‘Tis the season for festivities. In fact, you may even be hosting a party this holiday season. If so, here are five holiday party tips to ensure you and your guests have a jolly good time.
1. Plan a Menu
Note how many guests you think will attend, and plan accordingly. Most people err on the side of appetizers as opposed to a full-blown meal; it’s simply easier. Count on most guests consuming about 12 appetizers per person, and don’t overdo it! It’s not the end of the world if you run out. Try setting out lighter snacks at the beginning of the party, and bring out the heartier fare about an hour in.
As for drinks, save yourself a lot of time and hassle and keep it simple. If you’re serving cocktails, make one that can be served in a large batch (think: sangria, a fun punch, etc.). You want to be able to actually speak with your guests, not play bartender all night!
2. Preparation is Key
Planning ahead will save you quite a few headaches later. Make a list the day of the party and lay out what you need to do beforehand. Being prepared well before the party starts can offset any last-minute panic attacks.
When it comes to food, try prepping everything you can beforehand. Chop vegetables for your appetizer tray, set out drink ingredients, put out the flatware. You’ll feel better knowing you won’t have to scramble when the doorbell rings!
3. Clean Smarter, Not Harder
Housecleaning got you frazzled? Scale it back. It’s unlikely your guests are going to express a desire to wander into your bedroom or that messy hall closet. Close doors and turn off the lights for rooms you don’t want guests wandering into, and focus on cleaning the most high-traffic gathering areas, like the bathrooms, living and dining rooms.
What if you’re entertaining in a small space, like an apartment, and you’ve run out of storage space? Try the shower. It’s true — if you have to stash larger items in the shower, no one will be the wiser. Only the nosiest guests are likely to pull back the shower curtain.
4. Mix Master
No party is complete without a soundtrack. Create a festive playlist for an easy way to add cheer. Don’t forget to keep the volume low; you’ll want guests to be able to hear each other. Another pro tip: During dinner, keep the tunes lyric-free. It makes conversation easier when guests aren’t trying to name that tune!
5. Enjoy Yourself
Above all, don’t forget to have fun. Don’t stress if your party isn’t perfect. Your guests won’t remember if the pastry burned or you ran out of matching plates. The real point is enjoying the company of friends and family. After all, it’s the company that truly makes the party.