A Joyous Christmas is all about being organised so that you can go with the flow and let the day unfold in glorious, gluttonous flow. Have as much cooking as possible done beforehand so you’re not in a flurry on the day. If that means asking people to bring something then do it – they’ll most likely be delighted to contribute. We tend to have dishes on a bench or in the centre of the table for people to help themselves: I love the look of a laden table and I love the performative hubbub of carving the ham and passing the potatoes.
Styling your table can be really simple. I’ve gathered together some inspiration here.
Make sure there’s plenty of ice. Have extra glassware on hand. Keep your guests hydrated – Christmas can turn a little ‘tired and emotional’ especially if people are drinking more than they’re used to or if the day is warm.
I think Christmas is a day to say ‘yes’ as much as possible. If visiting kids need to unwrap their presents NOW then that’s probably fine. When Uncle Ken decides to have a nap before dessert then you’ll work with that. And, of course, you can say ‘yes’ too. If you someone asks if they can help with the dishes and the clear-up, definitely let them!