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Holiday Strategies to make your Party Special

December 11, 2015

Everyone has a signature style they bring to their parties that sets them apart from other hosts. Here are some tried and true strategies that will bring joy to both you and your guests.

  • There’s nothing worse than a stressed out host, so do as much as you can in the days leading up to the party. Choose menu items you can make ahead of time. I’ll shred my cheeses, do my chopping, get things ready on cookie sheets to pop in the oven, set out my service ware, set up the bar and buffet, etc. There’s always a lot of last minute things to do the day of a party that take way more time than you think, so the more you can get done ahead of time the better. The day of the party you should wake up knowing that everything is under control and now you get to do all the fun stuff like putting out the nuts and M&Ms in little holiday dishes. The goal here is to enjoy your guests and your party—not work the entire event!
  • You’ve slaved away for days making all the holiday fare. Be sure to hide a plate in the refrigerator for yourself. If you’re anything like me, I’m too riled up to eat, but the next day when I’m stuck with a big mess and starving, there’s not a crumb in site.  
  • Ask your close friends or family over 30 minutes to an hour before other guest arrival. This serves several purposes… A) You get some quality time with your loved ones before you must become the “Hostess with the Mostest.” B) Serve up a nice Champagne or Egg Nog and take a load off. You’ve worked hard and now you can take a breather with a select few before everyone else arrives and you are on door duty. C) No one likes to be the first to arrive and now they will walk into a house filled with conviviality.
  • Do you have friends who smoke? If you don’t allow smoking in the house, make sure to have a comfortable area where friends can escape for a break. I set up and decorate my garage with tables, chairs, holiday table cloths, candles, a heater and and music. You’d be surprised how much your guests will appreciate the extra effort.  
  • If you are serving alcoholic beverages, be a responsible host. Have designated drivers available and the number of taxi companies handy. Then offer to pick up your guests the next day to retrieve their car. Who knows? They might even pop back in and help you clean.

I hope you have enjoyed my holiday strategies. Cheers and have a Safe and Merry Season!

Cyndee Mady

Riverside Payments Account Executive & Former Professional Party Planner

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