Easy Entertaining- Home for the Holidays!

Yes, the holidays are fast approaching and I am so thankful to have a few fabulous events to get me in gear. I recently attended the Pulte Homes Easy Entertaining event with one of my FAVORITE social chefs, Johanna Cook of Momma Cuisine!

I am having a few parties scattered throughout the holiday season, and well…am a bit nervous about the whole cooking and decorating thing. FASHION is more my jam- I can whip together an outfit from nothing, mixing prints and matching silhouettes with ease. I put this outfit together to wear to the event in two minutes flat…the dinner would have taken me two months to prepare:

When it comes to cooking, I prefer to “assemble” food instead of cook from scratch. I can put together a mean mashed potato bar or dessert display, but as for cooking a whole turkey….um….delivery? As for decor, I usually browse the clearance section of a craft store or troll the Virtual Yard Sales for quirky pieces. This is not my forté, so I was ecstatic that these two powerhouses in home entertaining showed me how to make it simple yet elegant!

A group of lifestyle blogger pals gathered in the BRAND NEW kitchen of the Pulte Homes community in Hawthorn Woods (’round the corner from my old stomping grounds). This home is the Stockton model- open, airy, light-filled and incredibly intelligent when it comes to entertaining and everyday living.

Johanna had a delicious yet deceptively simple menu ready and showed us just how feasible it was to actually prepare everything!

The drink of choice was a Caramel Apple Sangria, featuring Pinnacle Vodka (yes, it was delicious and a perfect afternoon treat!).

Of all the items on the menu, my favorite is the Black Rice Salad (and yes, she MIGHT have put that on the menu just for me). It is just such a delish mix of different flavors, and I will be making it for Friendsgiving this year. I love how she used mini pumpkin for individual serving bowls!

And I can’t leave out the TurDucKen- a turkey stuffed with a duck which is stuffed with a chicken, AND stuffed with different stuffing choices. You can find them now at Costco for $10 off! If you have ever wondered what bloggers do at events, here is a behind the scenes shot! We photograph and socialize…through our phones. It is pretty funny to answer the person’s tweet who is standing right next to you!

As for the home, I love the incredibly party-friendly layout. My dream home (and my only real criteria for selecting a house) is to have the kitchen open to the living area. I also adore the “Pulte Planning Center” featured on the far right- a little desk nook with a view of the kitchen and living area. SWOON! My desk is right smack in the middle, and my computer gets hacked by my little ones constantly.

How do you make entertaining easy for the holidays? I am always up for more tips!



  1. November 18, 2015 / 3:45 am

    I'm hungry and thirsty just looking at this! Cocktail time!

    • November 23, 2015 / 6:57 pm

      AGREED! Johanna makes it look so easy (and the sangria was incredible…could have stayed and drank the whole pitcher…in fact, I might do that at home!)