Let the Noche Buena Preparations Begin!

It's time to get ready for Noche Buena at the Darbys!

I wish you could all come. It's going to be such a fabulous event!

We've been up to our eyeballs in party preparations and I'm totally excited.

This year we are hosting my big, fat, Cuban family. And our house is small. Freakishly small when I think of the logistics of serving 30 people at a sit-down event, but that's not important right now.

So we are figuring it all out, or as we say in Spanish, "resolviendo."

Me (a little distraught and a little whiny): "But it's just going to look like our little house is just over-crowded. I want it to be magical!" *sigh*

To which my family responded by jumping into action. (I can be very persuasive when I'm whiny. =D)

Amy came up with the idea to cover all the pictures in Christmas wrap to make them look like gifts. And that made me happy. I think it's starting to look pretty festive.


Eric added greenery and lights to every corner of the room.

E hanging lights

It's coming together quite nicely. It seems that every spot downstairs (including the bathroom and kitchen) has been touched by Christmas and this makes me totally happy.

Today is the day I send the boys out to pick up the extra tables and chairs from my mom's garage. We are enclosing the back patio with a heavy canvas curtain. And we'll have to move out all of our living room furniture to have room for the tables. (When I say we, I mean Eric. =D)

And no, there's no room for the Christmas tree. (I know. Shut up.)

But my Creative Team made the executive decision that we will put it out on the front lawn and bring it in on Christmas morning. I kind of like the craziness of that. At least this is one Christmas we won't soon forget!

[Side note to all of you who start decorating back in November: I have nothing against decorating your home early, if that's what you like to do. I, personally, don't. I prefer decorating a few days before and turning it into An Event. It keeps me focused on Christmas itself. But that's just my way.]

Meanwhile, I'm in the kitchen with Adam cooking up batch after batch of our fabulous Creme de Vie. (Click here for my famous super-secret Creme de Vie recipe.)

Creme de vie 

I finally gave up buying the beautiful bottles at Pier One (plus it was getting a little expensive). The local wine shop was glad to give us (as in free!) their empties and I just made personalized labels for the recipients. (I like how the snowflakes on the tablecloth reflect onto the bottles and enhance the snowflakes on the labels.) Pretty sweet, no?

I have found that after a few cups of this wonderful stuff, everything seems so much more....I don't know...magical?

How are your preparations coming along? Do you host? Do you travel? (Do you drink?) ;-)