Celebrate the holidays in many ways by hosting fun parties that bring together friends and family. Invite guests for an evening of tree trimming, gift exchanging and showing off a favorite holiday sweater. You can plan menus that include winter favorites and sweet treats.
Tree Trimming and Dining
Have guests make an ornament for your Christmas tree using supplies found at most craft shops. To make simple wooden ornaments, find ribbon in holiday colors for hanging and:
· Small, unfinished wooden shapes (most craft stores have many shapes to choose from)
· Seasonal colored chalkboard paint
Guests can create a special message or picture on their wooden shape and add it to your tree after enjoying a dish made for cold winter evenings.
Serve Taste of Home’s Chicken & Egg Noodle Casserole. Preparation and cook time make this casserole an easy, homey dish to serve while trimming the tree.
To add sweet warmth to your tree trimming party, serve Hot Buttered Rum. Make the batter well before the guests come and bring it to room temperature before mixing drinks. Serve the drinks in warmed mugs and toast the gift-giving season.
Bad Gifts and Prime Rib
Have a Christmas cast-off gift exchange party. A cache of un-wanted gifts lies hidden in every garage or closet. Maybe a coworker gave you a Chia Pet or a nephew gifted you a singing bass last Christmas. Instead of letting them gather dust or throwing them in the trash, wrap them and throw a re-gifting party.
Have guests write their names on slips of paper, put the slips in a hat and then pass the hat. Everyone draws a name and exchanges gifts with that person. Afterward, trade away gifts to those who want what you don’t want.
Highlight your party by serving Serious Eats Perfect Prime Rib with Red Wine Jus. Guests will forget the gifts and head for the dinner table when the prime rib comes out. Keep the beef the center of attention by serving simple sides like baked asparagus and roasted garlic potatoes.
Where Did You Find That Awful Sweater?
If you were lucky enough to get an ugly sweater at a cast-off gift party, make the best of it by throwing an ugly sweater party. Have prizes, like gift cards to a near-by store or coffee shop, ready for the top two or three ugliest entries.
Serve sugar cookies shaped like sweaters and let them out for decorations, too. Use white frosting mixed with food coloring to make horrible color combinations and clashing patterns. Try the Soft Cut-Out Sugar Cookiesrecipe on Sally’s Baking Addiction website.
Make Rachel Ray’s Mini Corn Dogs to complement the ugly Christmas sweaters and cookies. Guests can eat them with their hands and easily dip them in mustard, ketchup or ranch. You will find the little corn dogs simple to make so you don’t miss any of the party.
Try these fun holiday entertaining ideas and add your own spin to the party themes and recipes. Mix old traditions with new and make the holidays uniquely yours.