Get Ready to Party Series Day 6 - Divide and Conquer

I recently hosted a group of  friends in my home for a fall luncheon. I thought it might be fun and helpful to write a series on how I planned and pulled off this party.
My hope is that by sharing it may be a blessing to someone else and it might encourage others to step out and invite                                                                                                           someone in!

Day 6 - Divide and Conquer

You can see the entire series by clicking the picture

Hosting a party or gathering can be intimidating and overwhelming at times. I'm pretty comfortable having people in my home because I've practiced for many years not because it comes naturally to me. My parents were great role models when it came to showing hospitality but for them it seemed so natural and effortless. When I married and began inviting people over I was usually frustrated that it seemed so hard to me. I apparently didn't get the effortless gene!

I soon learned my problem was that I had this need to do everything myself and everything had to be perfect. I felt as though asking for help meant I was a failure. Thankfully I quickly learned that I couldn't do it all myself and that no matter how hard I worked it would never be perfect. Perfection is the death of hospitality.  

Now when I host a gathering I always enlist a little help. I may ask a friend or family member to help serve or stay and help me clean up the kitchen. Help with the food is always appreciated.

For my luncheon I asked my sister-in-law to help me by bringing one of her signature dishes. Cranberry Gelatin Rounds. She prepares this for most of our family gatherings. It's simple but always a hit.

Cranberry Gelatin Rounds

1 20 ounce can crushed pineapple
2 packages (3 ounce each) cherry gelatin
1 16 ounce can whole berry cranberry sauce
2/3 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 medium apple, finely chopped

Drain the pineapple juice into a measuring cup. Add additional water to the juice to make 2 1/2 cups. Bring the water to a rolling boil in a saucepan or in the microwave. Place the gelatin in a large bowl and pour the boiling liquid over the gelatin and stir until dissolved. Stir in the pineapple, apple, cranberry sauce, and nuts spoon into cup cake liners. Refrigerate several hours until firm.
Remove the set gelatin from the liners and place on a serving plate.

The cranberry gelatin is good but served with the nutty topping it's even better!

Nutty Cream Cheese topping

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2/3 cup finely chopped nuts (pecan or walnut)
8 ounce container Cool Whip (defrosted)

Beat sugar and cream cheese until fluffy. Stir in nuts. Fold in the Cool Whip until well blended. Cover and refrigerate. This is good served with any fruit such as apples or strawberries. Heck it's even good eaten all by itself!

At your next gathering don't be shy about asking for help! 
I hope you'll come back tomorrow as I finish up this series on how to plan a party.

A plate at my table and a place in my heart!

See the party day here.

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