Many people throw a Christmas party with little to no thought given to what’s expected of them at such a party. As a hostess you have a larger responsibility than just making sure everyone has a good time. There’s much more to it than that, at least if you want to be the perfect hostess!
Send the invitations out in plenty of time – at least three weeks in advance. During the Christmas holidays, lots of people have many socials to attend, so they will need plenty of notice if you expect them to show up at yours. Don’t forget to mention in the invitations where people should park and any other specifics. If it’s a non-alcoholic party mention that, too. Some people like to bring their own favorite liquor or other drink and that could cause problems if they don’t know that drinking is unacceptable at the party.
Welcome each and every one of your guests when they arrive. As the hostess, you can’t be off somewhere, talking to your best friend while guests arrive greeted by a housekeeper, a caterer, or one of the other guests.
Under few circumstances should a hostess ever ask her guests to remove their shoes! Unless it’s customary in a country where you all live, this is unacceptable! Now, if someone is wearing galoshes or bulky snow boots you can ask them to remove them, but have new slippers to offer them instead. You’ll have to vacuum the carpets after the party, and in many cases, the carpets need to be cleaned after the celebration. Drinks get spilled at parties, and often, the carpets have to be cleaned anyway. No one wants to get all dressed up for the holidays, and buy that new pair of fabulous shoes, only to be asked to remove them!
If there is alcohol at your Christmas party it is your responsibility to make sure that guests don’t get too inebriated. No matter what, you don’t let people drive away from your home after drinking. Many hostesses ask their guests to place their car keys in a basket when they arrive. That way, the hostess can evaluate the condition of her guests before giving them back their keys. In some states, a person can be held legally accountable should a guest drive away from her home while intoxicated, and a wreck happen.
Don’t spend too much time talking to one or a few people. Spread yourself around and be sure to talk to each guest at some point during the party. Also, personally say “good-bye” to each guest or couple as they leave. Tell them you were glad to have them at the party and thank them for coming.
Being a hostess for a Christmas party – or any celebration – is more than just putting out some foods and sending out invitations. It’s your job to make sure each person felt welcome, had a great time, and arrives home safely!