I am a bona fide member of the Martha Stewart generation — I was a newlywed in my mid-20s when she launched her magazine; a new mom when her TV show first aired. I am still haunted by memories of putting my newborn son down for a nap and, instead of resting myself, furiously gluing unshelled almonds to Styrofoam balls.
Entertaining was a dreaded and stressful event, requiring a carefully planned menu of exotic new recipes and a perfectly set table. I applied the same rigid standards to the decoration and maintenance of my home.
Eventually — though longer than I like to admit — I got tired of living like this. I discovered that entertaining is about friendship, and as long as my house is a place where people feel welcome, it is good enough. Though a little beauty mixed in certainly never hurts.
I’ve learned some tips and tricks along the way and will share them here.