Entertaining and hosting guests is one of my favorite things about the holiday season. I love a reason to be social with my family and friends. But sometimes the planning, the preparing and the execution of it all can cause some unnecessary stress, which turns an otherwise fun occasion into a dreaded event. Here are 5 simple tips for hosting a holiday party that will hopefully make your gathering a great success!
I am a list maker, so it is no surprise my first suggestion for hosting a holiday party is to have a plan! Writing down information such as your guest list and menu will help you stay focused and organized.
Once you have your plan, don’t be afraid to delegate. This actually serves a dual purpose:
a. You know what you’re capable of and you know what tasks are not enjoyable for you. If you aren’t sure how to put a playlist together for some holiday background music, ask your tech-savvy, musically inclined best friend to take care of it.
b. Asking guests to help makes them feel more involved.
Food and decor don’t have to be extravagant. Consider simple decor like a bowl of ornaments, a festive wreath or bow on your door etc. Less is more! When planning your menu, think of foods that are easy to prepare and can feed the appropriate number of guests you are expecting. Soups and stews are fabulous winter and holiday foods and they can feed a crowd! PLUS they are easy to cook and keep warm long before your guests even arrive.
You don’t have to live in the world’s cleanest house to be a good hostess, but you should also make your home presentable and tidy for your guests. This doesn’t mean a deep clean is necessary, ’cause a deep clean is probably better AFTER the party guest leave, am I right? (Sidebar: Why do we do this!? Spend DAYS cleaning right before a party just to have it all messed up in a matter of minutes when the party starts? So silly!) Here is how you can get the look of a clean house without being on your hands and knees scrubbing for 3 days:
- Quickly clear the clutter by sweeping papers into a big bin that you can go through later.
- Shut the doors (and lock them if you have too!) for rooms that are messy that you don’t want your guests to see. I don’t know what kind of party you plan to throw, (no judging here!) but I’ve never planned (nor attended) a party where all the bedrooms were needed. Just sayin’!
- Dust and wipe down your counters and hard surfaces.
- Sweep the floors, mop if you have to and vacuum.
- Clean the bathroom guests will be using
- Light a candle for a fresh scent and call it good!
I am a HUGE lover of tradition- so much, in fact, that my husband actually despises the word “tradition” because I use it way too often for each holiday! BUT it can be hard to live up to your grandma’s handiwork and it can be easier and more enjoyable to modify or break (gasp!) those traditions that seem to add unnecessary stress. So rather than singing every carol known to man while grandma plays the piano, try going around the room and have everyone share a favorite holiday memory. Every holiday presents the opportunity to start your own traditions, so be creative!
Breville has released new, time saving products such as the Smart Oven, just in time for the holidays! Take the guess work our of holiday cooking with the Smart Oven, the oven that does the thinking for you. Check out their website for more information on this product and other great gift ideas.
And don’t forget to reply below for two chances to win your choice of amazing Breville products either for yourself or as a gift to a loved one: YouBrew, Tea Maker and Smart Oven products ($250 ARV)