14 Tips for Entertaining with effortless ease

1.  Create a simple elegant holiday look using potted flowers, fruit like orange pomanders or orange and cinnamon sticks around a candle or bring in greenery from the outdoors.
Add a few large glass vases (or stock at the thrift store) and fill with ornaments or candy in a color that matches your house decor.

Wreaths and candles make a fabulous table decoration on any table

Wreaths and candles make a fabulous table decoration on any table, spied at my friend Corinna’s

2. Plan your holiday party drink & snack to keep it simple.  Serve Kir Royale  or a regular Kir . Plan to serve something simply divine like smoked salmon on brown bread or shrimp on a stick.  Stock up on ingredients, ready to put together to dazzle your guests in an hour.

3. Throw an impromptu party.   Serve a late afternoon drink with mini sandwiches, or an after dinner drink with champagne & dessert.

Simple mini foods on a stick

4.  Prepare a fire and have a drinks tray nearby with all the trimmings including some nibbles handy in case you are in a festive mood or someone pops in.  Put your favorite holiday music on.

5.  Pick up some home made jams,  special chocolates  or cookies and pretty up  with a bold ribbon trim ready for emergency gifts.

6.  Calendar in 30 minutes a day of alone time in your Le Chic Cocoon, to luxuriate in. No matter what!

7. Buy a box of Christmas crackers and make everyone wear paper crowns, or holiday hats at breakfast or dinner.

8. Write out your Holiday Spirit Philosophy  – what does this holiday mean to you?

9. Happiness can be elusive in the struggle to be festive.  Create a mood and a list of possible activities that keep joy afloat.   Walks outside.  Games.  Reading aloud,  whatever appeals to you.

10.  Schedule in spa time or nap / recover time for everyone

11.  Have everyone throw ideas into a big bowl for activities and take turns

12. Suggest to friends and family that you all embark on an adventure together in lieu of gifts next year and start dreaming of where you could go.  Create a shared vision board

13. Hide the little presents and make it a treasure hunt.

14. Put a pile of fancy soaps in the guest bathroom, some fabulous finger tip towels, a wonderful scented candle to promote a sense of luxury.

What is your favorite trick for holidaying with an elegant ease? Comment below and share, I would love to hear from you.

Joie de vivre,

Jen

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14 Tips for Entertaining with effortless ease — 28 Comments

  1. Number 12 is my favorite and holds special meaning for me. We are on our 2nd Christmas adventure. Last year was a 11 day RV trek through the SW US. This year we are off to a 21 day trip to Australia and already making plans for 2012. Best memories ever…beats presents hands down.

  2. Some lovely tips. I’ve been so turned off by the crass comercialism of Christmas, I’ve backed away from it. Our granddaughter and friend spent the night with us this last weekend and it actually caused me to do a bit of Christmas decorating. Simple things but it brought some festivity to the house. I used to love to decorate at Christmas. Now not so much. I want the Christmas spirit all year long. I like the vase idea. I might do that!

    Julieanne Case
    Always from the heart!

    Reconnecting you to your Original Blueprint, Your Essence, Your Joy| Healing you from the Inside Out |Reconnective Healing | The Reconnection| AgeLoc Skin Care | Pharmanex Supplements

    http://thereconnectivehighway.com

  3. I like tip 14 the combination of these wonderful ingredients make the most divine and luxury xmas environment , plus it is hugely beneficial to the skin if we only use the finest natural essential oils of this soaps

  4. Love your tips, Jennifer! I’ve been very disassociated from Christmas so far this year, but I feel your list starting to inspire me! I love that you mention Kir – haven’t had that for years, and it’s absolutely delicious – and Kir Royale sounds possibly even better! I wonder where you get Creme de Cassis around here? I’m also a big fan of Christmas crackers – a fun English tradition that I have to include at the Christmas dinner table every year!

  5. hmm I am seriously gonna think about envisioning #12 for one of the years to come. For me, I love lighting Chanukah candles, even though (because?) this is not a particularly religion based tradition. Every evening, when I light the candles, I add on an affirmation for what brings me great light. One of my favorite ways to celebrate the season..

  6. You are always warm, welcoming, and elegant, Jennifer! I love looking at your pictures and imagining the atmosphere you create. We don’t entertain much or go to many parties, but we enjoy the atmosphere created by lights and the mood of winter. My husband and I spend a of time at this time of year reviewing the year and talking about what the year has meant. That helps us create the mood we love.

    Judy Stone-Goldman
    The Reflective Writer
    http://www.thereflectivewriter.com
    Personal-Professional Balance Through Writing

    • Dear Judy, so lovely to catch up. Thank you kindly for your lovely compliments! I adore the idea you share: your reminiscing and recollecting the magic of your year past. That sounds like a really special evening. I think I am going to include some of that in my year end festivities.

  7. Great Tips Jen! I want my Le Chic Cocoon! What resonated with me most was keeping it elegant and simple, and impromptu. Plus, of course, anything candlelit and that smells great! Love the photos, too!

  8. I wish you would make yourself an app that I could just carry around with me in my pocket. Then when you saw something you’d just pipe up and tell me what to do or how to use it or how to arrange it. #6 I’m going to do right now- nice hot bath with candles, salts and smells. (However, I think I’ll leave my Jennifer app in another room- your glasses may get fogged up).

    Enjoy your holiday time Jen!

    Candace Davenport
    www.ourlittlebooks.com ~ Little Books with a Big Message

    • LOL Candace you had me smiling! I love the idea of a Jennifer app. Hope you enjoyed your hot bath. Yes cant have my glasses getting fogged up, my appmachination might not work.

      Hope you too have a wonderful holiday!

  9. Christmas Crackers! I knew I had forgotten something! I think I need that nice hot bath with candles and smells right now – and I will.
    Louise Edington
    Breaking Through Frontiers
    http://louiseedington.com

  10. I’m afraid we’re not elegant type of people; just your every day down home types. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy elegance when I go to someone else’s home! And you do present some wonderful ideas, as usual, Jen.

    Susan Berland
    A Picture’s Worth
    http://susan-berland.com

  11. lovely post Jen, its all about creating flow and ease so the host too can enjoy the party…happy holidaze to you, see you in 2012!

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