• Tips for Hosting a Stress-Free Holiday Party

    Tips for Hosting a Stress-Free Holiday Party

    With the holidays quickly approaching, the decision to host a holiday party can be a tough one. Throwing a fun and festive gathering is a great way to celebrate the season with friends and family, but planning and cleanup can make it seem like an intimidating chore. Here are some of our favorite tips, tricks, and techniques to ensure a stress-free holiday party.

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    Make a Plan

    First of all, the easiest thing you can do to make sure your holiday party goes smoothly is to plan ahead! Take a few moments to decide what kind of party you want; do you want a kid-friendly affair with easy-to-prepare appetizers or a more formal sit-down dinner? Are you looking to celebrate with a close group of friends and family or host a big bash? If it’s the latter, try making the party an open house, which will give you and your guests more flexibility. Knowing exactly what you want will help ensure a stress-free holiday party.

    Around the House

    There are lots of ways to turn your house or apartment into a merry and inviting place for guests. The first step: cleaning up. While it’s tempting to do a full spring cleaning in December, the truth is you can get away with a quick tidying-up of the rooms you know will be most used, like the kitchen, bathroom, and common areas. Simply close off doors to rooms you don’t want guests to enter. If you’re expecting a lot of guests, rent a coat rack or set up an area outside of a bedroom for guests to leave their coats.

    Get Creative

    As for party décor, save time by shopping online for any decorations, silverware, and place settings you’ll need. Transform a clear cake stand into a striking centerpiece by filling it with acorns, pinecones, or any other type of festive items. Repurpose Christmas ornaments by turning them into napkin holders – simply place the napkin through the hanging loop. If you’re having a sit-down dinner, do a dry run of place settings a day or so beforehand. Not only will you know just how the table will look, but also if a guest offers help you’ll know exactly what to tell them.

    In the Kitchen

    Of course you want to impress your guests with a memorable feast, but figuring out tricky recipes you’ve never tried before is the surest way to stress yourself out. Instead, stick to tried and true dishes that will satisfy everyone. When it comes to drinks, try putting out a custom cocktail – pick a simple drink (either alcoholic or not) and create a bar of garnishes and mixers for guests to build their own. And if the thought of finding a place to store all that ice is anxiety-inducing, repurpose your washing machine for an instant cooler that won’t make a mess.

    Think Strategically

    Most of all, don’t be afraid to outsource. Have a friend who makes a killer cheesecake? Know someone with an eye for decorating? Not really looking forward to rolling out the dough for two dozen dinner rolls? Enlisting your friends and family can be a real help in party prep, as can knowing what needs to be homemade and what doesn’t.

    With a little planning and preparation, throwing a stress-free holiday party can be as fun as attending one. If you have any other tips or ideas, share them with us here or on our Facebook  page!

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