When Drea and Will were here we had a little dinner party for them (Ella was in bed, although she said hello during cocktails, right before she was tucked in).
Everything was simple, that’s why entertaining family and very close friends is such a no-stress pleasure.
We had cocktails in the gazebo and then moved inside for dinner because it was a little too chilly to stay in the garden.
The entrée, as always, was on the table when we sat down, yet another intelligent piece of advice from my best French friend, Anne-Françoise (if you’ve read my book you’ll note that she taught me many, many things over the years).
If the entrée is on the table, the hostess can sit down immediately with her guests and help set the mood for the rest of the evening.
“When you get up to serve the main course and clear the first course, the party is underway and everything runs smoothly, no one notices interruptions,” she told me.
Sometimes a guest will offer to help, but I rarely accept because I like to see everyone enjoying themselves and deep in conversation.
The salad, cheese plate and the next plates are on the sideboard, dinner plates are gathered and the evening moves on. Everything flows along with the greatest of ease.