Every year I dream of hosting a fancy Christmas party.

You know the kind I’m talking about, right?

I’m talking about festive music, twinkling lights, specialty cheeses, mistletoe and spontaneous caroling – not to mention all my friends, family and neighbors mingling throughout my house, laughing and talking and generally having the best time they’ve ever had at a party.


That was my bubble bursting . . . just like it does every year.

Though the idea comes up every year, I don’t spend too much time daydreaming about a lovely holiday gathering, because I remember parties like that are impossible.

My house is too small.
I hate cleaning.
I don’t know how to cook fancy holiday food.
My friends are too busy.
The weather might be bad.
My neighbors could get annoyed about the extra cars.
It takes so much time to decorate.
My cats don’t like company.
Christmas music gives me a headache.

See? Planning a holiday party really isn’t possible, practical, doable for me. Or is it?

Actually, planning a holiday party is completely attainable goal for any of us. And not just any party – You can plan a fabulous party.

Does that sound like wishful thinking?

I hear you. I’ve held New Year’s Eve parties where nobody showed up except my best friend and my brother. I’ve hosted family dinners where the main dish turned into the main disaster. And I’ve stressed out about matching tablecloths and napkins, an equal number of sweet and salty snacks, and the perfect playlist more than once. (I’ve also spent way too much money and yelled at my family way too often over these same things!)

Thankfully, I’ve learned that planning parties – whether it’s your family’s holiday dinner, a white elephant gift exchange for your Sunday school class or an office open house for all your clients – doesn’t have to be so painful.

That’s why I’ve written Plan a Fabulous Party {without losing your mind}.

I can’t control the weather, teach you to cook like The Pioneer Woman or ban your crazy brother-in-law from all family gatherings. But I can teach you a simple step-by-step process for planning any kind of party, and help you ditch your reluctance (or panic!) for confidence and success.

Even though I’ve acquired a long list of to-dos and not-to-dos when it comes to planning successful events, my desire is to speak to your heart, not simply your to-do list. As a recovering perfectionist (and veteran “I’ll plan the shower!” volunteer), I know that the best-laid plans and most meticulous event timeline won’t mean squat if you walk into your event holding a bucket full of outrageous expectations and unprepared for real life.

Plan a Fabulous Party {without losing your mind} will walk you through the steps involved in planning any type of party and leave you prepared to handle unexpected complications or challenges (without freaking out!). I’ve included questions to prompt you through each step of the planning process, reminders of possible stumbling blocks and surprises and a checklist to use for each of your fabulous events.

You just might find yourself enjoying your own party.

I’m excited to share with you what I’ve learned about planning parties – fabulous parties – over the years, and I just know you can do it, too, without losing your mind. It takes a little work, a lot of preparation and a healthy dose of patience (and possibly some deep breathing techniques), but planning a fabulous party without losing your mind is absolutely possible and totally worth it.

Until December 31, use the code INPARTYBOOK for a 20% discount on Plan a Fabulous Party {without losing your mind}. Meanwhile, I have some invitations to send.

Are you planning a holiday party this season? Are you excited, anxious – or both?

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  • http://www.toodarnhappy.com/ Kim

    I was just talking about this with my friends yesterday, how so many of us are “NCAMH” (no company at my house). We are so concerned about what others will think about our home, our food, that there is just so much to do and have go wrong, that we don’t host gatherings. We all agreed it was silly, and hopefully we will really embrace friends, in singles and multiples, expected and unexpected, at our door!

    Love the idea for your book-it sounds most encouraging for those of us with the fear of hosting!

    • http://www.givinguponperfect.com Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect

      Much as I love hosting parties of all shapes and sizes, I sometimes fall into that NCAMH category, too! I think the key is remembering that our friends and family want to spend time with us – and they’re not judging our homes, our food or anything that might not go according to plan. I hope you have the opportunity to invite some people into your home soon!

  • http://www.chasingblueskies.net Kristen

    I *love* the way you wrap your amazing sense of humor all over your inspiring *and* practical tips. Thank you for sharing your wisdom with us, girl! You are amazing. xo

  • http://www.chasingblueskies.net Kristen

    I *love* the way you wrap your amazing sense of humor all over your inspiring *and* practical tips. Thank you for sharing your wisdom with us, girl! You are amazing. xo

    • http://www.givinguponperfect.com Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect

      Awww, thank you, friend!

  • http://www.family6-time.blogspot.com/ Suanna

    I haven’t read your book, but it sounds great. I have 4 events planned at my house this month. I’m looking forward to them all. The first one was last weekend. It was a blast. The next one is this weekend. It should be fun, too. No my house isn’t perfectly clean, nor is the decor the most fabulous, I ask guests to help with food and we just have an atmosphere of enjoying each other and the season. Last year my house was too small, but that’s part of the charm (we’ve had as many as 18-25 people in less than 1300 sq. ft) and this year we have a new house with plenty of room an a great layout. All our events also include children.

    • http://www.givinguponperfect.com Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect

      Congrats on your new house – and for being brave enough to host 4 events in one month! :) I think asking guests to bring food is the best way to do any party!

  • Donna

    Wow – Your reasons are MINE exactly – ALL of them! I am a very good planner, presenter, and hostess for others and for my job; however, for me? Read the first sentence again :). However, I have been thoroughly convicted by the Scripture admonition (I Pet. 4:9) to use hospitality one to another, of remembering that the best times I had was when my extremely tiny place was crammed with young people sitting on top of one another and not wanting to leave because it was so comfortable and felt homey (18 teens in an 800 sf house). I know many folks who are without and lonely – and honestly, they really don’t inspect my house – they just want fun and to feel like they belong. Thanks for your wonderful reminder!

  • http://www.jumpingtandem.com Deidra

    Yes! What Kristen said! I love your book, your sense of humor, your wonderful advice, your YOU!

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