Take Time To Enjoy the Season
With all of this celebrating, we tend to wear ourselves out pretty quickly. Already this past weekend, I saw people fighting over a parking space. How ridiculous did that look? And the season has barely begun. So make every attempt to keep it in perspective. Nothing has to be perfect - really. If you don't have the chance to totally transform each gift into a beautiful package, or make a 5 course meal, it is ok.
Especially this time of year, plan ahead, make those lists, organize your meals and shopping trips and trips to stores that are clustered together. Ask yourself- "how can I make this easier on myself?" each time you are faced with a holiday project. Make a list of what are the most important things for you to do, top to bottom, and then decide what gets done and what will not be done this year. Like those Christmas cards - for me, the list does get smaller because for whatever reason, that is not something I really enjoy doing. So I gave myself permission to cut back, and hope that my friends will understand. It is a little relief which gives me more time to spend on more pleasurable activities. So go ahead - make your own list and give yourself and your family a little more time to enjoy what this season is all about.
Elegant and Simple Table Decorations
There are two themes that I enjoy most at the holidays- one is sparkle and the other is natural. That almost seems like they are opposed to each other, but enjoy both, depending upon the mood you are in. To start choose a theme and choose your color scheme. For example, I love all sliver, or sliver and blue, or red, red, red. You might also enjoy different shades of green with gold. Experiment- choose what make you happy.
For sparkle, I love lots of glass balls of different sizes and textures. (Target is a great place to find lots of these at great prices.) You can also buy silk flowers dusted with glitter, or even pine cones that are sprayed gold or silver.
For natural, if you have a yard with trees, go clip evergreen branches, holly branches, and whatever else looks like winter. Or buy a variety of greens. Yesterday I bought some plain fresh wreaths and went into the yard and cut some juniper branches to tuck in the wreaths. Add bright ribbons and balls that are glittery and you have a lovely and inexpensive wreath. It only took about 15 minutes to finish these.
Fill a vase with assorted nuts in their shells and add some branches and ribbons.
For your centerpiece, fill smaller vases with fresh cranberries and water and add red and white roses, carnations, and lilies, and some evergreen stems for a really beautiful arrangement.
GET CREATIVE WITH THEMES:
Choose a candy-cane theme. Use red and white flowers, with candy canes hanging from the rim of the vase. Use candy canes as place cards. Have a white tablecloth with a red runner. Tie red and white ribbon on napkins.
Ribbons are a wonderful way to decorate. Choose a color and go from there. Add ribbons to a chandelier and hang gold or silver snowflakes for a festive look.
You can choose a jingle bell theme- use silver as the main color, add bells and little sleighs on the table to your centerpiece, or add bells to your place cards. Silver stars are also a really nice selection with the bells.
Blue and white or blue and silver are delightful for the season. Dress the table with a white tablecloth, use a beautiful blue runner, perhaps in an organza that you can get from the fabric store. Use silver candles or silver menorah, or silver snowflakes. Tie shiny silver ribbons around napkins. White flowers such as lilies or white roses mixed with silver spray are a very elegant look.
SOUNDS AND AROMAS:
The holidays are about not just the presentation, but also about feeding the other senses. Be sure to have some favorite music playing, especially while wrapping gifts. Light some scented candles, put a pot of water filled with cinnamon sticks, orange peels and cloves. Simmer on low - just be careful the water does not boil out. These will add to your enjoyment and, if you let it, will help to restore some calmness everyone.
So these are just some ideas. Pick something that makes you happy and go from there. BE creative - get the kids involved and have fun.
Related Tags: holiday, christmas, season, chanukah, recipe, organize, table decorations, decorate, creative, aroma, simple
Marybeth Gregg has been cooking, entertaining and giving cooking advice for almost 20 years. She is well-known for her wonderful cuisine and great parties and started her successful cooking school four years ago. She has attended cooking schools in Chicago, Philadelphia and has a Certificate of Completion from the French Culinary Institute in New York. She lives in central New Jersey and has been featured in the Newark Star Ledger, The Courier News, The Asbury Park Press, The Coast Star, and Kansas City Star newspapers.
Prior to her establishing her cooking school in New Jersey, Marybeth was a director of Training and Development and Executive Coach for Fortune 50 Companies. She currently still uses these skills and experiences in her Team Building and Cooking programs for teams. Your Article Search Directory : Find in Articles
Recent articles in this category:
- Feel Refresh With Durable Sports Bottle
Almost every person in this world is addicted to sports. Whether it is an indoor or outdoor sport, e
- Types and Designs of Cookie Cutters
Cookies are everyone's favorite snack. No matter what time of day, it seems that it becomes the ulti
- Fun Cookie Treats For Everyone
There are some foods that most people don't outgrow or take off their favorites list even after deca
- How To Have The Perfect Halloween Party
Traditionally more popular in America, over the past 10 years Halloween has wormed its way into Brit
- Come and Get It, The Pizza is Here
If one were to ask two different people what they wanted for fast food, more than likely one of them
- The Perky Healthy Benefits Of Tea
A sip in the morning, while reading your newspaper just makes your day complete. Most people's under
- 3 Key Factors of a Good Bar
The process of elimination combined with a list of "pros" and "cons" is used by many people to make
- Remembering Those Favourite Sweets From Our Youth
It's safe to say that quality never goes out of fashion and just as those favourite Top 40 hits of y
- Top 5 American Sweets Of All Time
America is famous for producing many things, from fantastic films through entertaining sports to glo
- Recommendations For Creating Extraordinary Biryani
Good biryani is all over the place, but fantastic biryani can be quite tough to come across. Too man
Most viewed articles in this category:
- Spices Thai Food Galangal, Nutmeg Tree And Krachai
Galangal Scientific name:Alpinia galangal (L.) Willd. Family:ZINGIBERACEAE Vernacular name:Kha Gala
- The Little Things in Life: Food Presentation
While it may seem silly, the appearance of a little radish rose on my salad plate has the power to t
- Popular Malaysian Fruits
Malaysian fruits are becoming very popular with an increasing number of people. Some of the more pop
- Not The Usual Super Bowl Theme Party . . . Celebrate Backwards Day Instead!
While it seems that 99% of the United States (OK, the world) plans to either throw or attend a Super
- How Long Should I Let My Bread Rise
It depends. The best way to tell if the dough has risen enough is not by time-though it helps to se
- Buffalo Wing Sauce Recipe
The simple ingredients used are ketchup, warm honey, lemon's juice, butter, Louisiana sauce, white v
- A Bakers Guide To Chocolate
What's the difference between bittersweet chocolate and semisweet chocolate? Can I use Dutch cocoa i
- Red Grapes Are Not Just For Jelly!
As a continuation to, "White Grapes are as Different as Apples and Oranges," red grapes are very muc
- High Altitude Breads
Can you make bread and buns in the mountains? We got a call from California this week, "I can make
- Tips For Great Pizzas
A pizza made at home should be better than a commercial pizza. You get it fresh from the oven made w