I was invited to happy hour yesterday afternoon. According to the email, it was a meet and mingle event. Only the gal who was introducing and organizing everyone ended up bailing! Not showing up to a party you are hosting is NOT okay, and should be considered a major party foul. If you schedule an event and something comes up, be sure to notify all of your guests or designate the hostess duties to a friend. What do you guys think? Is canceling at the last minute better than being a hostess flake?
When handling stemware, such as wine and champagne glasses, be careful. It's super easy to get caught up in the moment of toasting, being fabulous, and having a little too much wine. This very thing happened to me last week when I was out with some girlfriends. I was so excited that I downed the rest of my Pinot Grigio in one gulp and slammed the wine glass on the bar a teeny bit too hard. The glass broke, the gals laughed, and I was left feeling horribly embarrassed (and it's not the first time I've done it!). Remember that glass is fragile and unless you want a wet messy splattering of dangerous shards at your next fiesta, set down those glasses lightly, and toast with care.
How about you? Have you ever broken a glass during a toast?
I recently attended a graduation party where the majority of the food was crammed onto one teeny little table. The chips were on another table so if you wanted dip with your chip, you had to carry it from one side of the room to the other. To make matters worse, the guest were crowding around the food table blocking the walkway, door to the outside, and access to the refrigerator! The party lacked flow, cliques formed and mingling was awkward and uncomfortable. I pulled the hostess' best friend aside and explained to her the importance of stations at a party.
Set the food on different tables throughout the house. Map it out. Some outside, some inside, some here, some there. Separating the food gives guests something to do and mobilizes them around the party. A general comfortable flow in which guests move freely, greet one another, and interact will never occur if you plop all of the food and drinks in one area. So next time you plan your party, keep that in mind and everything will go swimmingly!
I'm not a huge fan of processed or packaged foods and drinks. However I make one exception for Nestea iced tea mix, which I absolutely love. Today is National Iced Tea Day and whatever way you like your iced tea, you should treat yourself to a big sweating glass. If you're at a friend's house and offered a glass of iced tea when you in fact don't like it, just say no. I think it's ruder to pretend to like something you don't, rather than to deny it in the first place.
This always come to mind when I think of Nestea because I once served a glass to a girlfriend who hated it. She suffered through half the glass before bursting out, "Yuck I I can't take anymore of this - I hate iced tea!" I was horrified and heart broken, she wouldn't have hurt my feelings if she had said no in the first place.
If you pretend to love a certain food that you don't like, the hostess might note this and make it each time you come over. To really respect your hostess, when it comes to expressing your feelings towards food: make them clear about what you do and do not like.
What do you guys think, do you agree with me?
It may seem a little ironic: first I told you not to show up early to an event and now I'm highlighting the importance of not showing up too late to a party.
This rule should be remembered and practiced for dinner parties especially. Your hostess has taken the time to create a meal and has specified it will begin at a certain time, so be there and ready to eat at that time. A dried out roast chicken and cold pasta are what you have to look forward to when arriving late to a party, and you are not only taking advantage of your hostess, but you are disrespecting your fellow guests. If you are running late - for whatever reason - you owe the hostess a courtesy call to let her know you will be there after the party's start time. Showing up more than a half an hour late for a dinner party, and an hour late for a cocktail party without a quick phone call is unacceptable. If you come to a party late without calling, trusting that the hostess is exceptional, do not expect to be invited to more of her parties in the future.
An important part of being a great hostess is understanding what it's like to be a great guest. The first step towards becoming an excellent guest is knowing when to arrive at the party. When hosting a dinner or an event, there is nothing I hate more than people whom show up early unannounced. Invitations are sent with a specific starting time for a reason and if your hostess is anything like myself she is running around adding finishing touches to her sauces, plating bite sized appetizers, polishing wine glasses, and lighting candles. (My aunt came 30 minutes early for a dinner once and the appetizers were still in the oven, I wasn't dressed and had curlers in my hair-you can imagine my complete and total mortification). Coming before the space and hostess is transformed into party ready is a complete and total no-no. Just don't do it. Unless personally asked by the hostess, do not come early and if for some crazy reason you end up getting off the freeway twenty minutes before the specified time call her to let her know there was no traffic and you will be arriving early so she can at least put on her party outfit and set out a bowl of olives.
Last Friday FabSugar invited me to a fashion show that bad boy designer Zac Posen was going to be at. Thinking the (front row!) seats with our names would be waiting for us, we stayed in the pre-show party area (with the handsome mayor!) until the last minute. When we walked into the tent the stands were over flowed and crowded, none of the ushers had seating charts, and when we approached the host (aka event planner) he looked like a deer in headlights. He didn't find us seats and didn't apologize for the disorganization and when I told him (as one party planner to another) that I was appalled by his behavior, he turned and walked away!!
Moral(s) of the story: always print out seating charts at large events for the wait staff, always remain cool and collected when frazzled guests approach you with dilemmas, and always apologize for making a guest feel uncomfortable or unwanted. A great host is someone who makes one feel warm, loved and like they belong, so remember that at your next party.