I realized this morning after I started working on my notes and research for this post, that I totally skipped over theme. For the most part, themes tend to already be in place. Whether it's a holiday, a life event, etc.. there's a general starting point there. But what happens when you want to amp up that start, or you want to throw an event just for fun. Never fear; I'm here to help!
Years ago, I hosted an annual Dinner & a Movie party. Seems simple, right? The fun began when I chose the movie. Over the years I showed things like "Moonstruck", "Julie & Julia", and "It's Complicated". If you are thinking she chose stuff that surrounded foods, you are right! I wanted to create a mood, to have people transported with a bite, and to keep people interested in the movie, I often did a trivia game surrounding a food/ recipe from the movie. To date, it is still one of my favorite types of parties to host. It flows. So start there. Grab a notepad and jot down the reason for the party. Once you've gotten that out of the way, start to build out on that. As you build, think back to the first part of this series.. your budget. As you work the details out, your budget and it's 3 parts will slowly fall into place. Games ( if the event warrants it), play list and conversation starters become easier to build, and trust me; I know it may seems trivial, but if you are just getting your feet wet with entertaining, these are things that you are going to want to have in place prior to your event. We will definitely touch on those as we start to work on our list.
If you breeze through your event, and discover you LOVE it, by all means, start a little binder of ideas, menus, etc. You can of course keep a master of this digitally, but I find that having a hard copy is great if I've got to grab help.
Let's touch on those major themes... since it's July, Christmas in July seemed fitting! I know, I know... if I take 2 steps outside, I'm going to puddle, my hair will frizz and turn into something that looks like wiry crazy squiggles, and the makeup I carefully applied earlier to slim down my chunky little face will most likely get lovely tiger stripes of sweat. HOWEVER... if you are planning to host a large Christmas party or New Years Eve gala (even on a small scale), I'm here to tell you sista.. now if the time to start the preps. You will thank me when you have the chance to actually breathe for 30 minutes before that first guest arrives, or hide out in the privacy of your bathroom for a few minutes instead of being in the shower and praying that the dog doesn't jump on the table, the cat doesn't take out the tree, and your children don't get sugar buzzed up from inhaling cookies and treats like it's their full time job.
Stay tuned for the next part of this series where we start looking at my favorite thing... list. We will keep with our Christmas in July theme and start to put things together! Until then.. stay holly, stay jolly & stay hydrated!