3 Winter Hosting Tips for a Warm and Inviting Party

Is it still bitterly cold where you live?  Here in Colorado we have had a really mild winter.  I think it was in the 50’s yesterday, and basically no snow this season.  Normally I’d be just fine with that, but seeing how much my daughter loves to play in the snow makes me wish we were getting more than we have.

After the holidays, it seems like winter really sets in and people are less likely to host parties or gatherings.  Today I’m giving you a few tips to help you host more in the winter because it’s all about making a cozy get together.how to host a winter party, cozy winter party ideas, hygge at your winter party

1. Get your House Prepared for a Winter Party

The first thing you want to make sure of is to set up a plan for all of the winter gear that is about to come in your house.  Every guest that comes in is going to have a coat, scarves, hats, gloves, boots, you name it.  Where are you going to put it?  You definitely don’t want it all piled up at your front door.

If you have a coat closet, great!  Be sure there are plenty of hangers and that it’s cleaned out.  You don’t want piles of stuff falling out when you’re trying to hang a coat up.  Also be sure to ask to take your guest’s coat and let them know  you’re putting it in the closet, so they can get it on their way out the door.

If you don’t have a coat closet, designate another area to hold coats.  Maybe the bed in your guest room, or set up a coat stand, or even having guests just drape them onto the back of a chair works.

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We don’t wear shoes in our house, so making sure there is a shoe drop zone is important to us.  At some of our recent winter parties, we’ve just put down a canvas cloth next to the front door for everyone to place their shoes.  This was a great way to signify to people to remove their shoes, but it also helped us keep all the winter nastiness off our carpet and floors.

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2. Entertaining at an Indoor Party

Being stuck inside during the winter doesn’t have to limit what you can do at your party.  You may have to use more of your house to either fit everyone or to entertain everyone, but there is still plenty to do.

I recommend setting up zones of things to do throughout your house.  Let’s face it everyone ends up in the kitchen or where the food is.  So to alleviate too many cooks in the kitchen, spread your party out a bit.  Set up some board games on the dining room table, or set up a cozy seating area by your fireplace.

Make sure the kids know where they can play, so they have their own space as well.

3. Provide Warmth throughout Your Party

The best thing you can do when hosting a winter party is to provide warmth.  You can do this by making warm, comfort food.  Things like chili, pastas, and warm dips.  You can even provide warm beverages by setting up a hot cocoa bar. Even just offering coffee or tea after everyone has eaten will warm everyone up.

Providing warmth in the atmosphere of your party is just as easy as providing warm food.  If you haven’t heard of hygge, it’s the perfect way to make your party feel warm and cozy.  Hygge is a Danish word describing a moment or feeling as cozy, charming or special.  The Danes achieve this feeling with lots of candles, fires, and blankets.

Incorporating those things into your party is a great way to make it feel cozy. Light lots of candles around your house. Roll up soft blankets to offer to your guests. Make a seating area next to your fireplace.  Your guests will feel warm and cozy in no time.

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If you make your next party in the winter this cozy and inviting, your guests may not want to leave 😉  Happy Winter everyone!

 

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Pantry Checklist for Hosting with FREE Printable

Happy Hump Day!  I just have not been able to get into a regular blogging routine, definitely something I need to work on. But here I am today with a post I promised you last week.

Speaking of last week, have you been liking the posts all about hosting in the New Year?  I’ve given you lots of ideas of how to celebrate this year and 10 ways to make hosting your celebrations easier.

Today I’m going to give you a little help getting organized for all of the upcoming parties and celebrations this year.  My thought process is that if you’re organized to throw a party at any point, then you’ll be more likely to do it.  Make sense?

Let’s start with getting your pantry prepped for a party.  I’m so lucky to have a good sized pantry in this house and I’ve definitely utilized it not only for food, but to host.

It’s a great spot to keep the majority of things to throw a quick party because it’s centrally located in my house and right by the kitchen which is where most parties end up anyway.

Here’s a handy checklist of items to keep in your pantry to throw a party.

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The first category makes sense to keep in your pantry for a party.  You’ll need things like plates and napkins to throw any kind of party.  I like to keep a couple different neutral themed plates and napkins so they’ll go with any kind of party I host.

party pantry checklist, organized pantry for a party, how to host a party with what's in your pantryIf you have space, keeping all of your serving ware in your pantry makes party set up a one stop shop.  I keep serving platters, cake stands, and serving utensils in my pantry.

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Cheese Markers

The next group of items are not something you would normally think to keep in your pantry.  However, if you throw a lot of parties, it’s nice to have some simple decor handy as well.  I just keep all of these things together in a large basket in my pantry.  I just pull out the basket and am able to set a table, buffet station, and decorate the party.  All from one basket!

Simple things that fold up or pack well are pinwheels, tissue paper, and honeycombs.  It’s also a great idea to throw a pair of scissors, twine, or tape in your party basket too.  Having a couple different sizes of vases is great too, because the easiest party decor you can use is a bouquet of flowers.

The last category is all about food and drinks.  There are just some things that are good to always have in your pantry or kitchen to help you quickly throw a dinner or party appetizer together.

I always make sure I have some pasta and any kind of pasta sauce.  There’s nothing easier (or more well loved) than throwing together a quick spaghetti dinner for a dinner party.  You make the spaghetti, and have your guests bring a salad, bread, and dessert.  Super easy dinner party idea!

Also having crackers and cheese is a must in our house.  I love to whip up a quick charcuterie and with those two things, it’s pretty easy.

I also like to keep a variety of drink mixers in my pantry.  It’s nice to be able to mix them for a signature cocktail or to make a kid-friendly party punch.

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What do you keep in your pantry to help you host more easily?  Were any of these tips helpful to you?

Be sure to click on the checklist above to print out and help you organize your pantry to host.

*Affiliate links are used in this post, but only for products I highly recommend.

 

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10 Ways to Make Hosting Easier in 2018

Hey friends!  Like I said in my last post, this New Year has started off quite slow.  Along with slowness, it always feels nice for things to be easier, right?  One way I’m making things easier is by saying no to various things this year.  You can see the full list here.

But to help you all, I’ve put together a quick list of ways to make hosting so much easier this year.  After being rushed and a bit frantic before several of our last parties, you can bet that I’ll be using some of these tips all year long.

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How to Make Hosting Easier in 2018

1. Have a party decorating tool belt

Having all of your party decorating tools handy makes getting ready for a party a breeze.  I use this chef’s tool belt to pack away scissors, tape, twine, and other goodies that help to hang decor quickly before a party.

2. Only do a quick five minute clean up before people come over

Focusing just on the areas where your guests will be keeps the pre-party cleaning to a minimum.  I promise you can clean the main areas of your house in about 5 minutes with this checklist.

3. Have your pantry stocked to always be able to throw a party

Soon, I’ll be showing you how to have your pantry stocked to be able to throw a last minute party.  Stay tuned for that!  But the basic idea is to have a few food items to be able to make a quick appetizer or dinner.  And keeping your most used party gear handy.

4. Streamline serving ware by only using white dishes

Make hosting any party, any time of the year easier by streamlining your serving ware.  If you invest in simple white servingware and dishes you’ll be able to throw any kind of party.  No need  to buy serving ware for every different occasion this way!

5. Use decor you already have to decorate for your party

Along the same lines as streamlined serving ware, using what you already have as home decor cuts down on all that one time use party decor.  So, using things like tables from around the house, various holiday decor that fits your party’s theme, or use artwork from other parts of you house as a party backdrop.

Click here to see how to use home decor as party decor. Decorate a party with what you have.6. Ask the floral department at the grocery store to arrange flowers for you

how to make hosting easier in 2018, easy hosting tips, easy party tips, signature drink ice mold, party punch ice mold, bundt cake ice moldThis is a great tip if you’re pressed for time, but want to include flowers for your party.  Pick a bouquet of flowers and ask the floral department at your grocery store to arrange them for you while you shop for party food.  Most grocery stores are more than willing to do this for you.  It’s one less thing you’ll have to do once you get home.

7. Use easy to put together food

Party food is sometimes overwhelming for some, so I suggest just doing really easy party food.  My go to easy party food ideas are frozen appetizers from Costco, ready made cheese trays from the grocery store, or precut veggie and fruit trays.

8. Decorate one area to create a party focal point

Only decorate one party area.  It’s less to buy, less to hang up, and less to take down.  Plus, it creates a really nice party focal point.  Try a photo booth backdrop or a dessert table background as a focal point.  Use this area to include your color scheme and party theme.

9. Have one signature drink

how to make hosting easier in 2018, easy hosting tips, easy party tips, signature drink ice mold, party punch ice mold, bundt cake ice moldLimiting the options of beverages you offer at your party cuts down on how much money you’ll spend, how much work you need before the party, and how much clean up is to be done after the party.  It’s always a good idea to have water available to your guests, but if you are wanting an alcoholic option, try serving just one type of drink instead of a full selection of beer, wine, liquor and all the mixers.  A seasonal cocktail or punch is a great idea.

10. Keep the guest list limited

I mean when two or more gather it’s still a party right? Jesus even said that when two or more gather in my name I am with them.  Less people makes party hosting a lot easier.  It’s great to have a big party occasionally, but having fewer people attend means less food, drinks, and less clean up.

I hope this list encourages you to keep hosting simple and easy this year so you are more inclined to open your door and celebrate with others.

Do you have any special tips and tricks to make hosting easier?  If so, share them in the comments, I’d love to hear them!

 

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50+ Celebration Ideas for 2018

Happy New Year friends!  I’m only like eight days behind the power curve (face palm).  I hope you and your family had a great Christmas season.

This New Year has started off pretty slow for us.  We’ve been out of our routine since pre-school wasn’t in session.  With all the parties and groups of people we’ve been around, both kids are sick now too.  Including a hospital stay for one of them.  We’ve been cooped up inside under a mountain of tissues trying to get them better.  I should just know to mark January off as a month of sickness.  This is the second year in a row.

Plus, I haven’t gotten my new planner yet, which basically means the year hasn’t officially started haha! So with all of that I haven’t felt the rush to start this year running out of the gate.

Even moving slowly, I know that this year is going to be full of celebrations, and many of them the last for us, for awhile anyway.  More on that later.

I wanted to give you a jumpstart on planning what to celebrate this year, so I put together a list full of ideas for you.  There are lots of holidays to celebrate, life milestones, and accomplishments.  The most important thing though is to take the time to recognize the occasion and share it with others.

What will that look like for you in 2018?  Will you have people over to your house more to celebrate?  Will you organize a celebration for someone else that deserves it?  Or will you step out of your comfort zone and celebrate one of your own big accomplishments?  Whatever the occasion, there is always a reason to celebrate and have a party.

Feel free to download this list and place it somewhere handy.  Check off the things you celebrate throughout the year as a reminder of all the fun times you’ve had.  Or use it to look ahead and see what things you may want to celebrate in the future.  Just click on the picture below to download.

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This year on the blog I’m hoping to give you more party inspiration, hosting tips, and great party recipes.  I’m also wanting to try some new things, like working with other bloggers and influencers, creating products for my readers, and teaching classes.  What’s something you’d like to see more of?

This blog has been fun to work on over the last couple of years, but I’m ready to scale this thing and make it bigger, bolder, and better for you!

My wish for you this year is the typical health and happiness, but also a year full of memories made celebrating!  Happy 2018!

 

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2017 Christmas Home Tour

Happy One Week from Christmas!!  I guess it’s about time I shared my home all decked out for the holiday.  It’s been a slow process to get decorated this year.  That whole having another baby thing really slows down how much I can get done on a daily basis.

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I’ve come to realize that my go to Christmas decor is all red and green.  I’m perfectly happy with that since I know it will never go out of style.  Most of the Christmas decor is centralized on our main level in the living room, dining room, and kitchen.

We decided to get a real Christmas tree this year, and I’m still a little on the fence about it.  It does smell nice, but not as much as I thought it would.  Plus, the whole remembering to water it thing and all the needles falling off, it’s kind of high maintenance.  I also don’t love how if there is a “bald” spot you can’t just move a branch to fill it.

Either way, it’s worked out because we put up our artificial Christmas tree in our newly finished basement!  So the fresh tree gets to take center stage in our living room.

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I also added a live, fresh garland around the doors leading to our patio in the dining room.  I love how economical they are.  You get like 30 feet of garland for not very much.  It was so long that I was able to cut a portion of it off to use on the mantle.  I just wish they looked more fresh longer than a few days.

Christmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsChristmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsChristmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsI’m still loving the mantle we got last year, and hanging stockings on it again this year.

Christmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsChristmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsChristmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsChristmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsThere is also a bit of a cardinal theme throughout our Christmas decor.  It’s no surprise given how big of fans we are of the St. Louis Cardinals!

Christmas home decor, Christmas home tour, red and green Christmas, Christmas decorationsI had to share this picture, because it includes my biggest, literally, Christmas tree decorating tip.  Every year, when decorating the tree I tend to get rid of smaller ornaments and add in bigger ones.  The best way to make your tree look grand and beautiful is using the biggest ornaments you can find.  These snowflake ones are huge and make the tree look great.

Now moving onto the dining room.  You’ve already seen most of it in this Christmas dinner tablescape post.

Christmas tablescape, Christmas table settings, Christmas table decor, rustic table decor, rustic Christmas centerpieceChristmas tablescape, Christmas table settings, Christmas table decor, rustic table decor, rustic Christmas centerpieceChristmas tablescape, Christmas table settings, Christmas table decor, rustic table decor, rustic Christmas centerpieceI also added a few touches of holiday red and green in other parts of my house.  The bathroom got a little update by changing out a vase and adding Christmas themed soap dispensers.

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I truly hope you have a blessed Christmas season with friends and family.  I appreciate all of your support and readership over the last year.  I’m looking forward to what the new year brings.  First, I’m going to enjoy some down time with my family and praise that Jesus was born here on Earth to show us the way and the light.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

 

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Celebrating everyday!