“Simple” Solutions for your New Years Soiree

Well, Christmas is over. I usually feel a bit of a sadness when it’s all over, but for some reason, I don’t this year. My Christmas was great. I was able to see all of my immediate family members, which doesn’t always happen. Tom and I both experienced our first White Christmas that either of us could remember. (It doesn’t snow much in Georgia and almost NEVER on Christmas day.) We had fun seeing the gifts everyone got and received some pretty awesome things ourselves (I got that mixer I’ve wanted for years, have lots of new things to try out with my camera, have new music and books, and reached something along the lines of shoe nirvana. I’m a grateful and very happy girl…).

It’s just that I’m really looking forward to 2011. I guess I’m just thinking of how great 2010 was and thinking about what’s to come is exciting.

But before we can experience the new year, we have to kick it off with a party, no?

And that is where this post finds its relevance. You see, early in December, 8BIT had a Christmas party. It was so fun. And at this party, Sue (wife of John) had some really cutely packaged presents for us to use in a white elephant gift exchange. I just have to show you how cute they were.

I already love using brown paper to wrap gifts, but what really nailed it for me are the paint samples spelling out “Christmas.” She cut them to look like batteries, and with the way the colors fade up, they look just like the icon for 8BIT. So creative!

Anyway, what I received was the Real Simple book that tells you “799 new uses for old things” AND a year’s subscription to Real Simple Magazine. Score! =)

I’ve decided to share uses found in the book with y’all as they apply. And with New Years Eve parties coming up, I’ve found some great ones to share. Without further ado, here are five (more like seven) tips to having a stylish but simplified New Years Eve bash:

1. Make transporting goodies less stressful. If you’re bringing something like cupcakes to someone else’s party, thinking about reusing those gift boxes from Christmas. If you cut X’s into a shirt box, you can carry about 8 cupcakes without having them fall over while you transport them.

(Source: Real Simple)

2. Lift Red Wine Stains 2 ways:

A. From your lips. Apparently if you rub on lemon, rinse your lips, dry them, and apply lip balm, you will get wine stains off your lips. Good to know.

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B. From your clothes. Stretch the stained fabric over a bowl, cover the stain with salt, and pour boiling water over the stain. It should remove it.

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3. Put the bubbles back in your bubbly. When it gets close to midnight, you will probably start pouring the bubbly. If you find it a bit flat, toss a raisin or two into the bottom of each glass of champagne. It will make any last few bubbles of carbon dioxide stick to the raisin then be released into the drink.

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4. Keep candles from becoming a headache:

A. When you light them. Keep your fingers from getting burned by lighting the end of a spaghetti noodle. It lasts much longer than a match, so you can light lots of candles without needing to use up many matches. It is also longer, which means you can reach wicks that are in votives without getting burned.

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B. When you clean up. Lots of us use candles as an easy way to decorate or for softer lighting. But the clean up can be a pain. If you are using candles that can stand on their own, place them in some sand. Put the sand on top of a decorative plate or in some kind of glass. Place the candle on top of the sand. When it’s time to clean up, just dump out the sand. It will take all the wax drippings with it instead of having them stuck to the plate/votive/glass you are using to hold the candle. Easy!

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5. Sparkle without getting burned. If you have kids at your New Years party, you might want to protect their little fingers if/when you light sparklers at the end of the night. Put the sparkler in a little tub of play-doh, and let them hold the tub. No burns!

(Source: Real Simple)

So there you are! A “real simple” New Years party! I hope that these tips help you as you make your party plans.

~Meghan

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