Photo from dress4dinner.com.
[And for those of you wondering, yes, of course this is a picture of me. Why do you ask?]
I DID IT!
TWICE IN ONE DAY!
I ENTERTAINED! After our early dismissal from school last Friday, I had a group of women over for lunch and then a mere few hours later had friends over for dinner!
Big deal, some of you are thinking. Well, for me, IT IS!
In my younger years (the ones that I miss in so many ways), I loved having people over to my casa. But somewhere along the way, I got out of the habit.
And then, I somehow lost my confidence about the whole thing.
[Before we continue, let me state for the record, that in other ways I LOVE being a 50s-something -- 54, to be exact -- woman. )
I'm not a great cook, and I'm a worse housekeeper, so I guess I worried that if the "entertaining" involved cooking, the meal would flop. And/Or that the house wouldn't be clean enough -- that maybe one of the dust bunnies I had come to think of as beloved pets would jump from behind the couch and bite a guest on the ankle or something.
You fellow Horrified Hostesses out there can attest to the things-that-can-go-wrong-nightmares the imagination can produce. And it doesn't help if you, yourself, are, in turn, entertained frequently by friends who make Martha Stewart look like a slacker. (Or that your very own mother cooks for groups of 75 or more without breaking a sweat and actually thinks it's fun.)
Considering our phobias, why in the world then would any of us want to entertain?
Aha! FIRST TIP IN THIS SERIES: THAT is exactly the question you have to ask yourself and then honestly answer: Why do I even care about this whole entertaining thing?
If you want to entertain simply because you think you should (or someone else told you that you have to), you want to impress people with your hostess-with-the-mostest skills (which we've already determined that we Horrified Hostesses probably don't naturally have), or you want to show off your new house (or your new flooring, your new sofa, your new whatever), or you're trying to make people to think you're someone you're not (hey, let's get real, here). . . well, then stop right now where you stand. I can't help you.
But . . . if you find yourself genuinely having a deep desire to share your home with people you know and love (or want to get to know) because you feel that to share your home is to share yourself, then you're on the right track.
The best hostesses I know (and I'm blessed to know many), more than any other skill, have the ability to make others feel truly welcomed not only into their homes but into their hearts.
If you're wanting to gather friends and family into your home for that welcoming-and-lovin'-on reason alone, then I believe you can overcome anything that's keeping you from flinging open the doors and saying, "Ya'll come on in!"
And, that, I think I can help you with. (Trust me, sister, if I can do it, so can you!) So tune in later this week for the next Horrified Hostess post.
PS Okay, I realize there is no burlap in this post. Sorry. The first post just kinda took a different turn. But if it excites you (and it seems to be exciting lots of us in Blog Land these days), then I promise some burlap will be coming!