Holiday Entertaining—Hosting an Open House

Holiday Entertaining—Hosting an Open House

Holiday Entertaining—Hosting an Open House

The holidays always stimulate the desire to connect with people in my life that I have been meaning to spend time with all year long. A holiday open house is a drop-in event and is the perfect solution to have family, friends, co-workers and neighbors over for an afternoon of good food and warm hospitality. An open house gives your guests the option of choosing a time in the afternoon that fits into their busy holiday schedule and gives you the opportunity to catch up with many near and dear in one casual event.

Follow these guidelines for the easiest and most delicious open house yet! Happy Holidays!

  • Send your paper invitations 3-4 weeks in advance as social calendars around the holidays can fill up fast. Or send an e-vite via the internet. Guests can get all the information to your open house including a map to your home and can also RSVP online.
  • Give a start and finish time on the invitations; usually 4-6 hours. If inviting a large number of guests, stagger the times on the invitations, i.e., half of the invitations-2-5 pm, the other half – 3-6 pm.
  • Set up your Lifetime Fold-in-Half Adjustable-Height Table and decorate with this simple theme: Use a white tablecloth and red velvet ribbon. Make a large bow with streamers and set it on top a purchased swag of fresh, dark greens with red winter berries on the table. Tie utensils wrapped in white napkins with the red velvet ribbon. Place hurricanes with white candles wrapped in a length of the ribbon, being mindful of where they are placed for safety.
  • Offer plenty of finger foods such as cheese platters, crudités with dip and spiced nuts. Make a bowl of punch and have bottled water, coffee or tea.
  • Create a fuss-free menu by serving make-ahead recipes. Set out small serving dishes and replenish between guests for a fresh looking buffet. Save time by filling in your menu with some purchased items. Serve Christmas cookies on a tiered plate.
  • Use warming trays and slow-cookers. Allow food sit out for no more than 2 hours.
  • Set a casual, festive mood with holiday music such as Noel by Josh Grobin or A Charlie Brown Christmas by Vince Guaraldi (jazz). For comfort, have plenty of Lifetime Folding Chairs for guests to sit on.

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