Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas Parties

'Tis the Season! One of the great joys of the holiday season is throwing or attending Christmas parties. Be it a brunch, cocktail party, tree-trimming event, or formal dinner, people tend to entertain more this time of year than the rest of the year combined. It is a festive atmosphere, the house looks dressed to the nines, and people want to connect having time off and a reason to celebrate. If you have never, time to host your own party! At the very least, attend one!
Too often I hear people state that they are miserable they have to attend their work Christmas party. What a shame. It used to be a terrific gesture on the part of the bosses to cease work for the afternoon or to block off an evening and celebrate. Think back to any version of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol and Fezziwig's Christmas Party is always a wondrous scene. In today's economy Christmas work parties have been scaled back, but many are still having some special event - drinks instead of lunch, workers only instead of family included - to mark the end of the year and the joy of the season. This is an event not to be missed! Get involved. If there is a gift exchange, participate! Stick to your budget, buy the best your money can afford, and proudly place it for the exchange. Perhaps your business is hosting a toy drive wherein the people buy a toy that fits the personality of someone at your place of work and that person gets to open the toy. Once it is revealed then it goes to Toys For Tots. This is creative and still charitable!
Friends having a party? Attend and get excited about it! Dress in your Christmas finery - leave the black in your closet, whip out something bright, cheerful, and colorful. Bring a hostess gift, perhaps a great new Christmas album, homemade comfection or appetizer, or new Christmas ornament; something for the kids in the house, a Christmas coloring book and crayons, a new game, or tall chocolate Santa, and a great mood. This is Christmas so act like it! Your friends have cleaned, decorated, and opened their home, so show up ready to have a great time!
Never hosted before? Well, this is your year! Issue an invitation to as many people you can comfortably stuff... I mean fit into your home. Deck your halls, don your 'gay apparel' and just have fun. No one cares if you are a gourmet cook, if your house passes the "white glove test" or if your tree isn't Martha Stewart perfect, they just are thrilled to have somewhere fun to go over the holidays. Offer a potluck if you are a terrible cook. Offer your space and the drinks and have everyone invited bring something - no one will mind! Play games of Christmas trivia, Name That Christmas Carol, and Christmas Bingo. Have prizes (raid your best Dollar Store for this). Tell everyone in advance to bring one wrapped gift for an exchange. Set an appropriate dollar amount. Once everyone is gathered give each person a number (say 1-8 if you have 8 people total). Number one gets to choose a wrapped gift and open it. Number two can either pick a wrapped gift from the pile that is left or steal Number one's gift. This goes on all the way through to Number 8. This game is loads of fun and keeps the guests laughing the entire time! Make sure you make a "no gag gifts" rule so everyone winds up with a good gift.
Christmas can be a joyous, festive, and relaxing time if we allow it to be. I know, first hand, how sad, depressing, stressful, and frustrating it can be, but by countering those emotions and stresses with events meant to uplift you the holiday season can be rather enjoyable. Collecting toys, money, and food for charity can be the focus of your party and that helps everyone feel useful during the holidays and takes the focus off of our own personal problems. Spreading holiday cheer and "walking the walk" also helps alleviate stress and sadness. Isolating magnifies problems, but socializing actually has so many positive benefits that 'partying' is good for you! Keep alcohol at bay (a natural depressant that does NOT make you feel better) and concentrate on the best part of the Christmas season.
My husband and I host a lot of engagements over the holidays. We are starting this weekend. I can't wait to get this holiday started, see my friends, and welcome the Christmas season into my home. I hope if you throw a party and/ or attend one, you'll simply enjoy yourself!


  1. Let's get this party started!

    Don't bother to clean before hand, we're gonna make a mess anyway!

  2. We start on Dec.10 at the Antique Automobile Club of America winter party. Time to dust off the red tie and suit. The last party will not be until Jan. when CAM has their winter party with guest speaker George Fulmer. CAM ran out of available dates in Dec. Looking forward to your parties.

  3. Going to the 1st Christmas party on Saturday I'll probably use your wiener recipe from yesterday !

  4. I love Cocktail Wieners! I could eat those everyday for a year.