Christmas is the best time to organize a gathering with friends and family. For the last two weeks, we shared the importance of spending time with loved ones. The first step is to reach out by sending a text message or a phone call to show you are missing them and would like to stay in touch. Occasionally it is nice to gather with a few friends and family. There is a spirit of excitement and much to share during the gathering. How do we do that? How do we start?
Make a list:
Firstly, make a list of all the people who you want to invite to this gathering. It may be a small group of five to ten people or as large as 80-100 people. The size of the venue determines how many people to invite to that party. Small gatherings are intimate and more time is spent with each person. You could also plan a few small meet-ups with different groups of friends with common interests. Decide if you want to have one large gathering or one or two small gatherings, then list the names of those you would like to invite.
There are many places to have a gathering. The outdoor venues such as parks for a picnic or a BBQ. The indoor venues like a cafe, restaurant, or at home. When deciding on a place, there are a few areas to consider. For example, the best time for a picnic in the park is during the day and not at night when it is dark. And if so, picnics are usually on the weekend or a holiday. Checking the weather is also vital for any outdoor venue. When choosing a place, think about the number of people you are hosting and the time of the party.
Deciding on the time also depends on the venue. However, if you meet indoors, there is the night option. Having the gathering at night also means you can meet up during the weekdays, especially for small group gatherings. Friends can gather after work for dinner, especially on a Friday night. When deciding on the time, consider if you are inviting families with children because that would determine if it is too late for them. If so, you might want to meet up earlier instead. Consider these factors before deciding on the time. Or ask what time and day are best to meet up. Sometimes discussing the time and place with friends and family is the best for everyone.
The amount of work you need to prepare as a host depends on the venue and type of event. Planning a BBQ, picnic, or hosting at home requires some preparation as a host.
Below is a Basic Checklist for hosting a gathering at home so as not to overwhelm you if you are considering hosting at home.
The Basic Checklist for hosting at home:
- Party details: Date, Day, and Time
First, start with deciding the date, day, and time you would like to host the event. Choose a time when you know your guest would most likely be able to attend.
- Guest List
Then, decide how many people you would like to host. List down all the names of your guests, including children. Consider if children are attending when planning the type of foods to serve and the type of dishware. You would also want to consider avoiding breakable decorations and fire-lit candles for the safety of the children and home. I love inviting children, and I always think of their safety first.
- Food List
When deciding on the menu, consider if there are any guests with food intolerance or allergies. It is always a good idea to find out from your friends. You can’t possibly cater to all, so serve one or two gluten-free or allergen-free as an option. Usually, those who have specific dietary requirements are careful when choosing the foods they can eat. If possible, avoid serving certain foods of high allergens to your guests.
A simple way to create a warm and cozy environment at home is with warm lights and soft instrumental music. Light up some candles. There are battery-operated candles as an option. Turn on some instrumental music while you are hosting. Have it play softly. These tips will add to making the home feel welcome and relaxed. Cleanliness is fundamental too. Check your toilet and the rest of the home are clean before your guest arrives.
- Add ons
Here are some bonus tips to make your guest feel extra special.
- Party games can be exciting and fun to break the ice at any gathering. There are many game ideas that you can find online.
- Gift exchange is another good idea, especially during Christmas.
- Door gifts are a great way to say ‘thank you for coming, and it was lovely to have you.
I hope these ideas inspire you to plan a gathering with loved ones and have a great time creating memories with them.
Merry Christmas and God bless you.