When hosting a holiday party you may feel a lot of pressure to have everything be perfect. Friends and family you haven’t seen in a long time will be around and you probably want to impress them. Here are some tips to help you host your party with ease.
- Manage the mood. Right away, even before your guests arrive create a calmer ambiance by playing soothing music – jazz is a great choice, dimming the lights if you can and lighting some candles. You can also crack a window slightly to keep the house nice and cool and keep you nice and calm.
- Say yes when people offer help. You’re probably used to turning down people’s offers to help but it’s important to remember that people want to be of service. It’s great if you can be really specific about what you want them to do too, you can ask someone to bring a veggie plate or dinner rolls or a pie. Let them, and lesson your stress.
- Make a seating plan. You can even make festive name cards and put them at everyone’s seat. Remember that not everyone is comfortable talking in a large group. Try mixing and matching people throughout the table, put quieter people with more outgoing ones for a more balanced party.
- Play to your strengths. If you don’t like to cook then why not switch things up. You could try a potluck and have everyone bring their favourite dish. Or throw a cocktail party instead and have some fancy drinks for everyone to try. You could also do a cookie exchange party where everyone brings a festive cookie, or a gingerbread house making party where they bring their favourite holiday candy to decorate the house. Brunch can also work, where expectations won’t be as high.
- End the party with ease. Ending the party can sometimes be an awkward transition but there are a few things you can do to get the message across without being rude. Start by turning the music off and blowing out the candles. If the lights were dimmed try turning them on again. Get up and start doing dishes but don’t sit down again after, this will alert people the dinner is over.