I feel like of every year, this year's party went the smoothest, despite that I am sooo much busier this year than I've every been before!
Here are a few tips that I've learned to make your party throwing a little bit easier:
1. Pick the day: Every other year I've done it on a Friday. A Friday that I've worked a few hours in the morning and had about 3 hours to prepare. Bad. Idea... This year I did it on a Saturday. I woke up around 7:30 and cleaned/cooked throughout the day. While I was busy the whole day I wasn't too busy. I was able to cook at my own pace and didn't feel at all rushed.
2. Pick good foods: This year I put a lot of thought into the food I made. I wanted a good variety but also wanted things that good be prepared ahead of time. In the past I have had to basically wait until about 4:00 to begin because everything I made was hot. This is so stressful. Below was my menu...most things could be prepared ahead of time. Basically I only had two things that I needed to wait to cook.
- Marinated Ham and Swiss Poppy Seed Buns
- Cream Cheese Pin Wheels
- Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies (From a 'Just Add Water' Package) Easier is Better
- Various Specialty Cheeses, served with Crackers and Grapes
- Hummus and Pita Chips
- Chocolate Dipped Pretzel Rods
- Broccoli and Red Pepper served with Ranch Dressing
I felt like this provided a great spread with a little bit of everything.
3. Have fun games: We always do a white elephant gift exchange, as well as a cookie game where you try to get a Ginger Snap from their forehead to their mouth without using your hands (The Great American Cookie Race) By having these games every year it gives people something to look forward to and expect :)
Here are a few pictures of the night, we had a blast!
Marinated Ham and Swiss Buns
Mojitos (love the straws)
Cream Cheese Pinwheels
The Great American Cookie Race