As football season enters full swing, watch parties will also start to kick into high-gear. Not to mention fall is the start of the holiday season, with Oktoberfest and Halloween parties, Friendsgiving and beyond. Have you thought of hosting one yourself? Entertaining in your home can be a mixed bag. We offer you, dear reader, a solid list of quick tips to help prepare your home for guests. Whether you are a seasoned party hosting vet or a newbie, this article is for you.
Keep Time On Your Side
When you decide to host a party, be sure to look realistically at your schedule. Deciding over wine night a week before is not the best use of time when planning to host. To decrease your stress level leading up to the event, be sure to give yourself around three weeks. This means that you’ll have several weekends to get RSVP’s, plan last minute shopping trips, decide on decor and clean your space. Prepare your home for guests, but ensure you are fiscally responsible as well. You never know what might pop up throughout your week personally or professionally; so padding your planning period with extra time cannot hurt your final project.
Don’t Budge On Your Budget
Take a hard look at your finances. What can you afford? Factor in what you are willing to pay for, booze, food, decorations, extra seating, etc. Will you have disposable plates and silverware? It all will help you decide the final number. You can also decide to add a BYO__ element to your gathering. A stock-the-bar party is a fun way to provide liquor for your event; a potluck can do the same for food. Even with contributions, as the host you should be prepared to provide these items. Follow the one pound rule, one lb. of food per guest attending. This includes appetizers, mains, and sides, but excludes drinks.
Activate An Activity
When attending parties, the mingling can be mind-numbing. In order to get and keep the morale high, create a game or event within the party. This could be as complicated as a murder mystery or as easy as corn-hole. Think of ways to help different groups of people come together and create memories. Perhaps you have a trivia session, or an eye-spy around the house. Participation will help the rest of the event flow smoothly, creation connections between strangers and friends alike.
Go With The Flow
Try not to be stringent when your party begins. Stray away from set schedules and allow the party to develop naturally. People may be hungrier or arrive later than planned, don’t stress about those little details. If you run out of ice, don’t melt down. Delivery services like Drizly or Postmates can save the day for small inconveniences. Your ability to “read the room” will be particularly important to the overall vibe of your gathering.
These tips will help you grow into the Martha Stewart-esque host you’ve always dreamed of being. No party problem is unsolvable, no guest goes home unhappy. Remember to try and have fun! This event is about enjoying the invitees, opening your home, and creating happy memories.