I love hosting! And parties!! GNOMES and CHAMPAGNE!!! Tis’ the Season for parties! On top of all that, I do love, Love, LOVE a good theme party! I absolutely LOVE all the stages that goes into it! The planning, decorating, choosing a menu, cooking and presenting! But the icing on the cake is being surrounded by the people I love. And this is a way for me to let them know that I love them and love having them in my life! Also, it’s a solid way for me to keep up on cleaning the house and keeping it organized! Haha
Now that I am coming out of a fog I have been in for the last 1 1/2 – 2 years. I am focusing on how blessed I am. I am truly blessed and deeply grateful. I am a woman that likes to wear many hats. I really have to reign that in. Currently, I am NOT doing a fabulous job at it! And like everyone, I’m sure, I get caught up in the day to day hustle. How is it going to be 2019?! Really?? My first born graduated high school this past June. My middle little, promoted to high school. And our ever precious chunkcake is 2! (moment of silence… I don’t know how any of that happened) So the hustle and bustle, the fog in my brain from sleep deprivation and starting over, to well, just life! Brought me to really want to relish in the holiday season. Which is my favorite time of year! And to be honest, I DO relish in the holidays. I keep a pretty full schedule from Thanksgiving to New Years! And what better way to add to the festivities than to throw a “these are a few of my favorite things” (I hope you sang that, I did) party!! I am pretty excited!!
Alright, let’s get started!
Invitation: I’m hosting this during the Christmas Season. But really, this is a party you can host anytime of year!! I love sending invites through the mail, but there is something to be said about a good ol’ Evite. I feel I have too much on my plate at the moment. So Evite to save the day! Super easy! Pick your theme and get to creating the invitation. I used this free “Bright Spirits” Christmas theme.
Party Details: The where, what time and details of the party. Are you serving dinner? Sunday brunch? Drinks and dessert? Would like your guest to bring a “Favorite” dessert or drink? This can be a lot of work or a little. I always go to the side of A LOT. Haha, but again, I LOVE hosting!!
My party is starting at 6:00 pm. So I am serving dinner, light desserts and of course, the gift exchange (optional but the best part!) that goes along with “Favorite Things” party. I love giving gifts! Receiving isn’t so bad either 😉 The gift exchange can be easily misunderstood, but it all works out regardless. If you’re doing the gift exchange, which I HIGHLY recommend! This is what it is:
Favorite Things Gift Exchange: Each guest brings 3 wrapped gifts, valued at $10 each. (You set the price point) You pick your “Favorite” theme and buy 3 gifts in that theme ($10 each) The gifts can be 3 of the same things or 3 of the same “favorite” theme. (ex. You love scarves. So you buy 3 scarves that are exactly the same or 3 different patterned scarves. OR you love lipgloss so you buy your favorite lipgloss, or a chapstick, lipgloss and lip stain) Bring them wrapped, not addressed to anyone. I like to wrap them in identical bags or same paper. That way its easy to identify your gifts when they are in a pile of gifts.
Guest: After you’ve entered all your party details, send it out! Who are you inviting? I did a Ladies Night. Easily be a couples party or just a group of friends. At first I was keeping this small. Until I had my email list in front of me. Then I just started clicking away. So this party is now MUCH larger than I had originally planned. The more the merrier, right!!
Now that you have your Invitations sent out. Lets get to the details!!
Theme: What are YOUR Favorite things!! I love Christmas, so the season works out perfectly. And with that, I love Champagne, Gnomes, and all things that sparkle!! Gnomes have become more popular lately, so I don’t have any trouble decorating for this!! My house is already decorated for Christmas and I have plenty of gnomes hanging around (Even when it is not Christmas) Just added some Glitter and Champagne!!
Food: I am a huge fan of Charcuterie plates! Crackers, cheese and meats… oh my!! So that is a staple in my house, entertaining or not. (It’s actually my typical lunch) And you have to check out Good Obsessions laser cut Cheese Picks. I LOVE them! Back to food…. I made Pasta Fagioli. (Super easy) Avocado and Pepper Jack Cheese bites, and a few simple desserts! Keeping it easy! My mom brought the veggie tray and my mother-in-law brought the cranberry and brie puff pastry appetizer! YUM! Working on getting that recipe!
Drinks: Sip, Sip, Hooray!! Champagne, Holiday Sangria, Wine and good old H20 (With fresh mint and pomegranate seed to keep it festive) . Oh, and because I love giving gifts and stemless wine glasses. Everyone who came got to pick their own Christmas glass to use for the night, and it was theirs to take home. This was a big hit!
The only things left to do is 1. Enjoy the party!! And 2. The doing the gift exchange! This is how it works.
How to exchange Favorite Things: As everyone comes in, have a bowl or dish available, with a pen and 3 pieces of paper for everyone to write their name on. They write their name 3x. They brought 3 gifts. Put the names in the bowl/dish. Have a big area cleared for all the gifts. 3 each adds up! When its time to start the exchange, heard everyone in to designated gift opening area. Good luck, everyone has most likely been drinking, talking loudly and in deep conversation. It’s like herding cattle! Once you have everyone together, double check that EVERYONE wrote their name 3x on the little papers. The Host then starts the game. You stand up and explains what your “Favorite Thing” is” and then draw 3 names and then gives those 3 people your “Favorite Things” gifts. If you draw the same name more than once, just put it back and draw again. Everyone gets their gifts and opens it. FUN! Continue this around the room. It really is a fun way to get to know people a little more. Now, I had my 2 girls join in the party and exchange. They are 18 & 14. So whoever drew their names, if it was wine or something they couldn’t have, they drew again. Or if it was at the end of the game and their name was the only one left, whelp momma got it! Haha.
A funny example of gifts was my oldest daughter, Alexis. She LOVES things being clean and tidy. So she picked “cleaning” as her “Favorite Thing” LOL (Lucky me, right!!!) So she bought 3 Meyer holiday hand soaps, and 3 Meyer brand peppermint candles. (Value came to $10) And that was her gift. Which was a big hit by the way!!
This party was SO much fun! Everyone LOVED the gift exchange part of it. The food was delicious, the gift exchange was a hoot but the company was the best. I have the most wonderful group of ladies in my life! I am blessed! We don’t see each often, but when we do, it is a BLAST!! We actually are thinking of doing a “Galentine’s” party to keep this going!! Any reason to get together and be ridiculous!
I really hope you throw one of these parties or get to go to one. Let me know if you have any questions or if you DO host or go to a party! I would LOVE to hear about it!
Happy Holidays ~Jeanne