Here we are again at the time of year the decorations, the presents, the hype, the STRESS! Like many of you, I am hosting a few holiday parties. Here are a few tips on making your preparations stress free:
- Send Invitations( Ideally 2 weeks to 10 days before the party):
- Make things simpler by having your guests RSVP only if they are not attending.
- Purchasing / Grocery List
- Cleaning List
3. Keep the lists with you:
Have the pad or notebook that you wrote the list down in handy at all times and portable if possible so you can write down little things as you remember them. I find there is always something I have forgotten to write on one of my lists. This way there is virtually nothing that you forget.
Mapping out where the guests, food, games, and flow of the party is critical for the gathering to go off smoothly. Strategically setting up zones is also extremely helpful. Food zone, game zone, kid zone, etc.
Plan ahead of time where coats, shoes, and purses will be put in a secure space for safe keeping until your guest's leave.
Think best case scenario. Make enough for the amount of guests you invited. You never know when last minute when someone's plan change and they end up coming even though they originally declined the invitation.
7. Don't be the Martyr. Stressing yourself by making the perfect meal from scratch with every entrée, Iron Chef approved is not only not realistic, it causes way to much stress on you and in turn will not allow you to relax and enjoy the company of your guests.
Paper vs. China. Carefully weigh out your options when it comes to what you place your meal on. If you have a formal sit down dinner, china and flatware are appropriate. If it is casual, potluck most people use paper.
- When use paper remember the following:
Splurge on nicer, sturdy napkins. You won't regret it.
Shop around and see if you can find festive, sturdy utensils.
9. Don't expect perfection:
Mentally prepare yourself for the realization that everything will likely not go as planned. A good host or hostess will let the small hiccups that may occur to roll off their back so that the guests and the evening will not be spoiled by minor incidents.
That being said, preparing for possible hiccups is not a bad idea. So always have a plan B.
Above all this is a party for pete's sake! So let yourself enjoy and don't sweat the small stuff. Happy party planning!