Yesterday we had the staff holiday potluck.  Usually people sign up to bring a certain item, but this year they left it open ended.  No signups.  No elaborate distribution of what to bring.  No assignments of any kind, just “come with a dish to share.”

And come they did!  We had approximately 50 dishes of wonderful food — and a great balance of choices.  There were decadent desserts and quasi-healthy ones.  Salads, dips, hot sides and veggie trays.  From shrimp to hummus to an authentic Mexican cookie dessert, we had all the variety and excess that you could hope for in a potluck.

Even the ever-popular cheesy potatoes, of which we had several, all had their own recipe nuances and did not seem like direct duplications.  Cheese lovers tried multiple versions and seemed to enjoy.

For years, I have been hosting potlucks and never do I worry about who brings what.  It always works out in the end.  

On most occasions, it is important to pay attention to details.  But not with potlucks.  Let the inherent balance of the universe work its magic instead of wasting your time on orchestrating the logistics.  Trust me: it will turn out ok without your intervention.

— beth triplett

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