Tips for Hosting a Holiday Party

Holiday parties are so much fun. Parties bring out the festive decorations and all of the ugly sweaters! If it’s your turn to host for the holidays, don’t stress out. Keep things simple to leave stress behind. After you’ve invited your favorite people, start thinking about what items you’re going to need for the holiday bash. Before things get into full swing, go down this list to make sure you’ve covered everything.

Cook ahead: Have an idea of what you are going to serve, and prep the sides that can keep in the fridge for a day or two. Things like casseroles or cold sides are perfect for this. The day of the big party, all you need to do is pop it in the oven to heat which gives you more precious time to work on other things.

Ask others to bring sides: Divide up the work by asking your guests to bring something. People are happy to help, and it can give your table a fun blend of tastes. You may even find a new favorite recipe! If you do ask people to bring a side, make sure to give them some direction. If you tell everyone to bring what they like, you could end up with 3 mashed potato dishes. Instead, give guests a food group that you would like them to cover. Tell your aunt to bring a vegetable dish, ask your sister for dessert, and your friend can bring the rolls. That way everything is covered, but it also takes the stress off of you.

Clear off counter space: You love all of your little knickknacks and photos. They add your personality to the space, but they get in the way for the party. Counter space is always in limited supply with platters and plates everywhere. To open up more space, clear off as much as possible to give your guests more space. It can also keep your things safe. When the drinks get flowing, and hand gestures get bigger, you favorite vase could accidentally be bumped. Take a few minutes to walk around the house to safely pack your daily decorations. Keep them in the closet for safe keeping until after the party.

Don’t over plan: There is a fine line between not planning enough and over planning. When you have too many things on the agenda for the night, the party can feel forced, which is never fun. Instead of having a set itinerary, let the night flow organically, and have a few activities that people can pick up if they want to. Set out a few games, or have a holiday movie playing in the background. That way, people can choose what they want to do, and everyone will have a great time.

Keep it simple: Who doesn’t love having their house decked out in holiday cheer? But, don’t stress out about going overboard. Have some basics, and don’t worry about the rest. The more decorations you have, the less space you have for people to move around. It may look great, but people will be more concerned about spending time with you and friends. Don’t sweat it if the garland isn’t out. As long as there’s excellent food, great music, and the people you love, you’ll have a hit party.

Whether it’s a group of friends, or extended family and bunches of kids, these simple rules will always give you a fabulous party. The key is to keep stress at bay so that you can enjoy the party too. The number one thing to remember is that the party is about spending time with those that you love and less about all of the things. Pour yourself a festive cocktail, crank the tunes, and have a great time! Happy Holidays!

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