolutely love fragrances that make you sniff endlessly. Place soothing scents in areas where people can get a woof! Use potpourri pots, even plugins are great to use; however, avoid strong scents,

Peeled Tomatoes
Peeled Tomatoes

I don't like the skin on tomatoes that I use for hot s=dishes, so I go ahead and boil, peel, and refrigerate, the day before. Then drain off unwanted water.

Stuffed Fish
Stuffed Fish

Both fish and stuffing need to be prepared ahead. Fish should to be dry before stuffing.

Food Prep
Food Prep

Salads are the easiest to prepare ahead of time, however, I like to separate wet ingredients from dry until the event.

Clean and dry fresh parsley, chop, a
Clean and dry fresh parsley, chop, a

Describe your image here

Cooked Crab Meat
Cooked Crab Meat

I shelled the crab meat, then put it in the chopper. it's a lot of work, so it has to be done ahead of time, then refrigerate.. Remember not to refreeze previously frozen seafood and fish.

Slow Cooker
Slow Cooker

This is another hand. Peel and cut vegetables for soups, stocks, and stews, then let cook over night.

Broth
Broth

Believe it or not, this was my turkey broth. I learned by accident years ago how dangerous this oil is to our bodies. Refrigerate broths and gravies and see how much oil it generates.

The Refrigerator
The Refrigerator

Marinate and Organize refrigerator items together. This could help eliminate leaving out an ingredient.

Organize Ingredients
Organize Ingredients

Label your containers, and indicate what it is for. I may need shrimp for two different dishes, therefor, I need ti identify it. Wash, dry thoroughly, then refrigerate mushrooms

Baking?
Baking?

Organize your baking ingredients, and check the dates to see if there is something you may need to replace. Don't wait till the last moment!

Seasonings
Seasonings

I mix seasonings together in zip lock bags, including marinades, it saves time and space for easy clean up.

Peeled Tomatoes
Peeled Tomatoes

I don't like the skin on tomatoes that I use for hot s=dishes, so I go ahead and boil, peel, and refrigerate, the day before. Then drain off unwanted water.

Chocolate Covered Strawberries
Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Don't wait till the last moment to clean them. I take off the greenery ahead of time then soak, rinse, and dry, the day before. It is always best to do have a preparations day, before you actually cook!

Check Recipe For Ingredients
Check Recipe For Ingredients

Make sure you have what a recipe calls for.

Seafood
Seafood

If frozen, defrost in your refrigerator the day before, then drain. I put the seafood that all take the same amount of time to cook, together in the same bowl. I was making a seafood soup, and I found an easy no fuss way to saute' this quickly.

Homemade Cookie dough
Homemade Cookie dough

I can make one base for the dough, then separate it to make 3 varieties of cookies. I'll then add specific ingredients for each, then refrigerate, or freeze based on when I'm use it. Quick and easy!

Sweet Potatoes
Sweet Potatoes

You can prepare dishes like this, up to this point. After peeling the cooked potatoes, Put all the ingredients in the same dish, then cook thoroughly the day of.

The Rotisserie
The Rotisserie

Love, Love, Love this machine. Look for other appliances to use so that food is still cooking when the oven and microwave is being utilized. Multi-task!

Onions and Peppers
Onions and Peppers

These vegetables can be chopped, minced, blended, even sauteed the day before. do this with all your vegetables, just have your containers ready for storage.

Big Bird
Big Bird

There is no way that if I were catering a party, I would be motivated to both clean and cook the meat, on the same day. "Why not kill two birds with one stone ?" Clean, season, marinate, and refrigerate!

Parchment Paper
Parchment Paper

If you are baking cookies, put this on your list, especially if you are making dozens, it will save you valuable time. No one wants to be in the kitchen longer than they need to be!

Loaded Pizza
Loaded Pizza

This would make a great appetizer at the party. Just fill it with meats and vegetables. After you cook it, let it cool, then cut i to squares. this can be cooked ahead and refrigerated, and heated the day of!

Ms. Claire
Ms. Claire

She is the life of the party. Why not bring a conversation piece to your next gathering. it is sure to break the ice in a cold, and straight-laced environment. It will have people relaxing in no time!