How to : Throw the PERFECT Holiday Gathering

The menu, flatware, stemware, linens, decor, music....there are so many elements to throwing the dinner party of your dreams, and the holidays can add some extra pressure. Mid-November, it all seems so fun & simple: You've volunteered to host Christmas dinner. Your Pinterest is literally exploding with ideas, recipe inspiration is piling up, and the box of Christmas decorations has been unearthed from the depths of the basement. 

And then December 21st hits...the free range, organic turkey has been backordered, every store in an 10 mile radius is sold out of frozen cranberries, and you don't have enough forks. Classic. 

Deep breaths! We've got you covered. The menu : simple yet impressive. The table : Instagram worthy, yet low budget. The gift list : practical and meaningful. Follow our guide to the perfect holiday gathering, and you will dazzle your guests without a single explosive mental breakdown.

Most importantly...

THE MENU

Designed to veer away from the traditional while still evoking those "comfort food" feelings, this menu is full of rich, contrasting flavours & healthy, seasonal ingredients.

TO BEGIN

Carrot & Cardamom Soup

Pear & Fennel Salad w/ Fresh Frisee

MAIN EVENT

Cast Iron Roasted Cauliflower w/ Radishes & Herbs

Braised Chicken w/ Roasted Winter Squash & Mustard Greens

GRAND FINALE

Ginger Molasses Bundt Cake 

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THE TABLE

The formula for creating a swoon-worthy, budget friendly holiday tablescape lies in some tips from our favourites, Rook & Rose and Lyndsey Eden

Arrange Your Own Holiday Centrepiece, with Rook & Rose

5 Holiday Table Setting Tips w/ Lyndsey Eden

 

THE VIBES

In the spirit of a non-traditional (yet sentimental!) holiday, we've put together a warm, happy, soulful playlist that has those Christmas-y vibes without a single "Let it Snow".

Your (non-traditional) Holiday Gathering Playlist

 

TURN THE LIGHTS DOWN LOW - for the ULTIMATE cozy vibes, bring the lights down and light allllll the candles! 

 

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MEANINGFUL GIFT GIVING

Gift giving is an art. How do you show someone you care without contributing to the landfill or the dreaded "re-gifting" circuit? Homemade gifts really are the best option (like this recipe for Candied Ginger), or follow the three golden rules of Meaningful Gift Giving - find them here!

Candied Ginger Recipe

A Guide to Meaningful Gift Giving

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A MERRY CHRISTMAS & A HEALTHY NEW YEAR

And of course you can't be the hostess with the most-est if you're exhausted, stressed, and queasy! Keeping up with healthy habits over this next week will ensure that your dinner party is as fun for you as it is for your guests. No need to stress! Don't take on too much, and stay mindful. Our good friend and Nutritional Therapy Practitioner Ellie Shortt gives you some tips on staying well through the season of over-indulgence here:

How To : Have a Happy & Healthy Holiday w/Ellie Shortt

We want to say thank-you, and wish you all the happiest, healthiest & love-filled holiday season! Happy hosting!

Kayla Sorley