12 Easy Ways to Make Christmas Gatherings More Enjoyable

Christmas time is here and its coming up in a few days. I am sure by now you have finished your shopping and figuring out what to do. Here are ways to make your Christmas gatherings a fun and enjoyable one where you do not have to spend a lot of your time in the kitchen. Spend more time with your loved ones instead of being on your feet the whole time. You need to enjoy it too and not just do all the work. A helping hand does go a long way. When others ask to help you or takes the initiative, let them.

Here are the 12 Easy ways:

1. When you know you are having a big gathering at your home and invited people over, the most important thing is to do the baking and dessert’s a day or 2 before. Nothing will go wrong with it. If it needs to go in the fridge or freezer nothing will happen to it. Don’t leave to the day of.

2. The day before, set the table, cutlery, napkins, plates and add centrepieces to your table, but not too big so your food dishes can fit on the table.

3. Don’t go over crazy to cook so many different things. 4-5 different things for dinner is good enough. If you serve chicken, turkey, roast, pork chops, ham. Go with one or 2 of them from the meat list, and then choose salad and rice or whatever you want to make or whatever is part of your Christmas tradition. Plus if you want to make gravy. Cook all of this stuff except if you are making salad or rice. That can be cooked and prepared before the guests start arriving and then have all the other food cooked from the morning. It can be heated up after for 10 to 15 minutes, then you take to your table and voila. — Don’t go over the top. Chances are you will eat left overs for the next week or so. Don’t want that.

4. Putting chips, assortment of nuts(If no one is allergic), salsa, nachos, guacamole, dips, veggie platters, finger foods in the beginning will get your guests full. People will over indulge, so its not a good idea to put so many things out in the beginning. Don’t spend too much time with putting these before the hard work you went through cooking all that food for dinner. Take them out after dinner along with dessert.

5. When others bring something when it comes to food, dessert, a bottle of wine or something like a gift, It is customary and proper etiquette to open and serve them too. Unless, they advise you otherwise, then its ok to keep it for yourself to open privately, but again open whatever is brought to you and in front of the people who brought them. It makes them feel good to see your reaction.

6. have coffee/tea ready — before just add the water to the machines and measure extra water and coffee grinds on the side in case you need to make more and then just go back and press the button and then continue on entertaining your guests and spend time with them until it is done.

7. Clearing plates and everything for dinner is great, but end it there. Don’t start washing and sorting, drying and all that. It takes a lot of quality time away from your loved ones. If they want to help, that is fine. I am sure they won’t let you clear away the table all on your own. They will help with everything and bring it to the kitchen and everything else will be dealt with after.

8. When you have a lot of people, disposable cutlery and plates are the way to go. If you have more than 10 to 15 people or more, its a good idea. You don’t have to spend time washing dishes.

9. Plan the Christmas week.. Plan a day to do your grocery shopping, and then make sure you have all the ingredients needed to make it. Sometimes getting extra ingredients are better in case something goes wrong which it can in some cases. Never leave anything to the last day.

10. Be efficient and organized as well as making sure the house is clean, the kitchen and all that.

11. ***Always monitor how many drinks your guests have. Don’t let them drink and then drive later. Make sure to call taxis if need be or allow your guests that are impaired to sleep over and go home the next day or if they come with another person who has not had anything to drink, they should be the designated driver. It is your responsibility if they drink and drive because they are driving from your home. Be the elephant in the room and don’t permit them to go. Police have RIDE Spot checks out more during the holidays and don’t put yourself or others lives in danger on the roads because of a careless wrong doing***

12. breathe and don’t be stressed out. Christmas gatherings should be fun and enjoyable as it can be. Don’t panic if some things go wrong. It will be a memory you will laugh about as the years go by.

Have a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a blessed, happy and healthy New year of 2018!

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays

Dear All,

I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas to all my family, friends, friends I met online/in person, my fans, my readers and everyone who celebrates Christmas. Although The Armenian Christmas is on January 6th, it is also great to celebrate on December 24/25th. Wishing everyone all the best. ❤ ❤ Hugs and Kisses to all.

I also celebrate on January 6th where its my Armenian Christmas too. This is an exciting time of the year.

Happy Holidays with great health, happiness, and great things. Best wishes always.

Cheers to you and your loved ones. 🙂


Talin Orfali

A Highlight,

This Christmas, It was my first time marinating and cooking my very first turkey…. The end result — SUCCESS!! 🙂
I usually cook chicken, and other meats, but it was my first for turkey. I am so proud of myself and I did it all on my own. 🙂 – I also cooked the whole Christmas dinner..

Black Friday Ridiculousness

There are several reasons why I do not encourage and support Black Friday, Boxing Day, and whatever shopping days there are and I think it is absolutely ridiculous. What I don’t understand is that after Thanksgiving or any other occasions like after Christmas as well some people go out the next day forgetting everything and take advantage of Black Friday sales. I think it is hypocritical because just the day before everyone sits around the table being thankful for family, friends, food, and everything around us and you see people writing twitter tweets and Facebook status messages saying that the important thing is family and friends to get together and they also say, it is not the things that matter in life and how we should be thankful every day, then you see the same people out the next day doing the complete opposite.

Are people so dependent on materialism? I think so and I know so. When it is evident that some people in the world do not have anything, that they are in absolute desperation, but still manage and continue to survive and when there are people that are just barely getting by.

Another part of all this Black Friday ridiculousness is that, people line up for hours and days in front of retail stores just so that they can get their hands on a stinking product first and so that they can brag on their social media news feeds and to their family and friends on saying “Hey I got this awesome big screen TV”, or this awesome new cell phone or whatever else. They will stand and freeze and do anything they can to get their hands on anything regardless of weather conditions and whatever else. I think that is absolutely absurd and sad on many levels.

I would rather go shopping when I absolutely need something. I don’t go shopping for the sake of going shopping and blow all my money on unnecessary things.

Some people’s actions are selfish and acting like children starting unnecessary fights in retail stores just for the sole purpose of buying something where you can get it another day. Some people will get injured, have cuts, and get arrested and thrown out of stores. People get tackled, pushed, shoved, bud in line, swear at people, throw punches at each other just so that they can have materialistic satisfaction no matter what cost. It is not only immature behavior but disgusting as well.

People have to stop this utter stupidity. All people are doing is making corporations richer and these corporations are attracting sales so people dig into their pockets further. These are business tactics so that people can rush to the stores and cause all this attention and ruckus. So ridiculous. Some people have become so spoiled, that they don’t even care. Be content and satisfied with what you have.

What is your opinion on all of this?
Have you witnessed it?

My Ultimate Christmas Movies List – What is yours?

The Christmas Holiday’s are coming up. Almost a month until Christmas.
My top Favourite Christmas Movies List.
Old and New — Not in Any Particular order.
Home Alone, Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, Elf, Miracle on 34th St, Four Christmases, Santa Clause, Santa Clause 2, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (Griswolds), A Christmas Story, Bad Santa, Jingle All the way, Dr Suess How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Scrooged, A Charlie Brown Christmas, Jack Frost, Christmas with the Kranks, Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer, Fred Claus, Arthur Christmas, Santa Clause 3, Surviving Christmas, Christmas Consultant, Prancer, The Family Stone, All I want For Christmas, The Perfect Holiday, The Nativity Story, and the Holiday.
What are your favourite Christmas movies?
Is it part of your tradition to watch Christmas movies every year getting toward the Holiday’s?

Society Has Officially Ran Out Of Things to Talk About

Talking about a Starbucks cup that’s for Christmas. All this time with the Starbucks logo, nothing was said. All of a sudden now?
There are far more important issues to discuss and to bring up rather than a ridiculous cup. It is unbelievable on what great lengths people will go to for something so derogatory and so-called news which should not even be made news.
Some people have way too much time on their hands the way they think of the most bizarre things just so that they can be noticed. People can and will just do anything to get attention for the sake of getting attention. It is disgusting. In all honesty, people really should go find better things to do and think about doing and post on social media or whatever the case maybe with their time. All these useless things on social media and outside of social media do not have to be posted. I cannot stress that enough. Some people will just never learn and will not understand no matter how much some people tell others to stop posting ridiculous things.

Is 2015 Really Almost Over? Can’t Believe it.

Yesterday, when I woke up, It was a brand new month in 2015. I can’t believe October is here already. To me, when October comes it means that the year is almost over. 3 Months to go until 2016. Where did this year go? It was an absolute busy year for me and so much more until December 31st. I already see Christmas merchandise in the stores, Halloween, Thanksgiving things. The only thing about these months until April is that it is the Fall, its cold, freezing and Winter that I absolutely despise.
What are your plans for Thanksgiving, Halloween and Christmas?
I am excited to go on my 13th trip to Cuba soon. I absolutely love Cuba a lot. I go all over the place. I don’t just go to one destination.
Was 2015 good to you? Mine was, and I ended up doing quite a bit of traveling to Los Angeles, California, Niagara Falls, Ottawa, and among many other places, but there were some unfortunate things that did happen in my year, but everything turned out well in the end. Well, lets see what the next 3 months of 2015 has in store for me.
I wish you all the best for the rest of 2015 and beyond.

2015 is here! Welcome!

Hello everyone, now that 2014 is behind us, hope everyone had a pleasant, fun and great night when ringing in 2015. Here are to new beginnings this year. I can’t believe it is the second day already. Time is already flying by. before you know it, we will be putting up our Christmas/Holiday decorations once again. I remember the days when I always wanted to go out for new years and celebrate outdoors or at a banquet hall full of people, but nowadays, I just want to spend a quiet, fun and relaxing time at home with my loved ones with good food, snacks, a few drinks, and unwinding during the holidays is all that is important. I know its fun to get dressed up and to go to parties and everything, but I just don’t feel it anymore. I’d rather be at home all cozy and warm and just relaxing.

I don’t know if you feel the same way as well. To me, new years is just another day with another year added. We should be grateful for the days we have, for the years we are on the planet, and we should be grateful for all the blessings and everything we have. That is the most important thing that people really should focus on. Some people are so into vanity, materialism, and all that stuff, however the true meaning of the holidays and as well as everyday is to count our blessings and be thankful. There are so many unfortunate things happening in our world today, and we should always look at the bigger picture as things can be worse.

Always think positive, look at life in an optimistic way, be happy, live your life. Health, happiness, and positivity is the most important things in life. everything else is secondary. As 2015 is now here, I wish everyone a blessed year ahead and beyond. Lets create more memories, good times, motivate each other, encourage each other, have each others back, and share our stories with one another.

Many blessings and good times to everyone. Best wishes to all!

Cheers to 2015!