Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Undomestic Goddess Guide to Successful Holiday Entertaining

Subtitle: "Half-Birthdays and Homicidal Thoughts"


One of the trickiest bits of being a stay-at-home-mom, trophy wife sort is the lack of feedback. There are no job evaluations like there were back in my pre-retirement days; short of your kid ending up in juvi or Julliard, there aren't too many external markers to give you a sense of how well you're doing running your roost.

Someone went & had a half-birthday while I was busy paying attention to Christmas. How are we at 18 months already, how???
It may be shallow, but I'm enough of a Type A Minus retired lawyer type to miss that feeling of gold-star accomplishment. Therefore, I'm returning from my holiday hiatus to bring you my *highly scientific*, three-step guide to knowing your first time doing the holiday hosting - or mine, at any rate - was (I think?) (I hope?) a success:

With thanks to the lovely & talented Lulu McGee, from whom Santa bought this precious tee.

Step 1: Accept help from your guests


Hailing from a tribe of introverts as I do, I didn't grow up with much in-home entertaining. Somehow I'd picked up the idea that a host/hostess was obligated to cook ALL of the food while keeping an immaculately clean house, providing wildly witty repartee, looking like a "Vogue" ad, and keeping an eye on the wee CEO.

(Yeah, I have no idea where that came from either.)

Here's what actually happened: the grandparents kept an eye on Master P while I shuffled around in my (most stylish/clean!) flannel PJs, stressing about the apple pie; everyone involved magically appeared with a side dish or dessert and kindly encouraged me to breathe already. The pie and I both survived - as did everyone who ate the former, to my great surprise.

Step 2: Limit thoughts of familial homicide to less than five


The face of innocence, after yet another hit on the toddler nativity set.
I can count the number of murder plots I may have hatched towards Anonymous Relatives on one hand. One hand, after four days, five house guests, and at least six passive-aggressive swipes about the state of my kitchen! Feel free to let the Nobel Peace Prize committee know where to find me.

Step 3: Beg, borrow, or steal some kids if you can




At the risk of sounding insufferably Smug Mummy - though of course this applies if you have a niece or nephew, dog, cat, or secret love child-type handy - Christmas is just a whole 'nuther level of enjoyable with littles around. It just is. I want to find a sarcastic remark here to cut the sugar level of that statement, but . . . but . . . I can't. It's just better.

With the last of our house guests just having left today, I'm signing off now to sit very still. That is, until tomorrow, when someone - ahem, Anonymous Husband - thought it would be a good idea to invite friends over for dinner. And then there's New Year's Eve, which we're hosting too.

Excuse me while I go cry in the leftover mashed potatoes.

3 comments:

The English Preppy said...

Good tips! I just wish I hosted the type of guests who volunteered - even to serve their own wine? ;) Cute pic of you and the little man! :)

Amy @ Forever 29 said...

Y'all are some hosting fools! I'm already having night terrors about hosting half of Mr.'s family next year because his sister is getting married in ATL on Dec 29th. Yay for no travel, but it will be intense. (Cat loving Aunt included...and she better leave her cats at home)

Perfectly Imperfect said...

I'm sure your spread was amazing!! I also could not agree more; Christmas is WAY better with littles around. Now if my family would just bring more around!!

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