Planning the Party
Do you feel it? That little flutter of panic deep in your stomach that is starting to remind you that you have invited your coworkers and friends over for the holiday party. You’re now wondering if you’re really ready. You’ve picked a date, set your guest list, and sent out the invitations, but now what? The decisions to be made regarding food alone can be overwhelming, let alone décor, entertainment, and seating. And, heaven help you should you venture online to a certain popular website offering virtual bulletin boards full of “pinned” inspiration – before you know it you’ll end up hand-painting snowman faces on 75 white-chocolate dipped truffles.
To offer some peace of mind, and save you from non-pin-worthy hand cramps, we have a few tips to share to ensure a party that both you and your guests will be happy with.
Keep the food simple . . . mostly.
- Consider low-key, easy- going offerings, and focus your energy on one specific party element to add flair and elegance. Pair simple French dip sliders with a fondue dessert. Offer an elegant array of canapes, but take it easy on yourself with two-bite brownies from the store. Go big with a make-your-own Italian soda station, and go easy with meatball skewers dipped in jarred marinara.
Plan for fun.
- Offering an entertainment aspect to your party will not only make your party fun, but it saves you the worry over the conversations and interactions between your guests. Instead of having to consider a sizable bribe to your sister to not whip out her petition to stop the poor treatment of water rats in Louisiana, you can rest assured that your guests will be too busy having fun to debate issues, rodent-related or otherwise. Depending on the size of your party, you could do stations with games, karaoke, ornament painting, even a Do-It-Yourselfie photo booth corner with Santa hats, a fun backdrop, and a few props. If you want a centrally coordinated activity, host a painting activity where guests can create fun paintings to bring home or bring to work a for memento (We even know people who can help you with this. *wink wink*)
Consider hiring a professional to lighten your load.
- You know the scene: in the seven minutes before your guests are scheduled to arrive, you’re scurrying around your house armed with antibacterial wipes and a dust rag, meanwhile calling to your spouse to “LIGHT THE DANG CANDLES!” when your annoyingly-prompt co-worker rings the doorbell. Anything from hiring a cleaning service to come in before and/or after your party, to employing a full-service bartender, to utilizing a local catering company, can bring an incredible peace of mind in those countdown minutes before your party begins. Not only that, you can more fully enjoy your guests once the party begins, with having one less responsibility on your (party) plate.
The bottom line is this: If you’re not enjoying yourself, neither will your guests. Cutting a few carefully-chosen corners, and lightening your load a little can make a world of difference. Host a party that you would like to come to, and you’ll be thanking yourself well past the final “goodbye” to your party guests.