I enjoy putting together a special party for my friends during the month of July. Every year I think of a theme and then start my planning. This year the theme is celebration of good friends and good books. I have asked my guests to bring a book or two that they have enjoyed, tell why they enjoyed the book, and swap it out for a book that someone else brings. My theme helps me get my vision of the party in my mind. I now know what I want my party to look like and how I want to feel at the party. I want my party to be casual, comfortable, and engaging. I want my guests and myself to feel relaxed and happy. Next I brainstorm all the tasks I need to complete in order for this vision to come true. I start with my guest list. Then I plan my invitations and have them made. Other items on my list will include: address and send invites, plan dates to do extra yard work, get help with yard work, pressure wash my house and deck, freshen up lawn furniture, plan menu, prepare/order food/beverages, get help and put up tent, clean house, decorate, spray yard, last minute runs for items at store, get help putting out food/beverage stations. I know that my decorations will include books and that I will want a table for guests to put their books on when they arrive. After I have brainstormed all I can think of that I need to do, I make a time-line. I call and see who can assist me when/where I need help. I post my time-line and check it off as I go. I allow some wiggle room – after all it might be raining when I plan to do yard work or the person who is going to help on a certain day finds they can’t help then but can help later. When the day of the party arrives, there is little to do except finish decorating, putting out food/beverages, and spraying the yard for bugs. By breaking down the party project into small, manageable parts, and putting together a reasonable time-line, I make the party stress free. When the guests come, I am ready to party too.
Jonda S. Beattie Professional Organizer