Tips on Planning A Holiday Party on a budget this season.
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It is always a great time to celebrate with family and friends and today I want to share a few tips that help keep the stress to a minimum when throwing a party. Today I am sharing a few favorite recipes, planning tips and a printable holiday party planner to help you schedule your next gathering.
Fun Holiday Party Themes
This time of year there are many themes and I believe simpler is better. This time of year celebrations such as a Christmas tea, ugly sweater party or holiday cocktail party are always crowd pleasers. Christmas cookie exchanges and gingerbread house building parties are also fun. Use online invitations or send emails to get the word out to your guests.
Plan the Holiday party Menu
If you are planning a cocktail party, you will want to ensure that you have plenty of appetizers and small plates for guests. If you are hosting a dinner party, decide whether you will provide the full menu, or if you would like for guests to bring a dish, appetizer or dessert. Plan on at least 2-3 additional servings for those that you are expecting just in case.
A cocktail party can be easier to put together than a full on dinner. You can ask guest to bring an appetizer or finger food to share.
We love appetizers here on the island. Check out some of our favorite simple and affordable appetizer recipes
- Glazed Chicken Wings – a nice chicken wing recipe that is kid friendly and not spicy.
- Baked Jalapeno Poppers – a slightly spicy recipe that is great with cocktails.
- Hot Chorizo Dip– a nice hot appetizer for a cold day or evening. Great with tortilla chips.
- Spicy Hummus – Hummus with a little spice.
- Blue Cheese Chive Dip – a wonderful easy dip that goes with vegetables.
- Chorizo Deviled Eggs – a nice twist on traditional deviled eggs, with a touch of spice.
Sometimes it is fun to Include a signature holiday drink. It can be alcoholic or not and is a great way to make the party more memorable. Include a fun sign with the drink description. A hot cocoa bar is another fun way to make a festive beverage bar for everyone.
Keep your budget in mind as you plan your party. While dinner parties are fun, everyone enjoys the company of one another more than anything else.
Planning the Holiday Party Decor
Simplicity is again the best here. If your home is already decorated for the holidays, you won’t need to do anything. If you are having a theme, like an ugly sweater party, or Christmas tea, gather up a few items that help embellish the theme. Consider cute centerpieces or signs to place around the food and beverage bar. If you have hosted the same party in the past, consider adding some photos from past celebrations as part of the decor.
Fresh flowers are an inexpensive way to elevate the holiday buffet. Pick some up at the market for some beautiful color.
Activities for Holiday Parties
Sometimes it is fun to have an activity planned like a Secret Santa, white elephant gift exchange, sweater contest or donation collection for a good cause. Crafting parties such as wreath decorating, gingerbread house or cookie decorating are also fun activities. Let your guests know in advance what is on the agenda so that they can plan accordingly.
Holiday Party Music
Create a playlist for the evening so that you do not have to think about music. Music is the soundtrack of life and good music can make a party better and energized. If you are feeling pressed, ask a friend to create one for you. It won’t cost them a thing and it will save you some valuable time.
It is always fun to have a small favor or take-away from the party. Something as simple as a wrapped candy or cookie can be a fun way to thank a guest for coming. Something from the dollar store is cute with a little sticker or note. Homemade fudge is a perfect send off gift.
We hope these tips help you throw a wonderful and memorable, stress-free party. Here is a helpful printable to help you plan.
Tips on Planning A Holiday Party – Printable Planner
While we are talking about party planning, if you need some inspiration, check out a book that I recently had the opportunity to review. In Style Parties (The Complete Guide to Easy, Elegant Entertaining) is a great reference book to have on hand if you love to plan parties. The book is the complete guide to easy and elegant entertainment all your long. Life is meant to be celebrated and what could be more fun than a year full of celebration parties? One of my favorite things about this book is the beautiful photos of food and drink offering fantastic party inspiration.
Each party also includes a suggested menu, invitation ideas, and party tips. Some of the recipes just sound fabulous like Prosciutto Asparagus Tea sandwiches, Seasoned Roasted Turkey, and Chipotle Roasted Baby Carrots with Watercress Yogurt, to name a few.
Know what else I like? There’s even a little section on shortcuts which totally is my jam. There’s also a section in the back as a source list which has businesses that offer bar supplies, pantry supplies, invitation food and party supplies. I really love the tips and recipes in this book and recommend it if you love to plan parties. It is also a great gift idea for the hostess or for a bridal shower.
We hope you enjoyed these tips on planning a holiday party Don’t forget to pin this post so you have it handy when you need it.