Hostess with the Leastest

I used to fantasize endlessly about being the perfect hostess for a holiday soirée. As a young bride I immersed myself in the Christmas catalogs from major retailers like JC Penney, Sears, and Spiegel, picturing myself in the ideal hostess gown, serving cute petit fours from a silver tray, while guests milled about my tastefully decorated home with crystal tumblers filled with tasteful cocktails in their hands.

Indeed, I hadn’t a clue about hosting any kind of elegant gathering. My knowledge of the social graces was limited to what I’d watched on the silver screen: Extended pinkie, napkin on lap. Besides, Studly Doright and I had barely two cents to rub together, and the resources we did have would certainly not have been spent on something as frivolous as a party. But I did a lot of dreaming.

The Hickory Farms catalog was an important part of the fantasy, as well. I received one in the mail today, and that triggered this post.

As a terrible cook, I reasoned that all I’d need to do to insure a picture perfect party was to order the right combination of sausages, cheeses, and spreads from Hickory Farms in order to impress my guests.

Everything they offer looks so festive.

Now that I’m much older and can afford to throw a really elegant event I find I don’t want to; although, part of me still wants to order from Hickory Farms and wear a vintage hostess dress. May I interest you in some hors d’oeuvres?

Am I the only one who did this kind of thing? Please tell me I’m not alone.

Peace, people.

Christmas Catalog-o-Rama


Catalogs we’ve received in the past ten days.
Winter, and the impending Christmas holiday, are heralded in Florida not by cooling temperatures, but by the arrival of catalogs. I estimate that Studly Doright and I began receiving between four and eight of the glossy mailings daily beginning around the first of November. Today there were 12 catalogs in the Doright Manor mailbox. Twelve. I almost needed to make two trips to carry them all.


I’ve recycled four times this number.
Some of the catalogs go straight into the recycling bin, while others are put into a stack for future browsing. Generally, the future browsing pile never gets browsed, but I like to give them a sense of hope.

The Hickory Farms catalog is one I always take a few minutes to thumb through. Back when Studly and I were newlyweds the Hickory Farms catalog was about the only one we’d get in the mail. I’d read each page and daydream about someday hosting a Christmas Eve party where I’d serve all the cute little cheese and sausage trays. I’d be the hostess with the mostest for sure. 

One year I scraped up the money to place an order and was so very disappointed in the sizes of the cheeses. I had looked at the pictures and not the dimensions. So much for my hostessing abilities. Nowadays I know to have plenty of wine and beer on hand so nobody cares about the size, quantity, or even the existence of the hors d’oeuvres.

That’s why my new “go to” catalog is the one from Wine Country Gift Baskets:


Of course I don’t often buy anything, but I’m still planning that perfect Christmas Eve gathering…chestnuts roasting by an open fire, Jack Frost nipping at your nose…

Peace, people.

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