Five tips to entertain this winter
December 31, 2018 | 5:40 PM
by Courtesy of Brandpoint

Entertaining indoors during the chilly winter months can be a fantastic way to brighten up those long, dark evenings. Inviting a few friends over — or a lot — doesn’t have to be a difficult challenge, even for first-time hosts. Here are a few tips for easy and stress-less entertaining.

1 Make the time to clean your home or apartment at least one day ahead, then set the table and spruce up your home with decorations the night before your event. This leaves you with one less thing to worry about on the big day.

2 Whether you’re hosting a fancy sit-down dinner, casual get-together or game-day festivities, stock up on ice and easy-to-fix drinks so you won’t be tied to bartender duty when you could be enjoying the company of your guests. The latest kitchen appliances can help you prep.

3 Prep food ahead of time as much as you can, and plan to heat up dishes on the day of the party.

4 Delegate what you can. If your guests ask, “What can I bring?” — don’t be shy about asking for help. If you’re light on beverages, request that they pick up for you. If desserts aren’t your strong suit, ask if they can share a favourite treat. Most party-goers feel good about contributing to the event. Make sure to highlight their contributions and thank them when you serve their tasty dessert.

5 Cater to all the senses. Not only should you set a pretty table, prepare delicious food and put on some upbeat background music you know your guests will enjoy, but the aromas you create will also set the mood for a successful soiree! If you don’t have a yummy smelling dish cooking away on the stove-top on party day, consider simmering a pot of water with cinnamon sticks, nutmeg and cloves for a while, or use scented candles or essential oils to enhance your party environment. It’s the sensory details that help set the right tone for your entire event.

With just enough planning, helpful tools and smart technology at your disposal, hosting a party or dinner can be easy as well as fun. You can turn any winter gathering, whether casual or formal, into a relaxing and enjoyable event not just for your guests, but for you as well.

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