Summary : How to Host a Party and Handle House Guests By Judith Brown

1. Keep a record of the parties and get-togethers you've given, along with guest lists and menus and what aspects of the event were-or weren't-a success. It will make useful reading next time you plan to entertain.

2. If you plan a menu of limited courses, everything can be set out buffet style. That way you'll be able to enjoy the meal along with your guests, instead of running back and forth to serve.

3. Remember to keep non-alcoholic drinks- juices, soda, etc.-on hand for guests who don't drink alcohol.

4. An easy and pleasurable way to entertain is to invite friends to your home for a relaxing Sunday brunch.

5. Invite your friends to a make-a-pizza party and see how creative you all can be.

6. Don't try out a new recipe on guests. Prepare it first for family members or close friends.

7. Make your buffet convenient for you and your guests by wrapping place settings of silverware in napkins and placing them in a basket.

8. Ice will last longer for a party if you first freeze an inch of water in the bottom of the ice bucket.

9. Your guests will always remember your parties if you send them picture postcards of themselves. As each person enters the party, snap a photo. But only send flattering photographs.

10. For a festive holiday get-together, have a Christmas cookie exchange. Invite neighbors and friends and ask them to bring some of the favorite cookies.

11. Holiday shopping won't seem a hassle if you can schedule your shopping excursions at off hours: right after the stores open, in mid-afternoon (2:30-4:30 P.M.), or late enough in the evening to avoid the after-work crowd. Try to avoid the crowds on weekends and lunch hours.

12. You'll always have little gifts on hand if you remember to buy doubles of things you need yourself. Such items as jellies and preserves, correspondence notes, and toiletries make suitable gifts. You can also take advantage of sale items and specials that look like suitable standby gifts.

13. Make a loaf of bread and wrap it up along with a jar of homemade preserves as a delicious and practical gift.