Tips to Make Entertaining at Home Easy

Women having champagne at a home party

Even the most introverted person occasionally wants company, but having people over is its own special kind of stress. What do you do? How do you set things up? Do you even have all you need to do this? How long will it last? What if unexpected people show up? These and countless other question tend to dominate any would-be host or hostess the moment they start thinking about planning a get-together. OROGOLD fully acknowledges that these are all very valid questions to ask. You have to consider a number of things before actually putting a plan into motion, but they shouldn’t prevent you from trying in the first place. To help cut the stress out of getting people together for a special occasion or “just because”, here are a few tips to ease the pains of entertaining at home.

Issue Your Invites
You can take a lot of the stress out of numbers simply by personally issuing invitations instead of simply saying you’re having a gathering and telling people to pass it along. This can work well in smaller social groups, but the larger they get the more likely it is to spiral out of control. Consider your social circle when issuing invitations though. Are they the sort that would like a thematic invitation card or are they the kind who just want a friendly chat and a verbal invitation? Plan for a few extra people regardless of the method you choose for inviting people to your gathering. There will likely always be one or two unexpected guests at a gathering in all but the smallest of social groups. You’ll probably already know them and they’ll simply be coming along with a friend who didn’t know if they could bring a mutual friend or not.

Plan Ahead
Part of the stress about numbers is due to the need to know that you have enough food to entertain properly. OROGOLD suggests preparing a meal that you can slow-cook the day of the gathering or that you can cook ahead of time and simply warm again when it is the appropriate time. A sufficiently large meal like this means you can devote more time to your guests without feeling rude and that you’re ready for the unexpected. You can even do the same with any desserts you have prepared that have predetermined portions. Keep them arranged and ready for bringing out after the meal for anyone who wants them. It reduces the hassle and, once again, keeps you active and engaged with your guests rather than away from them. Everyone is there to appreciate each other’s company after all.

Fall decorations.

Decorate
The time of year often governs why a gathering is happening due to the popularity of holiday parties. You can use this to your advantage. A few clever accents here and there can transform a space into something perfect for a seasonal party. By contrast, you can opt for a more timeless approach with floral arrangements or candles offering the main aesthetic. An important point to make is that you shouldn’t forget that serving pieces for appetizers can be just as much a part of the decoration as aesthetic only pieces. A well-prepared plate of appetizers make an excellent centerpiece for the casual center of a gathering and make the space instantly inviting. It also gives people something to snack on while they pass the time until the main meal.

Entertaining doesn’t have to be a nightmare of planning that makes you constantly doubt your own capabilities. You’ll likely find it one of the most rewarding things you’ve done when it all comes together. Just remember that everyone has felt that stress before and that you can get past it. Try remembering these few tips from OROGOLD and you may even manage to stop feeling stressed before the doorbell first rings. There are no promises on whether it will help deal with that last minute panic when you have to open the door for your first guests though.

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SPRING ENTERTAINING: TEN QUICK TIPS

Time to bring out color and other decor elements for Spring.

Finally the snow has thawed and its time to start thinking about bringing out your bright colors and showing off for some spring entertaining. Whether you like hosting dinner parties, tea time or just want a fun day with the girls, we have the best tips, whether you’re looking for cooking ideas or wondering how to decorate.

 OROGOLD reviews the top ten suggestions for spring entertaining:

 -Flowers are blooming again, so it’s a great time to take advantage of them in your entertaining. Fill up vases full of fresh daffodils, use china decorated with flowers or, if you are feeling risky in the kitchen, brighten up a salad by using a salad mix with flower petals. Don’t use too many, though, or your guests might not have a reaction of awe but instead with sneezes due to allergies.

-As spring brings back the sunshine, don’t be afraid to bring back a little more color into your table. Bright pinks and light yellows can add a pop to your table. If you like pastels, pick one to pair with your neutrals to make your table pop such as a sky blue or a mint green. Restrain yourself from using all the colors of the rainbow though, or else you might risk your table looking like an Easter basket exploded.

-Take advantage of seasonal vegetables and fruits. Spring welcomes bright green leaves as well as artichokes, asparagus, broccoli and peas. Check out your local farmer’s market to see what they’re offering in terms of fresh spring vegetables and plan your dishes around them.Fresh flavors and the grill are perfect for the summer

-Eggs are a staple for spring holidays, but they don’t have to be multicolored to find a way into your entertaining. Using recipes with eggs can add additional protein as well as some bright color, such as doing sunny-side up eggs with oven-roasted asparagus, a traditional Tuscan dish. If you choose to do a deviled egg make sure that the filling is more creative than the traditional mashed yolk or else you may risk boring your guests.

-When it comes to cocktails, fruity flavors are always best for springtime. Steer clear of winter’s darker liquors and opt for lighter flavors to pair with lemonade or orange juice. If you’re more of a wine person, stay away from dark full-bodied wines like Syrah and Shiraz and opt for a sangria, where you can pair your favorite fruits and juices (and sometimes even sherbet) with a light red or even white wine.

-As the weather begins to warm up, don’t be afraid to bring out dishes that are served at cooler temperatures. Pasta salads topped with light vinaigrette, chilled lemon bars and even fish ceviche are perfect dishes to bring out with the change of weather. They have lighter flavors that allow them to shine in the springtime.

-When you’re opting to do a tea time in honor of the spring, spice up the traditional English-style tea with bright fruit flavored teas or heavenly rooibos, or a red tea. Instead of going for the traditional sandwiches, feel free to use some more inventive ingredients in your crust less confections, such as red peppers or goat cheese instead of basic cucumbers and cream cheese.Fun canapes with unique ingredients

-Don’t get too carried away with decorations. Tea lights, flowers, streamers, balloons and table runners can all be beautiful on an individual basis. However, if you pair all these things together in your table setup it may look like you’re opening up a party store rather than hosting a party. When it comes to décor, less is always more.

-If it’s warm enough to grill, heat it up, but leave the steaks in the freezer. Fish like cod and tilapia are great options for the grill. They have a lighter, fresher flavor, don’t take a lot of time to cook and are very simple to season. Shrimp is also a great springtime option, as they are light and can be given flavor with just some salt and a squeeze of lemon juice. If it’s too cold, not to worry — these fish can also be baked in the oven with just as delicious results.

-When the party is so big that you’re afraid you may lose your head, look for ways to make life easier in either cleanup or setup. Plastic plates and silverware now come in varieties that are elegant while providing easy cleanup for you. Preparing salads ahead of time can allow you to give more thought to décor. These suggestions are particularly good for spring entertaining, as you can take the party outside to a less formal setting than a traditional dining room table.

We hope our tips will make all your spring entertaining a hit. Let us know which tips were your favorite!