Preparing for Holiday Entertaining

holiday entertainingFor many women, the task of getting prepared and hosting a fabulous holiday celebration seems insurmountable especially celebrations for large families. Still, other women seem to have it all together. We asked pastor’s wife, mother of four and several “adopted” kids, Kelley Barker, what her secret is to preparing for holiday celebrations.

Barker says she has people in her home from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, so she begins the entertaining process in early October, pacing herself in her preparations and relying heavily on her calendar. “I like to begin baking with my kiddos several weeks prior to the holidays or looking for clearance dessert items to freeze, then this is one less thing I am rushed to do the week of Christmas,” Barker said.

Decorating is a big ordeal for the Barker family and it all begins on Black Friday and lasts several days as she decorates the home with Christmas trees and holiday décor. “Once I have the house decorated, I definitely feel so much relief and I know that I am ready for guests,” Barker said.

Cleaning projects are next on the list (with the help of family) and begin weeks prior to the holidays. She plans menus a few weeks prior, which Barker said is a great help when grocery shopping minimizing last minute visits. “If I can make any entrees or side dishes prior and freeze them that really is beneficial to me and is a great time saver.”

We may not all have-it-together like Barker who insists she still gets stressed out and many times falls behind like anyone else! we can definitely borrow some tips for our own holiday celebrations.

Are you a good guest?

After someone has worked hard to prepare a holiday celebration, the last thing we want is to be a bad guest. So, if you are invited to a holiday celebration, what can you do to be a good guest? Kim Arnos, Senior Loan Officer at Ruoff Mortgage, entertains regularly and offers the following suggestions on how to be a good guest.

  • Be on time.
  • Sample each dish (unless allergic, of course).
  • Be thankful and complimentary.
  • Offer to help clean up.

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