How to Plan a Gathering for Family and Friends

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Sometimes, you don't need a reason to hold a party. It doesn't have to be a holiday or someone's birthday to give you an excuse to get festive. Hold a gathering for family and friends to let them know just how much you care.

The Setting

Get creative when thinking about where to hold a gathering for family and friends. Everyone has probably already been to your house at least once or twice. What about holding the event in a special place?

If you're getting the girls together, find out if there's a restaurant or bar that offers ladies-only specials on a particular day of the week. Make the reservation, and contact all of your friends. If you're in charge, you'll take the hassle out of planning the event for your other friends.

Put together an all-day park picnic. Make a list of finger foods that are easy to eat, and assign everyone a recipe to make and bring. Ask everyone to bring a beach chair as well as an outdoor toy or game, like Frisbee, Bocce, horseshoes or even Twister. Drag along a canopy for shade and set it up on a grassy field while you play the day away. This is a great way for adults to let their cares go and play like kids again.

The Food

Although the type of food that you serve depends on the setting, one of the easiest ways to cater a gathering for family and friends is to make it a pot-luck deal. Help your guests stress less by letting them know that you'll take care of the cocktail bar, or perhaps you'll make all of the appetizers.

The Decor

One way to simplify the decor is to designate a theme for the get-together. Buy everything for the theme in one place, or designate an item that each guest can bring. When you put it all together, you'll have a festive, well-decorated gathering.

Hosting a gathering for family and friends is a great way to make time for those you love. No one will mind bringing a dish or decor item, because you made the effort to sift through everyone's excuses and schedules to bring all of your loved ones together.

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