Dec
   22

 

There are only two hours before the guests arrive, and you still haven’t prepared the appetizers. Don’t resort to take out just yet! If you find yourself strapped for time with no prepared meals in sight, here are three quick and easy dishes you can serve in less than an hour!
 
Appetizers in a Flash
 


 
I’m all for easy-to-assemble food — a delicious cheese platter, candied nuts, and good quality crackers. Ina Garten’s Roasted Shrimp Cocktail takes only a short time to make and is a fun twist on the standard recipe. Place them in beautiful servers and trays to make them more presentable. After all, presentation is half the battle when it comes to food that’s easy to prepare. Serve them buffet-style and let your guests help themselves.
 
Main Dish Served at Room Temperature
 
For the main dish, a quick honey spiraled ham will do the trick. Simply purchase a pre-cooked ham with a honey glaze, serve it at room temperature with gourmet mustard, and you’re all set.
 
French Green Bean Salad
 


 
This boiled green bean salad offers the right amount of crunch and is a great side for your ham. It only takes about 30 minutes to make when you use this recipe from Chow.com.
 
Caramel Fondue
 


 
Even though you’re on a time crunch, your dessert can still be snazzy. Peel and slice the fruits in your pantry to be served with salted caramel dip — an easy fruit and caramel fondue. And if you have a variety of fruits available, all the better!
 
Impress your guests with a delicious meal prepared in half an hour! And if you’re looking for party themes to do, you can check out our Mexican-themed party guide or awards viewing party ideas!


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  Dec
   21

 

Decorating with berries is an easy and organic way to counter the bleakness of cold winter months. Whether blue, red, or purple, winter berries add a warm and cozy feeling to your home. Here are some useful tips on how to use berries to spruce up your home decorations this winter.

Add Color to Doors and Entryways.

Add a dash of color to your entryways by utilizing berries
Flocked White Fir Wreath with a dash of red berries. Photo by Caroline Green

I used a Flocked White Fir Wreath, added berries to it, and placed it on my side door. The berries went very well with the decorated trees, along with the bench that I painted. Another way to use them is to fill galvanized buckets with American Bittersweet berries; their bright orange-yellow color should immediately make any entryway more inviting.
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  Dec
   20

 

Even if you’re a meticulous shopper, there’s always somebody who might have gotten left off your Christmas list. Whether you forgot or simply didn’t have more time to shop, you can still give out last-minute gifts with your friends and family being none the wiser. Complete your list with these last minute Christmas gift ideas that don’t say last minute!
 
Visit Amazon
 
Amazon is my true go-to for last-minute Christmas gifts. You can get anything — electronics, accessories, clothes — in just a few clicks of a button. Not only that, the delivery service saves you from crowded shopping malls with other last-minute shoppers.
 
Choose Books
 


I love giving away books, especially favorite books I’m reading or have read before. Cookbooks, home decor books, spy thrillers, the latest best-sellers, or classic Christmas books are all perfect last-minute Christmas gifts, and your friends won’t even notice that you forgot to include them on your list!

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  Dec
   18

 

Who says artificial Christmas wreaths and garlands have to be confined to doors and banisters? It would be wonderful to have these holiday decorations in any room of your home this Christmas.

I particularly like Christmas Tree Market’s pre-lit Kennedy Fir Wreath and Garland, because they complement the beauty of my tree, also a Kennedy Fir. I also love how they cast a soft glow over the areas where they’re placed on the nights leading up to Christmas.

Here are some ideas for spreading holiday cheer all around your home using wreaths and garlands.

Add Character to the Entryway

Artificial Christmas wreaths make for festive entryways.
My festive side door decked in red.

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  Dec
   17

 
Incorporate elegance into your rustic dining table by creating an amazing tablescape.

As you gather family and friends around the dining table this holiday, welcome them with a simple yet beautiful tablescape. In my case, I pulled inspiration from my Christmas tree and mantle decor.
In fact, pulling in bits of gold and earth tones to create my tablescape turned out to be quick and easy. Here are some ideas for creating a tablescape that will not only amaze your guests, but also give your dining area a holiday boost.
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