Friday Fun: A Stress Free Dinner Party

At work we have four interns that live at our camp. So Hubby and I decided to invite them over for a little “friendsgiving” dinner. I know they have been eating a lot of camp food so I wanted to give them something a little fancy, plus a homemade dinner was something I knew they would enjoy!

I was so excited to set the table with place cards, napkins, and even a fun centerpiece.


I brought in some veggies from the garden and dressed up two ball jars with a  little raffia and candles. I put two small ball jars into two larger jars and lined the big jars with some artificial leaves. I love the simplicity and thriftiness of this piece.


I love using place cards I feel like they make every guest feel special.


We started with a gorgonzola, cranberry, and pecan cheese ball from Trader Joe’s.


Then onto an amazing a harvest salad. Mixed greens, 1 green apple, 1 cup of pecans, 1 cup of dried cranberries, and gorgonzola cheese.


We even had homemade whole wheat rolls!! I used this recipe and they came out perfect!


I wish I could say I slaved in the kitchen all day to make this amazing dish, but Mr.CP did and he did good!! I followed this Crock Pot Beef Bourguignon recipe and it turned out divine!


With a little mashed potatoes this meal was complete!


The ladies LOVED it!


(we also had dessert but I will post on that later)

Tips for having a fancy dinner without the stress:

1. Make your main course in a crock pot! This way you can prep the night before and the whole house will smell amazing while it cooks. If you work like me, it is so nice to come home and your meal is ready to go!

2. Make your side dishes the night before. I prepped the rolls and made the mashed potatoes the night before and just baked the rolls and reheated the mashed potatoes a little before everyone was ready to eat.I also prepped the cobbler the night before so all I had to do was pop it in the oven and it smelled amazing while we enjoyed dinner.

3. Have an easy appetizer ready for everyone when they get there (Trader Joes always have good ones) that way while you finish cooking everyone can enjoy drinks and small plates.

4. Clean throughout the week. I like to break up my cleaning throughout the week. But sweep and mop the night before.  Leaving the day of the party to enjoy. I even set the table the day before, that way I am not running around instead I am enjoying the party.

5. Use simple white plates with colorful napkins (whatever your theme is) for a pop of color. I got my plates and bowls for super cheep at World Market and we use them all the time! Everyday china is the best kind of china.  Also use whatever you have on hand to make an easy but elegant centerpiece, Pintrest has some great ideas!!!

Question: Do you have any tips to share?


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