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How to host a last-minute New Year's Eve party

New Year’s Eve tiaras, placed strategically, is a fun way to spruce up your party décor. Photo credit: Gwyn Nielsen

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Pop! Clink! Drink! New Year's Eve is almost here. Why not host your own party to usher in the new year with friends and family?  Here are a few cheap and easy tips to throw your own bash in a flash.

Make a plan. Grab a notebook and a pencil to jot down a guest list, an easy menu and a few ideas for décor and ambiance. Think about what you already have in your home that you can use. Then make a shopping list of what you will need to purchase.

The invitation. You're going to need a head count in order to plan accordingly. Facebook Events, Paperless Post and Evite are three free options for fast responses. Consider a separate text or email to let your guests know they have an invitation awaiting them. This is also an avenue to gently let them know you need a quick response. Try adding this line, "Thank you in advance for a quick response. I have a few fabulous ideas that take planning, and I don't want you to miss out." I'd also add it to the bottom of the official invitation.

The menu. Keep it simple and serve both savory and sweet bite-sized foods. This will give you more time to mingle, and everything can be ready to go before your guests arrive. Create a display of these goodies on a countertop where there is plenty of room for easy access. In addition, position plates of these small bites around your home for snacking here and there. Plenty of food adds a touch of splendor to any party.

Pinterest is a wonderful place to get ideas for both savory and sweet food. Visit the Everything New Year's Eve and Everything Tapas boards on Pinterest at Gwyn_@SparklingCharm.  

For drinks, add a unique touch. Create your own cocktail for the celebration and give it a special name. Look in your own cabinets first and see what you already have for your concoction.

If you are interested in a fabulous finale just before the clock strikes midnight, instead of champagne, head to sparklingcharm.com for the Champagne Sparkle Shots recipe. Not only is it a show-stopper, it's a mouth-watering treat, too.

Décor and ambiance. Think simple. Place New Year's Eve tiaras, sparkly hats, 2018 glasses and noise makers randomly around your home for people to wear and have fun with throughout the evening. Consider setting up a selfie spot with these fun items, too.

Make a party play list and plan the progression of your choices. Start with lively music as guests arrive. Play dance tunes just loud enough to get your guests moving and singing in place while they mingle. Lastly, end the night with soothing music. You can find a New Year's Party Play List at sparklingcharm.com.

Happy party planning! May 2018 be filled with astounding Sparkle and Charm.

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