More and more people are opting to stay home rather than go out these days even after vaccination, but how can you enjoy a party with your family or your group of vaccinated friends at home? Even in a small space, you can have a great get-together! Use these tips to help you make the most of what you have:
Think About Parking
If you live in an apartment or have a small driveway, be sure to think about where your guests can park before sending out invitations. If you are assigned a certain number of spaces in a specific location, be clear with your guests about where those spaces are. Some apartment communities provide guest parking – know where that parking is and help guests by giving them directions. If your community does not offer parking on the premises, talk with your community manager before planning your party to find out how you can accommodate guests.
Cook Early, Relax Later
When you have a large group of guests to entertain, you don’t want to spend all your time in the kitchen! Make sure you can mingle with your guests by planning and cooking as much as you can before the party. An apartment can get very hot when it’s filled with lots of guests, and cooking can make your space downright steamy! Plan dishes that are great served cold or room temperature and can be left out during the party.
Be Your Own Butler
Don’t let people clutter up your entryway with purses and coats. Use your bedroom or a guest room and ask guests to put their things in this room when they arrive. You can use a portable hanging rack to allow people to hang coats and scarves without piling them on a bed. This allows you to leave the bed empty for purses and other loose or awkward items.
Keep the bar simple – you don’t want to be making mixed drinks for a large group! Set up a space where guests can help themselves and offer basic choices: red and white wine, one or two types of beer, and punch or iced tea. Buy ice rather than using your freezer to make it so that you know you have enough, and keep a bucket of ice and an ice scoop near the bar. You can also use frozen plastic ice cubes to avoid the need to constantly refill your ice bucket.
Keep it Portable
The more guests that attend, the harder it becomes to create enough space at a dining table (and to get everyone to sit down at once). Choose light plastic or paper plates and dishes and create food that can be easily eaten with your fingers. Rather than setting up a single buffet table and forcing everyone to wait in line for food, clear your tables and countertops of clutter and place food in several different places around your space. Not only does this allow people to eat without the wait, but it also encourages mingling as your guests move about the room to explore different flavors.
Consider the Potluck
Rather than spending two days in the kitchen before the party (and all night washing dishes) think about asking guests to bring finger foods and whatever they would like to drink. Make a cooler handy so that guests can keep their beverages cool without cluttering up your refrigerator. You’ll also want to talk with guests to make sure you don’t end up with several food items that are all the same, items that need to be reheated or chilled, or food that will be hard to eat.
All any good party really needs is a happy host, so go ahead and invite the whole family and fill your space, no matter what size, with joy!