Thursday Thrifty Throwdown: Holiday Countdown! 5 Weeks!
I'm not going to count it down til December...because I've done that so often and, frankly, I'm freaked out enough that November is upon us, I don't need to spread the freaked-out-ness. We've all got it. And for those of you that do an annual holiday party, you may be getting even more freaked out as you plan your shindig.
I love holiday parties and envision someday having a celebration each year as part of our tradition, but alas, we don't really have the space in our abode, so that is on hold. But that doesn't mean I haven't already thought of what we would do...and ways to throw that party without using up all our family piggy bank holiday funds. Parties can go over budget faster than a kid can say "I want Santa to bring me that" while watching ads on TV. I've got some great hints on what to save on and ideas on how to throw a great party while still watching your wallet.
-- Ditch the flower or fancy centerpiece. You can spend valuable moolah on flowers or store-made centerpieces. Use items you have around the house to make a centerpiece - a gathering of candles, a bowl of pinecones, an arrangement of ornaments. (Spoiler alert #1: we'll have fabu centerpiece ideas right before Thanksgiving on Nov. 12, so back then for more on this)!
-- Have a signature drink. Instead of a full bar offering or wine and beer even, have one signature drink like a winter sangria and one other offering like prosecco (Italian champagne) or a red wine you love that you can buy by the case and get a discount. Even if you aren't serving alcohol, having five different sodas and trying to please everyone's drink preference can add up. (Spoiler alert #2: we'll have ideas on great festive drink recipes and low-cost champagne options in December!)
-- Don't worry about matching. I'm talking glasses or plates or even tablecloths. Mix and match what you have in the home and make it eclectic. Or, if you really want to keep it simple and are buying items, choose a color theme vs. a holiday theme - all blue and silver or green and gold plates or napkins rather than a bowl with a Christmas tree trim or a tablecloth with Santa hats all over it. That way you can reuse these items at other occasions through the year and get more bang for your buck.
-- Ask folks to BYOB...or BYOD. Everyone is watching their wallets, so asking folks to bring whatever it is they want to drink or perhaps a dessert is a good way to save yourself a bit of money. Your guests will just be excited to gather and be merry and enjoy the other food you've prepared and won't mind helping out.
And spoiler alert #3: we are going to have great party food ideas and more budget party hints next week!
Are you plannning on throwing a holiday party? Do you already have invites to parties? Share your best holiday party memory!