How to host a successful holiday party
The holiday season is synonymous with holiday parties, and thankfully so. Not to put down other holidays throughout the year and their respected celebrations, but there is something particularly special about holiday parties throughout the November and December months that stands out as especially cheerful. On the flip side, the holidays do to tend to surface some stressful anxiety about planning these memorable parties, buying the supplies, and budgeting since it’s not the most inexpensive season. But the important thing is to stay calm and collected so the stress doesn’t outshine all the joy that gathering with your friends and family brings; even those crazy aunt and uncle stories make for some good laughs.
When planning your menu remember to keep it simple. You don’t want to be stuck in the kitchen for the entire party and not be able to enjoy mingling; otherwise you might miss out on 80-year-old grandmother demonstrating the Macarena dance. Start with easy appetizers, such as cheese and crackers, nuts, chips and dip, any of those combinations will be a hit. Enlisting some help from one of your responsible niece or nephew, it’s amazing how willingly helpful they can be when you promise some extra dessert on the side, have them carry these appetizers, along with plates, napkins, and silverware, using a buffet caddy. Unless you’re planning on a balancing plate act as part of your party’s entertainment, buffet caddies are a perfect way to transport many things from the kitchen to your guests without having to make too many trips.
You’ll also want to make sure you’ve stocked up on enough drinks for everyone. Keeping in mind that every party is different and it depends on the crowd you have, it might be more reasonable both for your wallet and for ensuring some level of control, to simply have a few choices of wine and beer to serve as the alcoholic drinks, and then have soft drinks and coffee, both regular and decaf, as well. That way as a hostess you can easily play bartender and monitor how everyone is doing on drinks.
You shouldn’t feel obligated to serve everyone around the dinner table either. Buffet style is an effective way to keep the party casual and let your guests handle serving themselves using decorative buffet dishes. Seating areas scattered around the house will continue to promote more socializing and more importantly allows you to easily circulate around and check in on everyone.
As for any holiday party, you shouldn’t let the spirit get lost in the mix of all the pressures of hosting. Make sure you plan ideas that you’re comfortable with and enjoy.