Hosting will always be a little stressful, but these Stress-Light Holiday Party Tips can help you can enjoy time with your guests!
I love hosting get togethers through the year, but something about the holidays puts extra stress on them. People’s expectations change; I know mine do if I’m being honest. The holidays mean a little extra effort and panache, but they don’t need to mean more stress.
Yes, that is easier to type than live because hosting will always come with some stress. I’m sure I will have more than one panic moment before having guests over this holiday season, but here are some Stress-Light Holiday Party Tips that should help you enjoy the time you have with friends and family!
Party Plan BEFORE sending our your invitations. While you don’t need to have every detail planned out, you will want to know what type of party you want to have before inviting people so you can give them the key details. Is this a cocktail party? Do you want a sit down dinner? Should people search for the ugliest sweater? Have a clear vision before inviting people.
Clear Communication. When sending out an invite, make sure to provide all relevant info and maybe even send a reminder email the week before. The goal is to limit last minute questions, especially on the day of. Let your guests know the normal time and location, but also prep them about food (just appetizers? dessert bar? full dinner?), drinks (open bar? BYOB?), and even attire (festive? snappy casual?).
Delegate. Have a list ready of things that people can help with. For example: We should use … an extra bottle of wine. chocolates. an extra platter. extra wine glasses. music. etc. You don’t need to do everything yourself!
Avoid fussy food or drinks. Especially when it comes to holiday parties, your guests want to spend time with you. There is no reason for you to be stuck in the kitchen the whole time. This is where Sam’s Club comes in handy. They have an extensive collection of appetizers, desserts and drinks that you can serve for your Holiday Party.
Here you can see Lobster Rangoons, two types of quiche, spinach dip in a Panera bread bowl, and a full cheese board. ALL from Sam’s Club. For dessert I made a macaron display and baked up frozen berry tarts that are delicious! Plus, I went with all bottles fr my guests – wine, beer, cider, sparkling. Nothing I have to refill or prep.
Set up and prep as much as possible ahead of time. Put out as much as possible the day before or first thing in the morning to relieve pressure as the party gets closer. When preparing for this party, I put out the table cloth and back drop the day before and then started putting the platters in place. This makes it easy for me to know what space I am working with and how things will come together.
Use real plates on your table! While you don’t need to go crazy with decorations, real plates automatically make a table look nicer than plastic. Even if you buy a platter of food, switch it from plastic to a different plate.
Simpler is better. This can again apply to your food and drinks, but I am talking decor. A few holiday pieces can go a long way. My suggestion is to pick a couple colors you want to use and then add just a couple holiday elements.
Make clean up easy! When arranging your party, think about clean up. Make sure you have trash and recycling bins in an easy place for guests to see and use. Also consider thick, decorative plastic plates that will keep you from running multiple loads in the dishwasher. Sam’s Club has a party set with a fine silver detailing along the edge which is really nice.
Enjoy yourself! There will most likely be something that goes wrong or someone that doesn’t show up. It is fine! It is very rare that any party goes perfectly. If you have kept the menu simple and prepared ahead of time, you shouldn’t be stuck in the kitchen. Enjoy your guests and let go of the details once the party starts.
Holiday entertaining can be challenging. But with these tips and the affordable, gourmet selections from Sam’s Club, you’ll be party planning like a pro this holiday season! Seriously! Sam’s Club is my family’s go-to for guests and parties, so you should head over to see their selection.
Want even more tips? Head over to FoodNetwork – your one-stop source for great tips and recipes. Plus, check out Chef Robert Irvine, host of Food Network’s Restaurant: Impossible Ambush as he ambushes an unsuspecting Sam’s Club member to help solve problems and party plan like a pro. In the Cocktail Party video, Robert shows us how to make the ultimate party platter whether it be meats, cheeses, dips, or even desserts!
While over there, make sure you enter the Party Planning like a Pro Sweepstakes! 1 Grand Prize winner will get a $500 gift card and 1 year Plus membership! Plus, there are other memberships up for grabs as well as some kitchen goodies!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sam’ Club. The opinions and text are all mine.