I love that having people over to my home has become easier and that I’ve mostly gotten over the initial intimidation of regularly inviting friends to my place.
Entertaining, though, seems to bring a new level of intimidation. When I say entertaining I don’t just mean people and food coming together, I mean invitations, decorations, and set tables. It’s the sort of thing I love doing and one of the things that scares me the most. It makes me curious why we put so much pressure on ourselves to do a thing that should, in fact, delight us.
Yet it is a lot of work and we do want our efforts to be appreciated, a thing that we don’t always do well.
For valentines day this year I entertained. I haven’t done it often and I’m prestigiously proud of myself when I do and it comes off well. It surprises me so much that I can accomplish it-I’m not sure why it’s such a surprise, but it does feel thrilling!
I made and sent out Dr Who themed invitations (most of our group are big fans and would appreciate a Tardis valentine), set a fancy table with my miss-matched, chipped china, had fresh flowers out the wazoo and made a three course meal. It was so enjoyable! And took so much work!
With a fancy dinner there seem to be so many different bits and pieces to prepare and they all take so much time. I sent out the invitations two weeks before, made the eggy cheesecakes two days before, and made the balsamic reduction sauce, candied nuts, and goat cheese mashed potatoes the day before. The day of I cooked the ham, made the ham gravy, roasted the brussel sprouts with walnuts and bacon and the balsamic reduction. I plated the salad before everyone arrived with fresh apples and a raspberry dressing, with candied nuts on top.
We were a party of single friends, celebrating a holiday of romantic love together. Not always ideal but better than a holiday of romantic love celebrated alone. Nothing chases away the feeling of loneliness like remembering you have friends who you love and appreciate and then enjoying a meal of incredible tastes that you are proud of creating.