Miss Party’s ‘ABC’s of Entertaining’ – In this case, ‘A’ isn’t for Apple!

With school around the corner, Miss Party thought it would be fun to play Teacher and instruct you on her ‘ABC’s of Entertaining’. They’re 26 helpful tips to think about as you plan your next party!

A is for ASSISTANCE! Hire or ask for dedicated help during your party! Unless you’ve got a cloning machine in the closet, you can’t be cooking, prepping, serving, cleaning up AND having relaxed conversation with your guests! It’s just not going to happen!

B is for BUDGET! If you don’t have one, get one! Know your party planning limits so you can make choices in the many different planning aspects and still end up with a final number everyone is happy with.

C is for CANDLELIGHT, candleholders and lanterns! Collect lots of white candles (tea lights, votives and pillars); clear, glass candleholders and lanterns! The candles are inexpensive, the candleholders and lanterns are reusable. They create ‘big bang’ ambience for small money!

D is for DECORATIONS! Be creative, this is the fun part! Use others’ great ideas, use themed decor, coordinate colors, add a touch of whimsy and a dash of humor! Party decor planning can be as much fun as the party itself!

E is for ENTERTAINING with creativity, enthusiasm and joy! (That’s Miss Party’s motto!) Sometimes we entertain out of obligation, but Miss Party encourages you to mostly entertain because you want to!

F is for FRESH! Use the FRESHEST fruits and vegetables possible! (Today’s savvy guests desire the shortest path from garden to plate they can get.)

G is for GUEST LIST! Invite interesting, friendly and enthusiastic people and you’ll have a great party no matter what calamity occurs! In the end, it’s not about the pretty decorations or perfect food, it’s just about people.

H is for HOSTESS WITH THE MOSTEST! Embrace it! Your hostess party hat makes YOU the life of the party or the death of it. It’s your stage, you’ve got to own it!

I is for INVITATIONS! Whether paper or paperless invitations, send invites that make guests want to RSVP, “Yes, can’t wait!”

J is for JUST DO IT! Pick a party date! It’s probably the hardest part! Make THAT commitment and the rest of the planning will fall into place!

K is for KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON! On party day, don’t fret over what doesn’t get done or doesn’t happen during your party, let it all go –guests are oblivious to what doesn’t happen and that’s a good thing, they should be!

L is for LIVE MUSICIANS! Live music has an irreplaceable energy! Support musicians whenever possible.

M is for MUSIC with energy! Good, upbeat party music gets the party going early and keeps the good vibes going longer! Themed music adds to party ambience! Putting a play list together is the perfect job for a music loving friend or significant other!

N is for NEVER underestimating the power of a comfortable pair of party shoes! As hostess, you’ll be on your feet from the beginning of the party prep until clean up…no one wants blisters crashing the party!

O is for ORGANIZATION and PLANNING! Can’t have too much of these very ‘good things’! Miss Party can’t emphasize their importance enough!

P is for PARTY ENSEMBLE! As in, what are YOU wearing? Already own it? Still fits? Need to buy it? Worse yet, need to find it? Need alterations? Need accessories? Need comfortable shoes? Got personal care appointments? –Cupcakes NEED icing to taste that good! Don’t forget, YOU are the cupcake, my dear!

Q is for QUIETLY cleaning! Sweeping through the party space a few times during the party to tidy used glasses and plates will save you at the end when you’re dead tired!

R is for RENTING what you need! Glass glasses, china plates and real utensils are SO much nicer than paper and plastic party goods! Whenever practical, save the paper and plastic for the picnic or bbq!

S is for SURPRISING guests! At each of your parties try to include something that’s a bit unexpected, humorous or playful! Why? It lightens the mood of the party and just because it’s fun to do!

T is for THEMING your party –always, always, always! Party planning is SO much easier with some sort of direction to head towards! Pick a color, object, season or cuisine to build around.

U is for UNDERESTIMATING the time it takes to decorate and prep for your party! Time seems to speed up during the hours prior to a party kickoff. Simplify your ‘Day Of’ list. You’ll accomplish half of what you think you will!

V is for VARIETY! It’s the spice of life and entertaining! With annual parties, give yourself and repeat guests a refreshing change with a new theme or menu. It’s much more fun to plan and attend something that will be new for everyone than the same old, same old.

W is for WINE, cocktails and beverages –have fun, be creative! Create a ‘signature cocktail’ or choose a beverage that works with your party theme.

X is for XTRA, XTRA, read all about it! Send a save-the-date email to give guests the heads up about the party. At least you’ll increase your odds that they will be able to keep the date clear to attend.

Y is for YUMMY desserts and coffee! It’s a gentle (and delicious) way to signal the party is winding down!

Z is for ZZZZZZZzzzzzzz…the sound of you getting a good night’s sleep when it’s finally all over and you can start dreaming about the next party! ;)

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