You're having a party . . .

  Here's how to prepare

  1. Use an aromatic cleaner (pledge, windex, method . . . ) to clean the area around your front door before your guests arrive.  They will think they are entering a very clean house, even if they aren't.
  2. Light a candle in the bathroom.
  3. Simmer some apple juice with cinnamon sticks on the stove.  Toss some oranges and lemons in there too if you have them.
  4. Double or triple line your garbage and recycling cans with trash bags.
  5. Pour everyone a cocktail.
  6. Enjoy.

But, before I go I'd like to hop up on my soapbox and spout off a few things.  We have people over here and parties all the time.  One of my rules is to never, ever worry about the decorations and rarely about the food or drink.  I focus on the people.  Yes, I always have food and drinks, but I don't worry about it.  I put out food, or plan something easy to make.  When you entertain, it's about the people.  Yes, great food and a fabulous location help, but remember it's about being with friends and family.  So make sure your food is good, don't try some new ridiculous recipe the night of a big event . . . you might end up frazzled or exhausted.  Everyone loves cheese and crackers and chips and dip.  If you are a seasoned party thrower or a chef this P.S.A. does not apply to you.