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Enjoying a meal with friends is a lovely way to spend any evening of the week. However, many people cannot afford to go out for a fancy meal all the time or worry about hosting a party in a small apartment. Save money and consider hosting a dinner party instead. You can expect more preparation and more work but in the end a quiet dinner party in your rental home can provide a comfortable and friendly atmosphere to socialize and serve up some tasty treats.

Hosting even a small dinner party can be quite intense if you are not adequately equipped. You will need to ensure that you have seats, a big enough table and cutlery and plates for all of your guests. Even if you are having four couples over, this equates to ten guests including you and your partner. Do you have the necessities to seat, serve and satisfy the hunger of this many people? If not, there are a couple of things that you can do to ensure that everyone enjoys themselves and to bring your stress levels down.

Dinner Party Preparation

If you do not have a big enough table to serve all of your guests then you will need to improvise. You may wish to take your dining room table and your outdoor table and connect them together on your patio (if the weather permits). Or, you may need to use a fold up camping table. Stick some nice tablecloths on top and no one will notice.

If you enjoy cooking and can afford the ingredients, then you may wish to cook all the dishes yourself. Give yourself plenty of time to buy the food, choose the meals and prepare them. You may find that you are cooking all day if you do decide to go this route.

Another option, however, is to host a pot luck dinner where all of your guests bring one or two dishes. If, for example, you have four guests coming, you could get one couple to bring an appetizer, one couple bring a salad, one couple bring dessert and one couple bring a side dish. Then you simply cook the main meal and you have a five course meal without the five course effort.

Planning ahead and having the house clean, the plates out, the tables cleared and the food prepared will ensure that you can actually enjoy yourself at your party instead of spending all your time in the kitchen. Make sure you have enough glasses out for all of your guests and have a table set up for appetizers, beverages and other nibbles.

This will ensure your guests are happy and satisfied before dinner.

When your guests offer to help - let them. Have all the dishes and cutlery ready to go on the table so one of your guests can easily set the table. One of your guests can bring the dirty dishes into the kitchen so you can wash. Be ready by having an empty garbage bin ready for scraps as well as an empty dishwasher ready for the dirty dishes. You can expect to have more than one load but as soon as the dishwasher is filled up, turn it on. Stick the rest of the dishes in a neat pile, rinsed and ready to go.

When hosting a dinner party you can expect to have some mess to clean up. Try to clear enough plates and dishes so that your guests can still sit down after dinner and enjoy a dessert and a coffee but still find the time to socialize. You can properly clear and clean up after they go; for now, sit down, relax and have some fun.

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