Dinner party stuff.

That's a misleading title...It should be "A short list of stuff I've learned about having a group of people over to your house for something" but that didn't fit in the space I had.

10. Always have extra toilet paper in every bathroom of the house. Doesn't matter if the party is one hour or all day -- you're gonna need it.

9. There is no such thing as "too many potatoes" -- especially if they're mashed. It doesn't seem to matter if it's 5 pounds or 10 pounds...they're ALWAYS gone.

8. Having teenaged girls around for cleanup is an excellent idea. If you can pay them in dinner rolls and dessert, that's an extra score!

7. Speaking of dinner rolls, they will not rise on command. Apparently yeast has rules, and begging has no effect.

6. Ice. Remember the ice. Preferably BEFORE you're out. Just a suggestion.

5. Watching people who don't know each other get to know each other is one of the best parts of having people over. That moment when the realize their lives/experiences intersect is just cool.

4. No matter how you plan, something will get missed -- overcooked/undercooked, not ready on time, not enough forks. And if you plan it right, no one you've invited will care in the least.

3. Obsessing about the condition of the house stops a lot of people from having gatherings. Stop it. No one is going to eat off the floor. I have three dogs and I guarantee there was dog hair somewhere in the house. My kitchen was clean, though, and I am sure I didn't poison anyone. But every room and baseboard wasn't perfect and no one has ever left in a huff.

2. Let other people do stuff for these dinners. I suck at this part. Have others bring stuff, sure. Do stuff once they're here, not so much. This is a talent. I should have handed someone a camera yesterday, since I couldn't manage to take a single Easter dinner picture.

1. Never underestimate or underappreciate your partner in these endeavors. Whether cooking, or serving, or cleaning, or just putting up with you while you do it, there's probably someone who deserves a really big thanks and a hug.

For those who read the previous post on the planning, this is the postscript -- we had a lovely Sunday lunch and the planning worked for the most part. [See #4.] And I didn't take a single picture.


  1. So true!!! Especially #7! BTW -- I've switched to a yeast brand called Fermipan. Works beautifully and QUICKLY!

  2. I really, really need to follow #3 more often. I get so wrapped up in needing the house to look a certain way that I forget to enjoy the fact that people just want to spend time with me...

  3. People say that all the time, Gini. "It takes so long to clean," "my house is always messy," whatever...If I get the bulk of the dog hair swept up and the toilets swished, the party is ON. Took me a LONG time to get there, though. And I DO have my obsessive moments -- and that's when having a teenage girl is really handy. She's available for rent, btw...


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