The promise of holiday parties comes along with the holiday season that is upon us. The always entertaining office parties, trips to your in-laws for dinner or getting together with a group of friends. This year while you’re out buying presents for friends, family, and coworkers don’t forget to pick up a hostess gift. (Even if it’s your mom.) 
Christmas is a huge production and anyone who agrees to host it also agrees to take on a huge time commitment, added holiday season stress and a lot of extra work. Between composing a guest list, invites, RSVPs, food, setting up and decorating for the party itself; then the opening of gifts, possibly judgmental or gossipy relatives, screaming children (Whew! Anyone need a drink yet?)... and we haven’t touched on the subject of house guests…
This year show your appreciation. It doesn’t have to be something extravagant, and if you’re tight on cash (courtesy of Black Friday and Cyber Monday), it can even be free. Show your hostess how much you care, and appreciate their time and invitation to join them in their celebrations.
Volunteer to wash the mountain of dishes that accumulate after dinner, cook some of the side dishes, or entertain the kids before dinner is served. (The last thing your hostess needs is little Timmy digging through cabinets and accidentally breaking the irreplaceable antique vase passed down by her great, great grandmother.)
Give the gift of energy. Buy a cute coffee cup and fill it with coffee, tea, or even hot chocolate packets.
Go old school and create a mix CD of Christmas songs to get everyone in the holiday spirit. (Not that the eggnog hasn’t done that already.)
Bring something your hostess can enjoy after the festivities wind down and everyone has gone home. 
If you have food allergies or don’t eat certain foods  .I.e.: Meat or grains, offer to bring something you can eat. This will relieve the stress of worrying what to feed you and prevent you from getting stuck with a veggie tray…again. You can also offer to bring appetizers to help curb everyone’s appetite until the main meal.
The holidays are a joyous time meant to be spent with loved ones, singing Christmas carols, laughing together, enjoying tasty food and drinks, and arguing over who makes a better pecan pie. Sometimes it’s the only chance we get to see relatives and catch up on family gossip. 
 Give a gift that allows your hostess to enjoy that time too.

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