Hosting for the Holidays
It's December. All over the city, Torontonians are disappearing under a hailstorm of holiday markets, shopping bags, and party invitations. This month, only one thing is more hectic than simply existing, and that thing is hosting a party.
If you are one of these brave hosts, we've rounded up some tips below that should help you arrange a wonderful and memorable get-together that is affordable, low-stress, and brings you just as much happiness as it brings to your guests.
Food and Drink
- Hosting a potluck cuts down on the time and expense of prepping an entire dinner while letting your guests showcase their cooking skills. If you have guests who aren't comfortable whipping up a dish, you can ask them to bring a special drink or some festive flowers instead.
- Cut down on what you're serving. Don't have time or energy to make a full sit-down dinner? Host a dessert party a little later in the evening. Or throw a build-your-own pizza party where you only have to prep dough and toppings.
- Simplify. If you are making multiple dishes, ensure that they have a manageable ingredient list and prep time. Save the knockout 5-stage labour-intensive side dish for a time when you don't have to worry about 3 other courses. While this list claims it's a list for Thanksgiving recipes, its creative and simple recipes are just as good for the holidays: https://www.epicurious.com/holidays-events/easiest-thanksgiving-recipes-gallery
- Consider using real greenery instead of buying plastic garlands. Not only will it look much more natural, you can even get it for free from the great outdoors! Residents of 2 Secord Avenue and 90 Eastdale have a great resource right in their backyard; Taylor Creek Park's walking and hiking paths provide ample opportunity to find your new décor. For some fun ideas on how to decorate with real greenery, check out this article: https://www.chatelaine.com/home-decor/5-tips-for-decorating-with-fresh-greenery/#gallery/10-tips-for-decorating-with-fresh-greenery/slide-1
- Wrap and set out your Christmas presents early. Before they are unwrapped, they can pull double duty as festive decorations.
- Use the "rule of three", which is that objects tend to look better when placed in groups of three. Try using any existing candles, vases, or other items you have around, and play around with arranging them into groups of 3. A little reorganizing may be all that you need to freshen up your home for the holidays!