** This “Everything You Need for Hosting” post is sponsored by The Real Canadian Superstore **
A few friends and I started a book club recently. I was excited since I’ve never been in a book club before and I love to read! We usually get together at a local restaurant or cafe during the day, (as it’s easiest for us moms to carve out time midday) but this time, I decided to host a lunch.
We’re just getting to know each other, and I thought it would be fun to spend some more time together over food and wine and to discuss our next book, of course.
There is no better way to get to know your fellow moms, book club members or new friends than over a good bottle of wine and an array of snacks and finger foods (followed by something sweet, of course!).
I went the easiest route I knew — by booking the amenities building in my complex, and headed to my nearest Real Canadian Superstore to get everything I needed in ONE place.
If you’re planning a party or having guests over this holiday season, Real Canadian Superstore is the place to go since you can pick up everything you need in one shop! I picked up a variety of foods, with everything from olives and appetizers to deli meats and cheeses, to a wide selection of fresh produce, all at a great value.
(Keep reading to see my event planning and hosting tips, including time savers, and be sure to check out all these amazing photos we had taken to celebrate too!)
I went to the Real Canadian Superstore up the hill from home to make a list of the things I wanted to serve and to get ideas for the luncheon. They carry the freshest produce, with a large selection of local to BC products as well as the best prices. I knew that I could buy serving ware, home decor, fresh produce, deli products, and even wine, so I was excited about that – it would be so easy for me to pull everything together!
As I roamed the aisles I thought about what to serve for a simple lunch. I’m not much of a cook and I was going to host in my amenities building in my complex, so I didn’t want hot foods or anything too complicated to transport and serve there.
This store truly does have Everything You Need for Hosting.
I decided on simple salads, vegetables, fruit and charcuterie with meat, cheeses, bread, and crackers. I grabbed pretty much everything from the deli so the majority of the fresh vegetables and fruit came ready to go- cutting down the amount of prep I had to do!
The selection of fresh deli meats and even pre-packaged charcuterie packs make entertaining so much easier! I chose this trio of dry-cured meats including prosciutto, Coppa di Parma and mild Genoa salami that came together in one package. It put my mind at ease that I was making good choices because the array of meats was made for me!
I placed a mixture of lanterns and candles around the room to make the ambiance feel cozy – no need to go anywhere else as the lanterns, stemless wine glasses, and serving bowls are all from Real Canadian Superstore’s home department! I love that I can get everything I need for hosting all in one store.
- Picked a couple of dates and chose the date that worked best for everyone
- Researched ideas and themes on Pinterest
- Scoped out my Real Canadian Superstore for everything I would need
- Planned the menu in detail
- Wrote out my lists
- Made note of all serving ware items I already have
- Purchased all the serving ware and decor items
2 DAYS BEFORE
- Purchased all nonperishable grocery items
- Purchased all fresh produce and deli salads
- Put all serve ware and decor items in bins to transport to the clubhouse
- Purchased fresh baguette
- Prepared tomato bocconcini salad
- Moved everything to the clubhouse
- Had a friend help me create the charcuterie and cheese board display
MY GROCERY SHOPPING LIST:
- Various cuts of meat (4+)
- Various cheeses (3+)
- Fresh french baguette
- Various crackers (4)
- Vegetables selection
- Fruit: blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, cantaloupe, pineapple, mango
- Ranch Dip
- Baba ganoush
- Ready-made pasta salad
- Tomato, Bocchini and basil salad
- Olive oil
- Balsamic vinegar
- Ready-made quinoa salad
- Dessert: Cheesecake Lollipops
- Wine (red and white)
- Sparkling water
- Bottled water
- Iced Tea
- Coffee & Tea (Keurig pods for simplicity!)
THEME AND DECOR ITEMS:
I wanted to create a cozy and warm Fall theme in the clubhouse, so it didn’t feel so stark and neutral as it’s a common space. I thought of things that felt like Fall to me:
- Throws and blankets
- Fuzzy fur pillows
- Pine scents
- Table runner
- Table centerpiece or decor
- Flowers or greenery
And added all of these things that I didn’t already have on hand to my list as well! I was so pleased with the large selection of different options for entertaining home essentials at the Real Canadian Superstore.
HOSTING AND SERVING WARE:
I had some white serve ware already but needed to figure out what else I would need to serve charcuterie, dips, and salads.
I figured out that I would need:
- Four salad serving bowls
- Serving Spoons
- Dip bowls
- Olive bowl
- Charcuterie platter
- Wine glasses
- Sparkling water glasses
So as I made my lists and checked them twice (while checking out Pinterest for ideas along the way, of course), I realized I could buy everything on my list at the Real Canadian Superstore. Yes, even the wine, as my local Real Canadian Superstore sells a really great selection of British Columbia wines!
THINGS I LEARNED / TIME SAVERS & EVENT PLANNING TIPS!:
- It’s okay to purchase pre-sliced meats already packaged in a complementary-to-each-other selection.
- Buying deli-prepared salads save a ton of prep time on the day of a luncheon!
- Pre-cut vegetables and fruit trays can easily be displayed on your own serving dishes so nobody knows you didn’t do the prep yourself!
- Dip bowls are multi-purpose and can be used for spreads, dips, olives, and pickles.
- A cheese board is simple, add 3 different kinds of cheese and 2 types of crackers or baguette and you’re done!
- You don’t need to offer hot food for a luncheon or party!
- Both paper and cloth napkins are nice to have on hand.
- Adding throws, pillows and candles can lend a very cozy feel to a stark or neutral room.
Of course, I couldn’t let my friends leave without a little thank you gift, and these personalized initial mugs were the perfect gift. I tucked some chocolate inside the mug and tied with a burlap ribbon to complete! The mugs are a steal at $5 each right now.
Are you part of a book club?
*Sponsored by the Real Canadian Superstore. All opinions are my own.
* All photographs were taken by Wink Photography