|Stock Photo by Sean Locke|
The holidays are approaching, are you ready? If you plan to host out-of-town guests and friends, are you prepared to handle both the job and stress? The holiday season is a beautiful time of year that often carries high expectations. Not only must you purchase the best gifts (see “2011 Gift Guide for the Casa”), but you must also display the best decorations around the home and prepare the tastiest meal. Many hosts have to rely on themselves to tackle so many projects that can leave them feeling weighted down. This holiday season, take some stress off your shoulders with hosting tips that will keep you stress-free. To view more, click here or visit www.hgtv.com for additional tips.
7 Tips to Hosting a Stress-Free Holiday Party
- Make a List - Perhaps the ultimate way to create a stress-free holiday is to live by a list. Plan ahead, and don’t be afraid to delegate.
- Stock Up - You’ll never run out of nibbles if you shop with an aim to entertain. Stock your pantry with a selection of cookies and crackers.
- Keep Drinks on Hand -As far as beverages go, it’s always smart to stock up on soda and mixers. Make sure to have coffee (regular and decaf), cocoa, cider and a basket of teas handy. Keep your bar stocked with vodka, rum and a few choices of wine.
- Keep It Tidy - The best holiday host isn’t necessarily the one who lives in the world’s cleanest house. Got one messy room? Just close the door and turn off the lights and guests won’t go in. A touch of clutter? Consider keeping one bin or drawer empty to sweep papers into when unexpected guests arrive. You can save your filing for when the party is over.
- Create Comfort - For a casual holiday party, don’t feel compelled to seat guests around a dinner table. If you’ve got a lot of company, a buffet may be a better way.
- Open Your House - Too many friends and family to host at one time? Have an open house and let them know they can drop by any time between certain hours on one special day. Your guests will appreciate the flexibility and you’ll gain quality time with the ones you love.
- Be a Graceful Giver - Store a few extra gifts in a closet and you’ll never be caught off-guard when a friend springs an unexpected gift-exchange; try to collect items for all ages and a few gift bags in holiday colors. If you make a practice of picking up items as you stumble upon them throughout the year, it’ll be easier when the season comes around.