This year Christmas will look a little different for many families, with a few more guests around the dinner table. Maybe more celebrations and more gatherings are part of your holiday plans. But the hustle and bustle of the season leads to stress. And we’ve all had enough of that to last many years!
Remember when planning your celebrations to keep it simple but still plentiful, cost-efficient but celebratory, safe but social. Here are a few entertaining tips to keep your holiday season extra special.
Look for shopping venues that don’t have you running around town to get all the fixings and trimmings.
“Being able to do your grocery shopping and at the same time pick up bakery items, décor, even hostess gifts goes a long way to easing stress,” says Save on Foods – Guildford Store Manager Stephanie Benbow. “Instead of spending time trying to collect everything you need for your event, you can make one stop and get it all done.”
Fun for Families
“Potluck brings everyone together to share their holiday favourites,” says Benbow. “You can make it fun for families by involving children in the selection of dishes. Potlucks bring people together and lessen the load on the host.”
Consider serving stations with different themes. Perhaps multicultural dishes, beverage and dessert stations, and appetizers. The possibilities are endless.
If you are looking for something more intimate and personal, a sit-down meal may be more appropriate. But that doesn’t mean it needs to be more work, says Benbow.
“Look for a store that has pre-set meals you can order ahead of time,” she says.
Save on Foods recently launched Christmas dinners that you can order ahead of time. Pre-order and have them ready to pick up any time before Christmas – a great way to take the stress out of entertaining.
Look for a variety of cheeses and meats to compliment the table. These are no-cook and fast to prepare, allowing more time for the actual meal. If you are looking for more variety, try prepared appetizers. Things like bacon-wrapped scallops or mini quiches are quick in the oven but have a huge impact, says Benbow.
“Charcuterie boards, holiday cheese and deli platters, holiday appies, there are so many delicious ready-made choices,” says Benbow.
Christmas wouldn’t be complete without desserts. Check out in-store prepared sweets, pies and festive cakes. Easy and delicious.
Sometimes less is more. Consider Christmas planters which are great as a hostess gift or centrepiece on your table. They are also excellent gifts for guests who cannot attend or are still unsure about larger gatherings.
“With Save on Foods, you can order flowers or planters anywhere in Western Canada that we have a store and have them delivered to people that you can’t be with this holiday season,” says Benbow. They also have small apartment-sized or tabletop trees that make a great addition, keeping things simple and festive.
Consider picking up inexpensive containers that you can send home with guests with leftovers. You can also consider a cookie swap and have all your guests bring their favourite homemade holiday cookies. Easy dessert, plus everyone can fill their containers for their holidays.