Friday, November 18, 2011

Great Holiday Gatherings Done For Less!!!

After Hosting Several Holiday Gatherings at my home over the years there are 3 Main Elements that I incorporate in each party that I Host.

-Food & Drinks
- & Party Favors!!!

If there was a #4 on my list, some people would say decorations.  For the most part the only holiday decorations that I incorporate in the parties I host, are just the regular Holiday Tree Decorations and other Home Holiday Decor.

With Party location already out of the way, the next big item is the Food & Drinks!!!!

When looking to Host a holiday party with Friends & Family it is always very cost effective to have a "Pot Luck" style type of party.  This allows your guest to bring their favorite dish and this also allows you to Cut-the-Cost of spending way too much money on food for the party. One way to keep track of what the menu items would include, would be to make a list of the Basic Food Groups:

  • Meats
  • Vegetables
  • Starch
  • Bread
  • Desserts
  • Drinks

After which, find out what people are bringing and compare that to what is needed.  Sometimes you will find that others will ask what you need.  I would then proceed with compelling the menu.  If you need to purchase anything extra, after you get the final menu of what every one is bringing, you would have spent far less money than had you purchased the whole menu.

Sometimes all that is left to purchase are the drinks and maybe this could be what the Host/Hostess provides!! When looking to purchase drinks for a Holiday Gathering, depending on the number of guest you may want to buy in bulk.  I would look to purchase drinks in bulk from your local Costco's, Sam's club or BJ's.  When looking to purchase Wine for your event, ask your guest what they like to drink and maybe suggest that they bring a bottle to share with others. I would also check out your local Wine store.

Now that Food & Drinks are out of the way, lets move on to ENTERTAINMENT!!!

A party is NOT A PARTY without ENTERTAINMENT!!! After everything that you have already purchased for Your Holiday Gathering, no one wants to then spend money on ENTERTAINMENT!! No sense in spending $$ on any dancers, or singers, or even musicians, when at the end of the day, your guest may not even pay them any attention anyway!! Why Not look for something more pleasurable and something that will allow your guest to take part in as well. You said it right!! LETS PLAY SOME GAMES!!!!

 When hosting an event with any size group of people, you will find that not everyone knows each other.  I think that a GREAT "ICE Breaker" game would be suitable for this type of situation. This type of game should include everyone introducing themselves and offering 1 or 2 facts about themselves.  One Great game that I have played before at one of my parties and have played at other parties is "Two Truths & A Lie".  This game is a great way to interact with each other while learning about each other as well.

I always like to have games lined up for my guest to play when I host parties.  Some games that are great to play with big groups of people are Gestures, Pictionary and TABOO, just to name a few. You could also play a Movie that would be entertaining to your guest.  The Movie could also act as backdrop noise for the many conversations that may take place in the room.  You can't have a Holiday party without Holiday music!!! There is nothing like the sound of "Chestnuts Roasting On an Open Fire and Jack Frost Nipping at Your Nose".  Music is a great way to encourage "sing alongs" as well.

Now enough about the Entertainment, now off to the FAVORS we go!!!! As an Event Planner, every party that I plan is a Production for Me!!! Everything has to be just right!!! Presentation is Everything!!! What better way to thank your guest for all that they have done and brought to your Holiday Party, than to send them away with a Nice Holiday Gift!! For if it wasn't for your guest and the food that they prepared, would you even have a Holiday Party???

Some great Ideas for Holiday Favors to give to your guest are:
-A Christmas Ornament
-Gift bag with multiple goodies

When purchasing Holiday favors for your Guest, THINK BULK!!! Also think of anything that you can purchase individually that would not break the bank.  At a party I once hosted I went to my Local Party store and purchased small boxes of chocolates and I attached a present bow on the top of each box.  The boxes of chocolate ran me about .99 cent each. They made great party favors!!! One year I actually purchased some gift bags and filled them with candies and Christmas Ornaments.  I then attached a present bow on each bag!! When planning your party favors, look for what works best for you!!

After you have made all the final decisions on the Menu, the Entertainment and the Favors, you are now ready to throw the most Memorable Holiday Gathering You could throw!!!!!!!!

Look for More from Stephanie White Events Coming Soon!!!
Stephanie White 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

"What Are the Big Ticket Items to Plan For, When Planning Your Wedding"?

When You think about  Your "Big Day" what do you Invision? Flowers, Cake, Horse & Carriage, Limos, Etc....The Sky is the Limits!!

After planning several weddings and events and attending them as well, I have learned that when planning Your Wedding, it is better to work on the "BIG TICKET" items first. I think that it is Important to have a BUDGET and also know the Budget and how much you want to spend on each area of your Wedding.

I believe that the BULK of Your Budget will be spent on Flowers/Centerpieces, possibly Photography and Videography and the Food for the Reception. Most of the time the Reception is where people spend the most of their budget;  Food, Wine & Liquors, the Cake, Favors etc.

Before you begin planning your "Big Day" remember to first sit down and think about how much you want to spend in each area of your Wedding......

Stephanie White
Events...By Stephanie

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