I love celebrating Christmas and decorating my home. But I don’t always have Christmas at home. We don’t have any children and often travel to spend Christmas with family members who do. So I am always looking for ways to experience Christmas with friends.
I have tried to have full Christmas parties or barbecues, but people are often pressed for time around Christmas with work functions (both office parties and invitations to stakeholder functions), end of school year concerts, graduations etc. Struggling to fit a full Christmas party into anyone’s schedule I began arranging a Christmas decorating parties.
The idea came from an impromptu Christmas decorating party which happened when family came round for pizza. My recollection is that the kids who lived in Wellington talked to the kids who didn’t about my legendary Christmas decorations and by the end of the evening the tree was up and decorated.
I tweaked the idea of Christmas decorating parties a bit from this accidental beginning. I invited people to come around at any time from the afternoon onwards, I promised simple snack food, chicken wings, crudités. We would be putting up the tree and they could help or just sit and chat.
It helps to have done a bit of preparation first. I suggest:
- setting the tree up, i.e. fetching it from the basement if its plastic or getting a live tree firmly standing in the container off your choice
- bringing the decorations out of their hiding places
- setting up a step ladder
- having a lot of fixings available, paper clips for baubles that have lost their strings, sellotape, blu-tack and hooks to attach decorations around the room
- opening boxes of decorations so that you have a good idea of what’s in them before people arrive.
We got the stepladder out before they arrived
I generally do some cooking for a Christmas decorating party, but I’m always looking for an excuse to bake. It’s fine to order in.
The best thing about putting up your decorations with company is that other people have different ideas. Every time I’ve held one of these parties I’ve ended up with things I didn’t expect and was better than I would have done by myself.
I didn’t notice the baubles in the fruit bowl until everyone had gone
You don’t need very many people and at the end of the evening you feel like you’ve really achieved something.
Last year we watched Home Alone on Netflix while putting the tree up. This year my lovely sister in law is hosting and I am going to help with her tree.