Everyone loves a good party but things can get a little stressful when you are hosting one for yourself. It can be difficult to manage all the aspects of the party adequately to ensure that it all runs smoothly and everyone enjoys themselves. Before the day of the day of the party, make plenty of time to check over all the details and this will ensure that the party goes off without a hitch.
When planning your party you should start out by deciding on an appropriate theme. Don't feel obliged to choose something elaborate - even if there is a reason why you and your friends are celebrating then this could be enough of a theme. Perhaps someone is returning home from traveling, a friend could be announcing their engagement or it could simply be because you have recently moved in and want to meet the neighbors. Whatever the reason, decide what theme is right for you then you will be able to plan the rest of the party around it.
Next you will need to send out the invitations. The amount of time leave before sending out the invitations and when the date of the party depends on how large a gathering you are planning. For a small social gathering you should leave at least 2 weeks with larger, more elaborate parties requiring extra notice as people will need to make sure that they are available.
While you are planning the party, an important factor to take into consideration is the atmosphere. Of course parties should be fun and your surroundings should reflect this. If you are hosting the dinner party at home then you should take a good look around you to see what looks out of place. Perhaps you have lots of trinkets and decorations cluttering your shelves and bookcases - these should be stored away and perhaps replaced with more appropriate decorative items. It goes without saying that you should provide adequate seating for your guests.
Another important task is to schedule the events taking place at your party. Make sure that there is enough time for your guests to arrive before the evening's events kick off. If your party is focused around a televised sporting event then it is sensible to have your guests around around 30 minutes before the event starts. However, if you are planning a sit down meal then you may want to leave a little more time to allow time for latecomers.
It's a good idea to plan your list of food and do the shopping a few days before the party. Any dishes that can be made in advance and frozen food will save you plenty of time on the day of the party. If you are hosting a particularly large gathering then it may be sensible to hire someone to take care of the catering. If this is the case then make sure they are fully briefed as to the details of party.
Double check all the details the night before your party. This will be made easier if you have made yourself a checklist. On the day of the party be sure that you dress yourself early to save any last minute dashing and bear in mind that some guests may arrive early. Greet all of your guests in person and welcome them into your home. Make sure that you enjoy yourself, smile, have fun and it will no doubt rub off on everyone else!