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Monday, October 10, 2011

31 Days: Day 10 - Party Planning

I know I've been jumping around a lot with the topics in this series about celebrations. (In case you are just tuning in - I am participating in the Nester's 31 Day Challenge, to choose a topic and write a blog post about it every single day during the month of October) The perfectionist part of me wants to start over, make a list of topics needed and take you through the party planning process from beginning to end. But here's the thing - jumping from thing to thing IS how party planning goes. Sure I could sit down for 10 minutes and go through the list "Ok I'm inviting ___, _____, and _____. The party theme is ____ with _____ for decorations. We are eating _____." and call it good. However, you know that's not how you get the most creative, fun parties, crafts, or ideas in general. Some things are collected. Some things just jump right off the computer or the shelf at the store screaming "use me for the Fish Parteeeee!" And the rest of it just kind of falls into place. And, of course, some things can be worked on ahead of time and others have to wait until right before the party. My husband would put me in the nut house, for sure, if I started constructing the princess castle (Kaitlyn's 5th Birthday party) when I had actually started planning the party - in June! :)

So I've been posting things as they pop into my head, or whatever I have been working on that day, or just because I felt like it. Well, today let's pull it all together a bit by talking about organization, and more specifically, lists! (my favorite thing! ha)

It's one thing to collect fantastic and creative ideas, it's a whole other thing to remember them and be able to access details on demand. I can depend on my brain to remember maybe 75% of the things I put in it, most of the time. But worrying that I'm forgetting something, or not realizing I've forgotten something until it's too late really isn't worth the stress. I have learned not only to write things down, but to put those lists where I can find them easily, and most importantly, in the same place every time so that I'm not losing the list itself.

I have developed my own little system when it comes to planning parties or any other fun event, relying heavily on the computer to do so :) First is the idea phase, which means a lot of fun time spent blog hopping. I make sure to Pin ( - its an online tool for keeping track of websites and links) anything that even half-way sparks my interest so I can always go back and find it later. Before I discovered that handy tool I did the same thing on my own by creating a Word Doc where I copy/pasted website links, photos, etc and wrote down any ideas/thoughts I had. I also use Word to keep track of the party plans as they take shape, adding ideas for decorations, what I found for the party, who is being invited, etc as I go along. And today I turned that all into a printable Party Planning Worksheet to share with all of you! I included a section for each of the major things that go into planning a party: details like date and time, theme, decorations, food, activities, guest list, favors, and even a spot to keep a running list for supplies and shopping. And condensed it down to only 2 pages (1 pg if you print it front/back), for convenience.

(you can download the pdf file for the worksheet here)
(if you prefer the Word doc, feel free to email me with your request)

So please, print away and let's get started planning your next celebration!

Linking to:
Tip Junkie handmade projects

Today's Creative Blog

Sumo's Sweet Stuff

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