Planning the Perfect Holiday Party- there are so many stressors already during the holidays if you are planning a party of any size here are some items to help make it easier for you!
October is here, and that means Halloween, then November and Thanksgiving and then December and Christmas. Which means…Holidays!!! And PARTIES whether formal or informal everyone wants them to be successful and as stress-free as possible. Here are some tips for setting up a successful get together:
- Theme: Decide the type of party you are going to have-develop a Theme for your party!
- Food: is it going to be a sit-down dinner or will it be buffet style. Buffet style is a little easier for preparation, serving, and clean-up. If you choose to have a sit-down dinner consider hiring caterers, while expensive this will ensure you can enjoy the dinner and not worry about serving or clean-up.
- Invitations: Depending on your theme, design your invitations around the theme and start on the guest list early. Decide how to send the invitations- social media or old style through the mail. Be sure to send the invitations 3-4 weeks in advance, especially for Christmas. The sooner the invitations are sent out and you start getting responses- the sooner you will have an idea how big your party is going to be. ** ask about food allergies when RSVP.
- Menus: Depending on your decision from number 2: decide what type of a menu you will be serving. This will greatly depend on the type of theme you have chosen as well. For formal occasions, contact a Caterer as soon as possible – they book up early as well. The menu should include appetizers, main course, and desserts…don’t forget about the beverages!
- Beverages: Keeping in mind the type of menu you will be serving a variety of cocktails, wine and non-alcoholic beverages is a nice mix. Be sure to provide a pitcher of water as well- this will ensure everyone has choices.
- Decorations: Depending on your theme start shopping early, fog machines and party items can become scarce during the holidays…Thankfully there is Amazon and they can pretty much deliver within 2-3 days most items. Pick a theme and start making a list!
- Music: develop your playlist early.
- Furniture – extra party supplies: if you are going to need extra chairs, glasses, or other party supplies contact your local party-rental place early and make sure they can deliver necessary items.
- Kids: Plan for a babysitter early-either arrange for the kids to stay with the babysitter/relatives or ensure there is a play area for the kids that is out of the main party area.
- Pets: if you have them where will they be during the party? Consider boarding them during the party. What you don’t want is the cat or dog to come around a guest with allergies, or have the pet get out and get lost. If boarding arrange reservation immediately- kennels book up 4-6 weeks out as well.
- Household Items: Be prepared with plenty of toilet paper-yes this seems silly but you don’t want to be caught without!
- Security System: If your house has a security system be sure to de-activate it prior to guests arriving.
- Fire Alarms: Please don’t turn off fire alarms but keep in mind with a fog machine in the house you will need to ensure good air circulation or it could set the fire alarm off (I learned this this the hard way!)
- Safety: if serving alcohol recommend your guests utilize uber or lyft, provide contact information for both on the invitation. If guests drive to the party and drink, call them an Uber/Lyft before they leave your house.
- Parking: if the parking is limited on your road or if you live in an apartment where visitors must park is specific areas or be towed- be sure to include parking map. Or refer to #10: recommend due to parking restrictions that they use Uber/lyft.
Happy Party Planning,