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Are you planning a Christmas party this year?
Many of us do. Around our place, it's almost like a season of parties, and while I know we can't make them all, it IS fun to attend whatever ones we're able. After all, we're not big into throwing a party "just because", so we're totally into having a "reason" to get together with friends.
But I have to be honest here and tell you that when I usually think of Christmas parties, I'm thinking of the adults, or (secondarily) a family thing. Which is all well and good, but honestly, I seldom have asked my teens to do more than help me, once again, get through my "to do" list in preparation for said party.
But while preparing to write this series, I started considering how I'd feel if someone just kept asking me to do the grunt work. (OK, maybe it's more like how I DO feel when someone just asks me to do the grunt work...). And it wasn't pretty.
So in the spirit of parenting teens, and wanting to make and/or strengthen those bonds before they're headed out the door after graduation (sniff-sniff), I thought "How cool would it be to just do a "teen Christmas party" this year?"
Yup, they were all into that one!
Day 4 - Host a Teen Christmas party
The thing about teens is...ya' gotta be subtle. When they were little, it was fun to let them see your excitement and get caught up in the fun of getting prepared. Actually, my memories are that our delight kind of fed off each other: they were excited to have a party (usually a birthday party), which encouraged me to have fun planning it, which got them even more eager as we talked about ideas, etc.
But with teens, mom is gonna have to tone it down a bit. Which is fine, actually, because most of us at this age and stage of the game are exhausted most of the time anyway. But I digress.
So, on the subtle scale, keeping it simple is essential. Because while your teen will be touched and happy at having a party centered around his own friends, he still doesn't (necessarily) want a cheesy theme. And he certainly doesn't want anything cutesy.
But another essential is food. Lots of food (we are talking teens, you know!) The good news is that it doesn't have to be elaborate. (smile)
Teen Christmas party ideas
Pour yourself a cuppa and think back to what you liked to do as a teen, or better yet, recall some parties over the year that your own teen enjoyed attending or hosting. Consider:
Hosting a movie night
Pick out a Christmas-themed movie together with your teen and ask them if they'd want to encourage their friends to come in costume (seriously, ask them: their response may surprise you!). Serve some of the treats you made together the other day, or just make it an old-fashioned movie night and serve up some popcorn!
Hosting a game night
We're a game-lovin' family, and if your teen is, too, try picking up a new game or two. Make sure they're good for a larger group, or if not, have a few options on hand to allow smaller groups to form and play simultaneously. Then...switch it up after the first round!
Hosting a pizza party
They only keep in the fridge for a week, tho, so get out your food processor, whip up a bunch, and be generous with guests at home. Or you could wrap up a bunch to bring to the next Christmas party you attend.
Hosting a costume party
I'm the fun-loving parent of a few thespians, so this one is right up their alley. This is the one exception to my theme comment above. A themed costume party is just the ticket for teens who are so inclined... You'll know whether or not this one will appeal in your situation.
Trying an outside venue
Even in our rural town, we have a fun-park that has a number of options that our teens enjoy. Most of the time you can work out a package to suit your budget, so check with them. Our teens have enjoyed:
- laser tag
- miniature golf
- arcade games
- bumper boats
Hosting a bowling party
I know this one may sound corny, and of course, don't push your teen if they're not into this (or any other) idea. But our teens have had a blast with this "old school" activity when we'd get a group together at our local bowling alley.
So...think you'll be trying any of these out? I'd love to hear your party plans or find out how your own teen Christmas party went...so feel free to update us in the comments!
Tune in tomorrow as I present one last way to prepare for Christmas...together with your teen <3!
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This post is part one of a 5-part series. Read the other parts here:
5 Days of Preparing for Christmas with Your Teen