12 Secrets to Hosting a Stress-Free Holiday Party
Creating meaningful memories doesn't have to drain your energy or your wallet. Save time and money with these stress-less secrets for your holiday party.
Photo By: Jason Kisner © 2013, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Relax, You Got This
Make a List
Keep Drinks on Hand
Deck the Halls
As for your exterior, you don't need a house encrusted in twinkle lights to make an impact. Try a single stand-out wreath, potted evergreens, or a big bow on the front door.
Keep It Tidy
Add Joyful Sounds
Try to avoid musical selections with lyrics during the dinner hour, which causes competition between the lyrics and the scintillating dinner conversation that could go unheard.
Open Your House
Gunst says the secret is preparing foods that can be done well ahead of time. That way, "When the doorbell rings for the first time, you're ready." Open houses work best when there are lots of smaller dishes to bring out throughout the day or evening as opposed to one huge main course, she adds. That way your buffet is always fresh.
Be a Graceful Giver
Consider buying in bulk — divide one case of good red wine or champagne or prettily wrapped portions of quality tea or coffee. Or do some extra baking. Double that cake recipe or cookie confection and you'll have freshly baked gifts ready to go. While a fruit cake may not be everyone's favorite, no one will turn up their nose at a sweet tin of homemade cookies — an inexpensive gift that never fails to impress.
Wrap It Up
And don't overlook the power of a creative container. Everything from Chinese take-out containers to fabric remnants (illusion, organza) can help wrap gifts that are irregular in size or shape.