Lifestyle: How To Plan A Festive Holiday Party!

Want to have a successful Party and not lose your Holiday Cheer? 
 Use the tips and ideas here to create a  fabulous and festive fete!

1. Plan Ahead, Send out Invitations early. Add interest with 
invites that match your Party Theme.

 2. You DO have a Party Theme, right?
Get one; a theme makes it easier for you to plan your party
and creates anticipation and fun for your guests. 
Decide party style first. (formal or casual? Pot-luck, sit-down 
or buffet?) Then theme your party appropriately. 
It could be as simple as color & decor.
Or it might mean more involvement of your guests:
a Cookie Party, Cocktail-Themed Mixers, International foods, 
Holiday House Decorating. Or more unusual, such as special attire,
historic/literary, music, games, art, sports, etc.
Be creative - this can be the best way to a successful party!

3. Plan your party space, and move your furniture if you have to.
Create areas for guest to mix and mingle, to sit and chat.
Make it navigate, plan for movement and flow.
Decorate according to your Party Theme. 
It need not be expensive. Use the theme to coordinate the look, 
and reap the admiring compliments from your party-goers!

4. Decide ahead of time about whether it will be an adult party or 
if kids are included. If so, be sure there's spaces and activities, 
games or special play areas and food set up for them to enjoy.

5. Food & Beverage: Be sure to let your guests know what kinds
of food you will be serving. Make requests of those with food allergies
to let you know and have them be specific on what they need to avoid. 
Always have plenty of fresh water, juices and soft drinks available,
 for guests who don't wish to partake of alcohol. 
Soft drinks are important for those who are imbibing to stay hydrated,
and to have something to drink before driving.
Setting out a late serving of light munchies is also a good 
idea for prepping for a safe drive home.

 6. Recycling doesn't stop at Party Time. There is typically a LOT of waste
produced at get-togethers. Try to buy supplies that are as eco-friendly,
recyclable or reusable, as possible. This applies to tableware,
supplies, party goods and even decorations.
Set out bins for trash and recyclables, clearly marked, to inspire guests
to recycle the party ware. (and to inform them of which is which!)

7.  The Party's over, it's time to go... So the old  song goes. 
Be sure to let you guests know up front what time
your party will start, and when it will be over.
Include clear driving directions with your invitation.
Include info on where to park... and where not to.
If serving alcohol, arrange for a cab service to be available, for
guests who may have liked your party cocktails a bit too much. 
If all else fails, be prepared for either arranging a ride
or to have an overnight guest, if needed.
Make sure everyone gets home safe and happy.
8. Let the Holiday parties begin, and laughter and happiness flow! 

OK, there you go! Comment to add your own ideas or party tips,
and let me know what kind of party you're planning this holiday!