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While setting the table for brunch, I used Better Homes & Gardens for Walmart red and green Christmas dishes. I was a little concerned with how they’d fit in with my pastel pink decor, but ended up loving the hint of red! Plus, they’re so festive! I also used gold flatware and layered the plate over a napkin and blush plate.
For the centerpiece, I used a small and medium brass and glass lanterns. Inside, I put battery operated LED candles and a collection of mini ornaments and gold stars. I love that I can use the lanterns for Christmas, but they’ll still work all year long! Plus, they look expensive, but they’re so affordable!
Above the table, I hung a few paper star lanterns that I had on hand. Since we don’t have a chandelier over the table, these do the trick!
Now I know that a file cabinet isn’t usually considered holiday decor, but I finally found one I like! The office was a mess because there wasn’t any organized storage. Unless you consider shoving things in the closet organized ;). It holds my framed wifi password (a necessity for guests). The frame is white with a white matte and high quality. Lastly, I used a marble tray with brass handles for holding the desserts. Can you believe this tray is from Better Homes & Gardens at Walmart?!
Don and I love to do a craft a day. One day we made paper snowflakes (Don even colored a few)! I was decorating the office and Don put a few on the door. I added in the top ones and LOVE how they look against the door. Plus it makes me so happy that Don likes to help me decorate- we have so much fun together. He said “this room is cuting me out” when we were done- lol!
When we moved into this house, there were cheap rounded drapery holders. Well, this one broke and I replaced it with the prettiest marble and gold drapery rod! I am a huge lover of marble and love it in this unexpected place.
On the console table, I added a garland I had on hand and layered it with some star lights. Over the art, I draped a piece of pom pom trim (an inexpensive way to decorate)! A brass deer candle holder adds a bit of whimsy. I love this little guy and was so excited when I found him-he’s perfect for my holiday decor!
On the other side of the console table, I wrapped a marble box in a bow to make it look like a present. I think it looks so cute, but again, I can use it (without the bow) after the holidays are done.
Alright! So there are my office holiday decorations. Did you happen to spot the elf I hid in the room?! Don is much more interested in her this year, so I think we’ll bring her out during December!
We’ve been hanging out so much in the office since I finished decorating. Its feeling so festive in here- I love it! Do you decorate other rooms besides your living room for Christmas?
hosting with intention
Can I admit something? Entertaining can give me anxiety! The prep work, the craziness of having people in “my space”- it stresses me out a bit. But I’ve recently changed my thinking about it and wanted to share some tips in case having people over is a little tough for you too.
See, my sister is coming in town from Montreal so my whole family is heading up to have a brunch at my house. I figured it was a good excuse to decorate my office/family room for the holidays. I’m going to show you those decorations with my tips on entertaining with intention.
entertaining with intention- setting your focus
Recently, I read a quote from Martha Stewart about entertaining that I LOVE- “I intuitively knew that entertaining well was not simply a performance, but an expression of important human emotions: joy, gratitude, love, generosity, and friendship, to name only a few.”
For me, that quote is all about focusing on the people while we prep and host. And I think that makes a whole lot of difference! Its definitely better than thinking about how much you have to do and how stressful it will all be #guilty.
how do you want the event to feel?
Another good tip is to set some goals for how you want the event to feel. For me, I want to have deep conversations, not just chit chat. I want to feel inspired and connected. Setting an intention like this for every event (even a small get together like the one I’ll be hosting) can make it more meaningful and memorable.
why are you doing it anyway?
After you have your intention, get clear on why you’re having people and why its important. It should be something deeper than “I want to see my family.” Maybe it’s “I want to show this person I’m here for them.” Or “This person just went through a hard time and I want to help them feel cared for.” Its deep and real, just like how you want your party to be.
small spaces = big fun
Think about the space you’re hosting in. Lots of time smaller is better so you have to bump into people and talk to them. I remember one of the best weddings I went to was in a house with at least 100 people. It was so crowded, but the conversation never stopped and it was a blast! You want confined areas for people to congregate in- that’s why I’m hosting in my office- nice and small with different areas for seating, eating, and playing.
the invitation sets the tone
A quick text invite saying “brunch at 11 on Saturday” is SO tempting! But, the truth is that the invitation sets the tone for the event. Remember the intention you set for the party and try to incorporate that into the invite. You can still do it through text or email, but send it with meaningful details.
when the party starts, make it special
Did you know that people will remember the first and last 15 minutes of a party the most? Instead of scurrying around attending to last minute details (or hiding in the kitchen), think of ways you can make your friends and family feel special as they come in- maybe have their favorite drink waiting. Make sure the scene is set- candles lit, music going, before people walk through the door.
be a good host
The job of a host at a party is to connect your guests and protect the party. Make quick introductions if everyone doesn’t know each other. If one person is left out of a conversation, find ways to include them. If two people are chatting for too long in the corner, invite them to mingle.
The host can also help keep conversations real by asking more intimate questions. People will remember events where they made emotional connections. By asking deep questions and then sharing a genuine answer, a host can move the party towards a deep conversations where you really get to know someone. You can also prep questions in advance like “what’s the scariest thing that ever happened to you?” “What was the hardest day of your life?” “Is there a book that really changed you?”
close the event
As the host, you can let people leave as they want or you can close the event by thanking people for coming. If you chose to signal the end of the night, it is nice to walk each guest to the door to say goodbye. This is the perfect time to share a gift with each guest as they leave so they’ll really remember the event. That’ll get you major bonus points and finish things by making the people you love feel special.
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