Le Dejeuner de Noel
Some of my well-traveled American friends and my European friends embrace a concept that I often forget about: the Christmas lunch. It's a simpler, more casual version of a dinner party, and often has a smaller guest list than a Christmas party.
The menu can be as simple as a good loaf of bread from the bakery, some cheese and crudité. The dessert can be figs and pears from the garden. And the digestif can be a short pour of whatever is in the cabinet. The important thing is to gather those friends or family members you don't often get to see and catch up in a setting that's not too frantic.
To make your party feel special, without driving yourself mad with preparation:
Send your guests a paper invitation to your lunch party if you're feeling fancy.
Dress yourself like a proper hostess and wear a set of silk pajamas to your lunch party.
Set the mood with Bill Brown's Classic Disco Christmas Playlist.