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Today we are going to answer YOUR questions. Here we go:
1. How do you store all your stuff? Do you have a dedicated cupboard for all your party stuff (decorations, banners) stuff like that or do you not reuse stuff from year to year?
A great place where I store many of my party supplies is in our buffet. It’s a large piece of furniture that is a statement piece, but is also functional with it’s drawers and cupboards. In one drawer of the buffet I store paper supplies such as napkins, straws, paper plates, and cutlery. Another drawer houses the linen tablecloths and serving platters. The side cupboards are tall enough for me to stash vases in.
Decorations are stored in plastic containers and tubs. Yes, I reuse decorations, but I also love to make new additions or buy things from time to time (especially if it’s on clearance at the end of the season I can’t resist!)
Melissa says: Oh, I definitely reuse stuff from year to year. There is no way I could re-create everything each year. I try and add one new thing each holiday and throw out anything that is broken or I don’t use anymore.
I store all of my holiday decorations in big containers.
They aren’t anything fancy, but they are sturdy and are big enough to store large items. I have one for spring holidays (Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, and 4th of July), one for Fall holidays (Halloween and Thanksgiving) and 2 for Christmas.
For banners, instead of storing them in the big bins (I’m afraid they will rip and tear), I use this binder. I have a page protector to hold each one. It’s nice to have them all in one place and very accessible.
Over the years, I have collected serving ware that I store in one cupboard in our kitchen (besides a few larger items that I keep in a closet). These are things I use over and over. Most of my stuff is white or silver because then it can match any color scheme.
Finally, I store my party supplies in a these boxes I got from IKEA. Anytime I come across cheap stuff, I pick it up and store it in here. I keep one for general party stuff and then I use smaller ones to organize for a certain party or holiday that is coming up.
2. Do you sit down at the beginning of the year/month and plan out your festive parties and celebrations? Or are many of them spontaneous and last minute?
There are so many holidays big and little to celebrate and we always love an excuse to do something fun. At the beginning of the year I actually sit down and write on the calendar major holidays as well as different ones we like to celebrate so that I can remember ahead of time. Of course we like to be spontaneous too.
Smaller holidays include Cinco de Mayo, Mardi Gras, Pie Day, Cinco de Mayo, National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, or a famous person’s birthday. This year the Winter Olympics happened and we celebrated during the Opening Ceremonies. There’s pretty much a holiday for anything out there you can think of. Check out the top right of the So Festive blog to find out what today is and be spontaneous in celebrating it.
Melissa says: Over the years, we have decided what is important to us to celebrate. Birthdays are a big deal, along with the major holidays. We also have a few extra celebrations though out the year that have become traditions like Pie Day, our Spudnut party, and German Advent.
Because we have to eat dinner anyway, I try and incorporate simple celebrations into our meal plan. For example, we will eat pancakes on National Pancake Day and Beignets on Mardi Gras. However, sometimes I totally forget and miss a smaller holiday. But that’s okay. There is always next year.
At the beginning of each month, I add what celebrations we want to do to our calendar.
3. Do you have any etsy shops or websites you like to order party supplies from?
Petite Party Studio is one of my favorite places to shop. They have the cutest store in Arizona and also an online shop. If you’re ever in the area, you have to stop by. Their online shop sells adorable party supplies and their etsy shop is full of party printables and invitations.
Locally, I’m always a big fan of Target and IKEA. At Target, there’s often party supplies on clearance and I always stop to look there. Even if I don’t need something specific at that very moment, if it’s 50% off and I know I’ll use it at a later date, then I buy it. At IKEA they have great napkins and straws.
Melissa says: My favorite online shops for party supplies are The Plaid Barn and Pick Your Plum. They have different deals each week, so it is hit or miss. However, I have found really cheap party supplies through them.
I also love Old Town Imports for nice serving ware that I can reuse again and again.
Although I have not ordered from them yet, Koyal Wholesale has a lot of fun and reasonably priced party goods.
Lastly, Dollar Stores and Target Dollar Spot are where I get 90% of my party stuff.
4. What are your favorite celebrations?
Birthdays are a big deal at our house. We love to focus on the individual and make them feel super special for the entire day.
Every celebration doesn’t have to be planned or elaborate. We like to celebrate events that are current in our lives. When we found out we were having a baby, we went out and bought a little outfit. After my husband finishes giant exams at school, we go out for dinner. When we move to a new area, we explore and look for fun things to do. At the beginning of the year we each picked a goal to work on. When we finish the goal, we will go do an activity to celebrate all together. It’s a great incentive to accomplish the goal.
Melissa says: Of course I like all the big holidays, but sometimes my favorite are the simple, everyday ones. When my husband got a promotion, I decided to throw a congratulations dinner. This idea came very last minute, so all I did was throw some confetti on a plate with a little congrats sign. It was simple, but it helped make the occasion more special.
I also love celebrating birthdays. I have a had a few bad birthday experiences and ever since those, I decided I would always try to make other people’s birthdays special.
5. What are your favorite birthday traditions?
For birthdays we pick out our favorite meals for the day as well as the cake. The ‘You Are Special Today‘ red plate is used for all the meals. We sing 5 verses of Happy Birthday and every person in the family tells the birthday individual what they love about them. We often pick a theme for the decor.
Melissa says: Our birthday traditions are similar from year to year. The Birthday Fairy leaves quarters in our shoe, we get to choose breakfast, dinner, and cake, we put up the Birthday Banner, and do a family activity. This year, we did a Birthday Door for my little guy and he loved it. I think we’ll do it again.
Click below if you’ve missed any of the previous lessons in this A to Z series!