Twas The Night Before The Christmas Party

holiday party
This post and its next level cheeseboards are sponsored by DeLallo.

Bjork and I been hosting a Christmas party for the last seven years.

Seven years. That is weird. That is like when your parents talk about how long they’ve been attending so-and-so’s annual bunco party, and it starts to get into the number of years when you’re like, ohhh, you’ve been doing this since before Instagram. Wow. Seven years, huh? Okay. Yep. Got it.

Our Christmas party has easily been one of the best holiday traditions that we’ve created for ourselves, mostly because our friends are really, really awesome.

2010:

Three men posing for a photo holding cds and a figure of a head.

Our “new” tiny apartment. Friends from high school coming home for Christmas. Old junk being passed around as gifts, and one single picture as documentation. 👆🏼

“That was so fun,” we said.

2011:

holiday party

Same tiny apartment, same weird gifts, but a little bit bigger group.

“Let’s do this every year,” we said.

2012:

holiday party Philippines

Hello, Philippines (where we lived and worked for one year). Pause on party with friends. Lots of games, lots of laughs, and lots of homesick moments.

“I miss the party,” we said.

2013:

holiday party

Back home! New house! Still tiny, but perfectly sized for a small gathering of good friends.

“It’s so good to be back,” we said.

2014:

holiday party

Same one-bathroom, 900-square-foot house, bigger group, and Lindsay goes down with the flu mid-party. Good times.

“I hope that NEVER EVER EVER happens again,” we said.

2015:

holiday party studio

New spacious upgrade! Party relocates to our brand new, just-got-the-keys-and-there’s-hardly-any-furniture-here-except-piles-of-hardware-on-tables-and-an-undecorated-fake-tree, wide open studio.

“Bjork, your games are always ridiculous,” we said.

2016:

holiday party

Snow-pocalyse! Unsafe driving, party cancellation, and a casual offer for people to come to our house as a Plan B for any crazies who want to brave the weather. At which time 20+ people still came to our house. At which time things got really warm and really loud and really fun.

“That was ,” we said.

2017:

holiday party

A few new faces, a lot of recurring gifts, a mountain of empty pizza boxes, fireplace on the TV, candles in memory of loved ones (including Afton), and an epic dessert table.

“We have really, really great friends,” we said.


I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the party this year, because as mentioned in my Holiday Survival Guide for Sad People, parties are kind of different for us this year after losing Afton. I don’t always feel full to the brim with holiday cheer these days. In fact, I find social situations to be more exhausting than ever. As we contemplated what we had the energy for this year, it was pretty easy to decide what events to say yes or no to (mostly because there were a lot of nos).

But Bjork and I spent a lot of time asking ourselves: what about our party?

Are we too tired? Is it too hard? Is the memory of the party last year, and what happened right after, going to always make this a really sad event for us?

And maybe it is kind of yes to all of those. But it’s also something we always look forward to. They might just be being nice to us, but our friends say it’s something they look forward to, too. I am a lover of the food and drinks. Bjork is an avid and enthusiastic game leader. And our friends are really, actually, the best.

We also knew it would be okay to host again this year because, this year and EVERY year, we have legit rules for this thing that center around low-to-no-stress. Twas the night before the Christmas Party and I was losing my mind with organizational details? I think not, friends.

Ostrom Christmas Party Rules

  • Order pizza (no cooking!)
  • Have it delivered (no pick ups!)
  • Have friends bring dessert (no baking!)
  • Beer and wine only (no fancy cocktails unless delivered by friends!)
  • Paper plates (no dishes!)
  • Fake, pre-lit tree (no decorational stresses!)
  • White elephant gifts (no shopping!)
  • Above all else, zero-stress.

Now, even though we are majorly un-fancy for our party, I have to brag for a second: we had a Christmas miracle this year which was that I CREATED THIS FANCY CHEESEPLATE SITUATION.

DeLallo cheese board

😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍

And remember the no-stress rule? This was both! It was a fancy cheeseplate that was also no-stress.

Remember DeLallo Foods? We’ve been working with them for several years now, and this year they have a new awesome thing available through their website which is a variety of gourmet, curated cheeseboard gift and entertaining sets. Hollaaaah! These things make us holiday hosts and hostesses look like straight up Martha Stewart. NO-STRESS. Twas the night before our Christmas party and I was in bed at 9pm because that DeLallo cheeseboard already did all the work. Thank you and goodnight.

With the cheeses, spreads, antipasto, and meats that were included in my very large and awesome Italian Feast collection, I prepped and styled two cheeseboards – one sweet, one spicy. I don’t even know how to describe how much good snackage there was — hard cheese and fig jam and black pepper salami and fresh olives and dried fruit and nuts and pickled vegetables and peppers and mustard and spicy sopressata and smoked gouda and OMG IT WAS ALL SO GOOD. I want to eat it again right now.

Most of us host and/or go to parties around this time of year, and most of us like to be no-stress about them, so if you want to try one of these lovely boards for your holiday party OR send one as a gift (I, for one, would accept), use the code PINCH25. That will give you 25% off. 25% off! Hello, that’s awesome.

Click here to have a look at the boards. And remember: PINCH25. No special links, no printing anything, just a lil code in your brain to give you 25% off of a big box of cheese and related snackage. Win.


So, talk to me about this holiday party thing.

  1. Do you have any holiday party traditions? Tell me more.
  2. Do you cheeseboard? Yes, I just used that as a verb. Tell me a lot more. This was my first time making a legit cheeseboard and I was so glad to have a little hand-holding with this DeLallo cheeseboard kit. Are you a cheeseboard newbie? Do you always find yourself wondering whether to do things like, for example, cut or not cut the salami? Because I do. How do you make your cheeseboards unique and beautiful?

Basically I’m just trying to get the weekend party vibe to sort of extend into a Monday here. I know you’re down for this.

Also, an early Christmas gift for you. 👇🏼

Sage

This post and its next level cheeseboards are sponsored by DeLallo.

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