My favorite thing to do this time of the year is host Christmas parties and I like to go all out from making my decorations by hand to baking my desserts from scratch. This year, my family and I moved into a new home during Thanksgiving weekend, and the thought of entertaining guest was overwhelming. However, I was determined to celebrate our first Christmas in our new home. So, I planned a party that I am sure my guest will remember for years to come with a little help from my neighborhood Applebee’s.
Today’s party planning ideas are sponsored by Applebee’s: All opinions are my own.
Here’s how to host a quick & easy Christmas dinner that’s unforgettable
1) Create your party theme with a festive table setting
This year my Christmas theme colors are silver and blue with angles. I designed the centerpiece for the main table using angle ornaments, silver snowflake garland, light blue ribbon garland strung with silver beads, white and silver tinsel, a Led candle that was painted silver on the bottom, and a small string of battery operated soft white led lights. I covered the battery pack with a snowflake ornament and added a matching ornament on the opposite side.
For our buffet table, I created the serving platters, by hot gluing dark blue candy dishes to white trays with silver trim. Then I decorated the bottom of each platter with self-adhesive rhinestones. I made 6 in less than an hour. Our buffet is made out of a beautiful oak; however, I didn’t have time to polish it. So, I covered it with a gray tablecloth, added three medium-sized pre-cut silver paper snowflakes. I placed a platter on each snowflake and added an additional platter in between each space. Then, I wrapped the base of the platters with a string of LED battery operated white lights and added white and silver tinsel garland. I completed this layout by placing an angle on each side and one in the center.
2) Enjoy a stress-free dinner by having it catered by Applebee’s
In the past, I shied away from having my Christmas parties catered because I enjoy cooking for my family and friends. However, this year I discovered Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar now offers Catering just in time for my party!
I only had a week to plan my event and loved that I could call in and make my order, with as little as a 2 hours’ notice. That morning I went online to view their catering menu and called a location near me to place my order. Later that night, while my daughter and I were getting ready for the party, my husband picked up our order and it arrived at our house hot and ready to eat.
What I love about Applebee’s Catering menu is that it offers something for everyone. There were more than 30 delicious items for me to select from and I was able to order something for the adults and our little guest. I ordered Three Cheese Chicken Penne which was delicious! I put some to the side so I could have it the next day for lunch. Other items on my dinner menu included, raspberry lemonade, Cesare salad, mozzarella sticks, and breadsticks. For the kids, I ordered french fries and chicken tenders. We finished our feast with chocolate brown’s that tasted divine.
*Mrs. K’s Party Tip: It took a while for our guest to settle in to eat because we were having a great conversation and the kids were playing. Therefore, I heated up the fries by placing them on a large cookie sheet and baking them at 350 degrees for 12 minutes. To my guest surprised they were lightly crispy on the outside and perfect on the inside. I also heated the rest of the items for 15 minutes at 350 degrees in large pans.
Having my party catered by Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar saved a ton of time and it was really affordable. Here are some of the benefits of having your next party or event catered by Applebee’s.
– Applebee’s Catering is a convenient way to feed a crowd without breaking the bank. You can easily feed a party of six or more for less than $10 a person.
– There are more than 30 delicious menu items to order from, there’s something for everyone and You can also order with as little as 2 hours’ notice, which is great for last-minute gatherings. You can order by calling or visiting your local Applebee’s restaurant or order online up to 14 days in advance.
– Your food will also stay fresh and warm with Applebee’s packaging. It’s heat resistant to ensure your food can go from the restaurant to your party without losing any flavor.
For pricing and participating stores may vary so visit www.applebees.com/catering to find out if it’s available near you.
3) Create a fun kids table
When I was a child the kid table was just an additional fold-out table designated just for us to eat and go about our day. Now that I have my daughter, I want her and her little friends to enjoy the event as well so I created a table just for them.
I covered the table with white craft paper. Then I used one of the platters I decorated for the buffet as a centerpiece and filled it with french fries. Each table setting had a plastic blue plate with a coloring kit that included, a set of crayons, Christmas themed coloring book and stickers. I completed the table setting with cute princess themed Santa hats for our little guest
4) Entertain your little guest with three to four activities
I believe that when you are hosting a party that includes kids it’s important to place all the activities for the kids in spots where the parents will be nearby. At the beginning of our party, I knew everyone would gather in our kitchen. Therefore, I bought a Christmas village magnet set that Imonni and her friends played with as the grown-ups gathered to talk about the latest events in our families.
As the kids dined on chicken fingers and french friends, they enjoyed coloring, playing tic-tac-toe on a snowman themed game board and tried to figure out a Christmas themed cube puzzled.
Once the kids finished their dinner. They built snowmen out of felt using a kit I purchased at the dollar store. My girlfriend’s and I can talk for hours, therefore, I taped a 4′ by 4′ piece of white craft paper on the wall next to the front door. As my guest and I were saying our 30 minutes goodbyes, the kids were drawing little masterpieces on the craft paper using crayons.
5) Create a picture-perfect Christmas themed photo backdrop
I made a festive photo backdrop in less than 30 minutes for my guest to take pictures and have a digital keepsake. To created my backdrop, I used three strings of multi-colored Christmas bulb tinsel, one string of white and silver tinsel, one large white foam snowflake, two medium sized white foam snowflakes, two small green snowflakes, 1 small silver snowflake, and a blue and silver Happy Holiday sign.
First, I added 3 self-adhesive hooks to hang my display on and placed the blue and silver Happy Holiday sign on the middle hook. Then joined together the three strings of multi-colored Christmas bulb tinsel and one string of white and silver tinsel by attaching them evenly in the center using a string and hung it to the center hook. Then I evenly attached both sides with a string and hung them on each of the outer hooks. Next,I tied the small silver snowflake to the center of the large white foam snowflake and made a small loop on the back side and attached the snowflake to the center hook. Then I tied the two small green snowflakes to the center of the 2 medium white foam snowflake and made a small loop on the back side and attached the snowflake each of the outer hooks. The display was a big hit with our all of our guest.
I hope you found my tips on how to host a quick & easy Christmas Dinner that’s unforgettable, helpful. I would love for you to share your own personal tips in the comments below.
Finally, whether you’re planning a holiday party, an upcoming birthday party or hosting game night, I highly recommend you letting Applebee’s Catering take care of the cooking. It saved about 6 to 10 hours off of my planning time.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Applebee’s. The opinions and text are all mine.