Our daughter graduated high school this year, class of 2017 and I still can not believe it. Senior year was like a world-wind. It was all S.A.T.’s, prom-dresses, senior pictures, finals and puff – you were done. Where did the time go? Yet, as fast as it went by, we tried to take it all in, trust me, because it really is a special time. A time to celebrate.
We threw Allison a graduation party, and for some crazy reason decided to do it at our home. I spent a lot of time questioning that decision, and feeling totally out of my league. There are just so many details to a good grad party. Yet, because of the five tips below, and countless support filled emails, calls and texts to my sister, and aunt, we somehow pulled it off. And, it turned out to be a pretty great party.
1. Prepare and make what you can ahead of time.
We were lucky to have an empty room in our house, so we decorated and set up tables a week in advance. It sounds simple, but it really relieved a lot of stress on the actual party day.
2. Let those who ask help you.
This was a hard one for me. When I host a party or gathering, I like to do everything myself. This time as the party dates grew closer, and friends and family asked if I needed help, I spoke up. I let my dad run a few errands, and one of my best friends came over and made one of the main food dishes a day before the party, letting me focus on the cleaning.
3. Buy resale and borrow from friends.
I hit the jackpot here. I bought several items on our local Facebook resale group. Having kids in the neighborhood graduate in the same year, I was able to score a lot of fun items with our school colors for less than half the price. Like these fun center pieces, which were perfect and already put together. We also borrowed a few big items from friends and family that offered, like food warmers, tables and even a large outdoor tent. What a big help!
4. Order supplies online.
With just a few clicks, I received a lot of our party supplies and decorations from Oriental Trading. They are like a one stop shop, that offers high quality party supplies, decorations, games, treats and even gifts. Shopping on their website saved me a lot of time and aggravation. It was nice to come home from work and find everything in one large box on our porch.
5. Except that life is not a Pinterest board, you don’t need that kind of pressure.
I started surfing and collecting pins on Pinterest about a year in advance. I had all kinds of expectations and plans to make some really cool stuff. HELLO, I’m not even crafty! So one by one, these ideas turned to stress and would have added a lot of cost that our budget just didn’t have room for. So after hearing my sister say that she had been to a dozen grad parties and not one looked like a Pinterest board, I was able to let that stress go. I still did a couple of simple, and fun things, like these easy to hang photo clips, and you know what – it was all good. In-fact, it was pretty darn great.
No matter what kind of party you are throwing, Oriental Trading will make it easy. Here are a few photos of the signs, cups, plates, table covers and balloons that I received for review. They were each the perfect color, held up nicely and were very well made. I have no complaints and will definitely be ordering from them again.
FTC Disclosure: Free products were received for the purpose of this blog post. All photos used, and opinions expressed are my own and honest. I was not asked or influenced to write a positive review. This blog post contains no affiliate links.