Holiday Entertaining Tips

November 16, 2016

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You’d think that by this point in my life the novelty of Christmas would have worn off. Yet year after year, as soon as Halloween has ended, I feel myself getting into Christmas spirit and the excitement of the season floods over me. I’m a huge kid at heart so anything that involves treats, holiday music and presents gets me giddy. Hosting a holiday party with Real Canadian Superstores was sort of a no-brainer for me this season because even though I am a huge kid, I do love to throw elevated parties that set a beautiful tone. While these photos were styled up for this shoot, when we were finished shooting I wished that I had of invited some friends over to enjoy this delicious spread and holiday decor that had been created. Though I did get to sit down and enjoy the food and drinks with Jamie and my sis, and Milo standing over us drooling, it would have been so nice to host the first holiday party of the season. Real Canadian Superstores has blown me away with their holiday selection this year, making hosting holiday parties stylish, on trend and yet so affordable. If you’re planning on hosting a holiday party this season keep on reading for some of my tips, tricks and recipes. 
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Food is one of the most, if not the most, important elements to think about when entertaining at any time of the year. I like to make things simple and delicious by serving easy appetizers that are presented in a beautiful way. Here I created a cheese board using the PC® Cheese Knife Set with board. I love this board because it comes with knifes that are magnetic so they stay in place. I filled the cheese board up with 3 types of cheeses (1 soft, 1 hard, 1 medium), honeycomb, figs, grapes, almonds, olives, and of course bread and bread sticks. I also served some easy pop-in-the-oven apps that I will share below. If you are having guests over for a casual evening a cheese board and some finger foods are the way to go!
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Apple Cider Moscow Mules make the perfect drink to serve up for a holiday party. They’re so easy to make and create such an impact when served on a wooden stump in classic copper mugs.

Ingredients (serves 1)
1 oz vodka
2 oz apple cider
1/4 slice lime juice
1/4-1/2 Crabbie’s Ginger beer
crushed ice
Red delicious apple slice
Cinnamon Stick

Directions
In a Moscow Mule mug add vodka, apple cider and lime juice
Add crushed ice and fill almost to the top
Fill with ginger beer
Top with cinnamon stick and apple slice
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Sugared cranberries are one of my favourite snacks to have on hand around the holidays. They taste great and look so festive…like cranberries covered in snow!

Ingredients:
1 bag of cranberries
1 cup of sugar, divided
1/2 cup water

Directions:
In a small saucepan add water and half of your sugar
Bring to a boil and remove from stove once sugar is dissolved
Add cranberries and stir them around until they are all coated in syrup
Remove cranberries and place them on a wire rack for at least an hour before rolling them into the remaining sugar 1 small batch at a time.
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I love this Life at Home™ Gold Geometric Star Ornament to hang on our tree, but for me it made more sense to display it as a decorative object. It’s intricate geometric design and gold colour look amazing against our wood coffee table, adding some additional holiday glam. I also used the Life at Home™ set of 3 urchin gold star ornaments scattered throughout the eucalyptus table runner to add another special touch to the table (see 3 photos up). 
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Playing a great Holiday playlist is so important to entertaining during the holiday season. I am the person who listens to Christmas music for 2 months straight, but I understand that some guests won’t be a fan. Finding a holiday playlist that is both festive and tasteful is a nice way to add some holiday cheer that everyone will enjoy. I have a playlist here on Spotify but there are so many available that are a good mix of modern and classic. 

PS: These appetizer plates from the PC® Artisanal Collection were last featured in our Rustic Tablescape post.
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Admittedly I am a huge advocate for purchasing basic cakes and decorating them myself. It saves so much time and allows me to focus on other things like cleaning the house before guests arrive. Loblaws is always so accommodating when I need a basic cake made, but this cake in-particular was already in the bakery case. I loved the white chocolate shavings that looked like snow so I picked it up and got to decorating. For the cake I simply used faux pine cones, faux pine trees, sugared cranberries and cinnamon sticks and got creative. 
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The Holiday essentials collection from the Real Canadian Superstore has so many beautiful decor pieces but I did completely fall in love with this oversized golden deer statue. It’s made of styrofoam so its super light but the gold makes it feel ultra luxurious. Again, it creates a gorgeous contrast against the wood and won’t break anything if it gets knocked over by holiday party guests.
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Beautiful wooden cheese knifes on the PC® Cheese Knife Set with magnetic board.
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Another stunning piece from the Life at Home™ collection from Real Canadian Superstores. This mixed metal and texture wreathe would look absolutely beautiful on a door, leaning against a wall or on a coffee table with holiday scented candles in the center as shown here.
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{Apple Cider Moscow Mule recipe above}
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President’s Choice makes the best appetizers. I have our freezer stocked up with a variety of them every single year in case guests pop over and I need something quick and delicious to whip up. These puff pastry hors d’oeuvre are so yummy and when served on a wooden acacia platter look extremely elevated. Along with the wood platter, these napkins are also from Real Canadian Superstores. I purchased them a few years ago but I’m sure there are similar napkins available in store now. 
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Changing out throw pillows seasonally is somewhat of an obsession for me…but with pillows like this gold Life at Home™ sequin pillow how can I say no?
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The top of my decorated store-bought cake.
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Thank you to Real Canadian Superstore for sponsoring this post, all opinions are my own.

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