If you ask me, there are two types of people in the world. Those that give parties and those that don’t. I’m in the first camp. I have thrown literally hundreds of bashes over the years. For me, it’s the same as public speaking: the more you do it, the easier it becomes. I look at it this way: most folks don’t really care how good the food or drink is. They’re just happy to be invited. The key is that you have enough of both; I believe heartily in abundance. Years ago, I used to prepare elaborate menus and cook for days. Nowadays, I go for tried and true, big-batch recipes, simple salads, and I always buy dessert. And I’m just as likely to get a bunch of take-out. We thought it would be fun to put together an Instant Party to give readers some ideas going into the holidaze. I’ve got some personal go-tos and I reached out to some friends for theirs. Everything we served was available with 24 hours notice or less, was fork or finger-friendly (No knives! No spoons!) and pleased the crowd. Read the entire newsletter here.