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Holiday Hosting Made Easy [+ Crowd Pleasing Menu!]

November 2, 2022


Cassidy Miller

Disclosure: Thank you to Our Place and ShopStyle Collective for sponsoring today’s post. So excited to share a brand I genuinely adore and stand by! All products were selected, used, and loved by yours truly.

Perfect Pot [Steam]

Hi friends, Cassidy here, the Marketing Director at Living in Yellow! To start off I have to admit that I am probably Our Place‘s biggest fan. I love their mission, their products, and their aesthetic. Our Place is a mission-driven cookware company that is both woman and immigrant-owned. They put an emphasis on the connections that are made around a dinner table and I couldn’t agree more. Sharing a home cooked meal also means sharing culture, sharing stories, sharing celebrations, even sharing sorrows. It is such a beautiful and powerful way to connect with those that are near and far. It’s not often that a brand can invoke a feeling, but when I see Our Place show up on my feed, I just get this overwhelming sense that there is a seat at the table for everyone. This sense of inclusiveness is definitely not lost on me! I think as we enter the busy holiday season, this is such an important reminder.

Not only does Our Place value togetherness, but they also thoughtfully source their products, package them in biodegradable materials and offset their carbon footprint. It is so important that companies themselves take the responsibility of packaging their products in a sustainable way, and Our Place is setting the example. So as I mentioned, Our Place holds such a powerful mission and strong values, but the icing on the cake is that their products totally live up to their hype! So, let’s get in to it! See my favorite products, holiday hosting tips, and a crowd pleasing menu below!

As we approach this busy season of life, holiday shopping can be stressful and let’s face it…. procrastinated! But for the past few years, I have been turning to Our Place when if comes to gift giving and it has never disappointed. The best part? These are gifts that truly keep giving. When you gift things like the Perfect Pot or Always Pan, you aren’t just gifting cookware. You’re gifting new go-to recipes, impromptu dinner parties, togetherness, homemaking, and so much more. Just last year, I gifted the Always Pan to my mother-in-law, to my best friend when she graduated PA school and to a newly wed couple. And yes, it is worth the hype! It is the best nonstick pan I have used plus it is so easy to clean!

Day + Night Glasses [Cool]

Nesting Dinner Plates [Char]

The Nesting Dinner Plates, the Day + Night Glasses and the Daily Cutting Board have been on my wishlist and I am so happy to get my hands on them! I ended up purchasing two of the cutting boards just yesterday! Happy [early] Holidays to me! I love that they are textured so they don’t show knife marks as much. I also have to mention how amazing the Ovenware Set is! My favorite part? The Oven Pan doubles as a stovetop griddle! FINALLY. Where has this been all of my life? Why did I not have something like this sooner?! Plus it comes with a reusable silicone baking sheet! The whole thing is just a *chef’s kiss*

Ovenware Set [Blue Salt]

I know how stressful it can be to host during the holidays, but somehow I always seem to volunteer myself, ha! But I think deep down, I actually love it. I love decorating, I love curating a menu, I just love the whole process despite the unwanted stress it may bring! Here are a few tips + tricks that I have learned along the way!

When it comes to decorations, less is more.

When I host for specific holidays or seasons, I try to focus my decor to one area. For me, it keeps things more streamlined and less chaotic. Plus, I think have one area that is more of a show stopper creates more of an impact than decorations sprinkled throughout!

Use fruits and florals to decorate.

As you can see in the photo above, I snagged some florals for a simple center piece and garland [shoutout to Trader Joe’s florals!] and used seasonal fruit as a way to decorate. Sometimes I just can’t get on board with spending more money on decorations that I may not use again, so opting for fruits and florals keeps things sustainable and beautiful! A classic way to decorate a tablescape!

Use what you already have.

The candle holders you see in the photo above were something I actually already owned. I set them up and realized it would look better with a few more, but I was out of candle holders! I grabbed these bud vases, and somewhat forcefully [haha] put the candle in there and TA-DA! Two more candle holders just like that! Get creative and see what things you may have around the house already!

Use cookware that doubles as serving ware.

I already mentioned that I love Our Place’s aesthetic, so when I take my dishes out of the oven or off the stove, they are ready to go! The cookware is so beautiful on it’s own, that there is no need to transfer it to a new dish [plus, less dishes!]. I used the The Oven Pan solely as a serving tray for this party and got SO many compliments!

Have snacks accessible before dinner.

Before setting the table for dinner, I first like to have the table set with snacks + apps. As guests arrive and get their drinks ready, then I switch out the table and prep it for dinner

Have a set drink list.

There are times where I like to send out a drink list ahead of time, for example, in the invite I would include that soda, craft beer, wine will be served. That way guests know if their favorite drink isn’t on the menu, then they should make a quick stop to the liquor store! And I know what you are thinking, “but that isn’t being a good host!” Well I am here to tell you that you are in charge! And you can’t always do it all! You can’t be a chef, a mixologist, and host all at once. So set the boundaries you are comfortable with and stick to it!

Have a playlist ready to go.

One thing I realized is that music is a must for me! I think it helps set the vibe and ambiance for any gathering! I like to go for feeling and then pick songs out that emulate it! Try searching a feeling on Spotify and you will typically find all sorts of playlist options!

Plan a game or activity.

I am a lover of games so this may not be for everyone, ha! But whenever we host a party – especially with friends – we like to have some sort of game or activity. For us, we chose to have a fire with a s’mores bar but unfortunately it rained! But have no fear, I had a backup plan! We created our own version of the game “Can You Feel It” as seen on Jimmy Fallon [see it here]. It was super easy! I found a large box, cut two holes in the side and then scavenged my house for obscure items. We laughed and were probably over competitive, but it was so fun!

Ask for help.

We all know that our lovely family and friends offer to help, and for some reason we always decline [insert big sigh]. But I am here to tell you, ACCEPT THE HELP! I always allow myself to have at least one friend help me prep. That way not every single person is helping prepare the party they are invited to, but I am also not drowning in a to do list. So accept the help, and more likely than not, the person helping is getting just as much joy out of it as you are!

Choose a crowd pleasing menu.

My husband and I are fully plant-based so I know how hard it can be to pick dishes that appeal to the masses. I opted for for a vegan-friendly chili, two homemade pumpkin pies and homemade cornbread plus plenty of snacks beforehand and a s’mores board for after! It truly was a menu that pleased the crowd! And believe it or not, but this actually fed up to 12 people! Cooking something familiar and that can easily be turned into a large quantity is always the way to go.

Ovenware Set [Blue Salt] / Perfect Pot [Steam]

And there you have it! Have any hosting tips of your own? Leave us a comment below!

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