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My other ride is a Ninja
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So this year what did you learn or what do you plan to do different for next years party ?


For me I have decided to go smaller we had over 75 people this year it has grown over the last 11 years and I think it is time to trim it down. 2018 my plan is to only have around 20 its hard to visit with everyone when you are the host and there is 75 people there lol

I also do knot think I am going to decorate my whole property I will do the party area and if anything outside my covered porch
 

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Yep learned that lesson a long time ago...i used to b so consumed with numbers...the more the merrier right...WRONG!!! 20-25 is the perfect number, much more than that u work your tail off and have no time for guests...plus food and drinks r a little easier to both prepare and pay for with a smaller crowd

As for us we didn't have a 2017 party so I'll go with what I learned from 2016 ;) ONLY USE FLAMELESS CANDLES LOL ;)
 

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My other ride is a Ninja
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Discussion Starter #3
Yep learned that lesson a long time ago...i used to b so consumed with numbers...the more the merrier right...WRONG!!! 20-25 is the perfect number, much more than that u work your tail off and have no time for guests...plus food and drinks r a little easier to both prepare and pay for with a smaller crowd

As for us we didn't have a 2017 party so I'll go with what I learned from 2016 ;) ONLY USE FLAMELESS CANDLES LOL ;)
I so agree
I have also do not want to spend my summers decorating time to shrink what I decorate :)
 
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First I want to say we really appreciate being one of the many at your party Saki... I wish we had be able to stay longer.

I agree smaller can be better. We have no control over how may beyond the size of the venue we rent. We do a potluck party for our geocahcing group and this year we guesstimated there were around 120 attendees.... NO WAY as a host was I able to say more then a hi to most of them.

Delegate when and where you can. It can be hard to let others do things you really feel you should be doing but let it go and let others have the fun of doing it. We happen to have someone who loves being a social butterfly so she runs the welcome table and the costume contest for us freeing up lots of time. Others watch over the buffet table and the refill the punch bowls. Thank the gods for those who come to help set up and stay to clean up. OK I still have trouble letting others pack up our things. So many things don't get packed away right or I don't have an idea where something now is and in the end I have to go through everything and repack it but at least it's at my leisure and not racing to clear out of the rental.

Last don't sweat it... too much. Most people have no idea what's missing, not working right or at all. It's really hard to not get freaky when you realize the big foot prop isn't moving or the lights on the oversized candles have a blown socket, or we forgot the Mr Brain prop at home Yiks and people are arriving. Nobody was aware they weren't working or missing but me and Frog. There was plenty of eye candy for the them to see, lots of great food and 119 other people to distract them.
 

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The Ghost Host
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Well...our numbers were smaller than in previous years and we didn't have too many people in costume. Still a successful party, but not as big as what we've had in the past. And I don't know that I'm pleased with that...I kind of like having a larger party. I think we've decided to take a year off just to let people have a year to do something else, because I think that's what caused our smaller numbers. I think people have attended for a number of years so they went elsewhere. When we come back in 2019 I really want a strong theme, and I want a fresh element to the party.
 

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My other ride is a Ninja
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Discussion Starter #6
Well...our numbers were smaller than in previous years and we didn't have too many people in costume. Still a successful party, but not as big as what we've had in the past. And I don't know that I'm pleased with that...I kind of like having a larger party. I think we've decided to take a year off just to let people have a year to do something else, because I think that's what caused our smaller numbers. I think people have attended for a number of years so they went elsewhere. When we come back in 2019 I really want a strong theme, and I want a fresh element to the party.
you know I say I want to go smaller but honestly not sure I can lol I love to go big to I have a year to think on it . I am one of those people the saying fits go big or go home lol so it may still go big lol
and as I think about it people understand when your the host you are all over the place I might do my party earlier in oct this next year I do know I have started a saving account that each pay check a little goes into my Halloween fund so when time comes there money is there :)
 

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The Ghost Host
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I have started a saving account that each pay check a little goes into my Halloween fund so when time comes there money is there :)
That's actually a very smart idea. I have a line of credit from Halloweentown national bank(also known as Capital One:D) that I use for Halloween purchases only. And it has a decent limit so it keeps me from going overboard.
 

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I need to decorate the front room a bit better because everyone ended up in there after dinner because it has the most and the most comfortable seating.

I missed turning on a few candles right before everyone got there because I was also cooking. Didn't even notice till after people started leaving. I need to make a checklist of what to do in each room an hour before guests arrive.

Next year I am going to have music planned out rather than just telling my husband to put something on or whatever.

Other than that everything went really well!
 

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That happened to me too..... I had a couple of small alligators in my swamp whose eyes lit up red .....forgot to turn them on!!! actually quite a few things were forgotten and were not turned on. Next year I plan on turning stuff on the morning of the party. Most things like battery operated candles/ tombstones etc the battery will last at least all day if not longer
 

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The Ghost Host
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That happened to me too..... I had a couple of small alligators in my swamp whose eyes lit up red .....forgot to turn them on!!! actually quite a few things were forgotten and were not turned on. Next year I plan on turning stuff on the morning of the party. Most things like battery operated candles/ tombstones etc the battery will last at least all day if not longer
Yes, as a general rule of thumb I always go around 3 hours before the party and turn all of the little bits on. All of the outside lights are set on a timer so I don't have to worry about anything outside.
 

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Dawn of the Dead
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I learned something by not having a party this year. My Facebook feed showed quite a few neighbors and friends at other parties on the night I would have had a party. I'll do my party a week earlier. Then there will be no competition for the date and our guests get double wear out of their costume.
 

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This year I finally realized how much food to prepare for my party. I normally have 30-35 people attend and always have waaaay too much food left over afterwards. This year there were still leftovers, but not an unmanageable amount. I also learned that having my Mom come down and help me took a lot of stress off of me, this is the first time I have had any help with preparations. And finally, I ended up ordering all of my desserts and just made the main course foods - the amount of work and stress that it saved me was worth the price.
 

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crossfit zombie
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When I was married we did a huge party spent around 1500 for just food drink treats for the kids and just cool party décor like the margaritville cocktail maker.now that I am single I do things my way I have or join party forces for just a girl party which I love.Norm arount 25 girls. and its a blast..So I do agree smaller equals less stress.Just whatever you do enjoy yourself.
 

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This year I'm going to spend more time with my guests and less time fretting about things not working properly!
I've learned about preparation (more in advance, the better), the importance of music (it really helps with atmosphere) and just being part of the group enjoying the party rather than a prop trying to sell the theme. Oh, and not taking it personally when people can't make it or drop out last minute. That did stress me out last year!
 

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We learned that we should probably say no kids so that the adults can let loose and enjoy themselves! We had some guests arrive with no costumes and children which really killed the party vibe. There were no kids the year before and it was a ton of fun.
 

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Hi Silver Jinx, last year was the first year we specified no children. I had always discouraged people from bringing their kids, but there would always be one or two that would still bring them. Last year I was adamant about it and I think everyone felt more at ease without having kids there.
 

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With regards to kids, we had a few pre-teens show up and then have to leave as they and their parents had the assumption it was an all kids party and were a bit put off when they saw the adults and alcohol. This year, I'm creating an invite for the kids to take home explaining the party better. We're also going to start earlier so the kids have the run of the place for a few hours before the main horde of adults arrive. To go further, my theme this year includes insane children so I hope to have the pre-teens as actors for a bit as the adults arrive.
 

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In 2017 we learned that we need to decorate earlier, for a few reasons. The first is that we spend the entire month of October decorating, and we don't have time for anything else. It would be nice to actually enjoy October and do some fall/Halloween activities other than decorating the house. The second is just the sheer panic it creates. My friend's wedding was the night before our party, so all of the last minute things were crammed into the day of the party. Any time there's something that takes precedence over decorating, it causes stress. The third is the financial factor. I want to start making purchases now so the expense of decorating is spread out over a few months, instead of spending half of every October paycheck on Halloween stuff.

This year the goal is to have the house/yard completely decorated by October 1st. We're starting to plan and make purchases now. I'd like it so the week of the party, the only thing left to do is minor last minute things like changing out interior lightbulbs.

And an added bonus of all that is that it extends the time I get to focus on Halloween. :D
 

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I keep having to re-learn this every year, but build time into your pre-party schedule to take lots of photos of the completed set-up! You inevitably will run out of time and finish just before the guests arrive, but if you don't have time to take the photos yourself, ask someone who gets their first to take lots of photos of the completed set-up before people start chowing down, drinking, and the party gets in full swing.
 
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