THEY MAY SPECIALIZE in catering high-end experiences, but when the Shullys of Thiensville-based Shully’s Cuisine & Catering celebrate at home, they’re no different than other families. A holiday meal always includes their Grandma Rudy’s onion dip. These five tips from sisters Nina Shully-Darling and Hadley Shully will help keep everything balanced so you can maximize the meaningful part – the joy.
1. Keep (or Start) a Tradition
Whether it’s a particular dish (Grandma Rudy’s dip) or a decoration. Write messages of gratitude – things you’re thankful for that year – on placemats or a tablecloth you can carry forward from year to year.
2. Focus on What You Do Best
And don’t stress about what you don’t. If you like to make the bird, stick with that and rely on local grocers, bakers and caterers for side dishes and desserts.
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3. Make the Day an Event
Use the natural world to help you set a beautiful table. “Take a nature walk and pick some dried hydrangeas and birch branches” to arrange in vases along with votive candles to add warmth, says Shully-Darling.
4. Add a Personal Touch
It doesn’t matter how large or small the gathering. Give each place setting a handwritten menu and name place card.
5. Incorporate Out-of-Town Loved Ones
Through the magic of Zoom, enjoy a glass of wine or the whole meal with those who can’t join in person. Or prepare a dish “together,” again using a video communications app to bridge the distance.