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Trying to celebrate the holidays on a tight budget makes many of us say, bah humbug! But it is possible to plan a festive bash for around $50 (and still look like you’ve Kardashian bucks) with these easy, inexpensive ideas:
Wine and Cheese Potluck
Invite friends for a BYOB wine and cheese potluck. Ask guests to bring a bottle of their favorite vino or bubbly and a cheese choice. You supply the crackers and a dessert spread, along with your favorite wine and cheese as well. It’s such an easy party idea, but totally unforgettable.
Cocktail Party for Your Besties
Luxe can be totally affordable -- when you do it on a smaller scale. Instead of a crazy, over-the-top holiday party, plan an elegant, intimate cocktail party with your nearest and dearest. Mix one or two fancy appetizers (tip: make them yourself to save big bucks) with some classic favorites, like crudites and dip. And serve it all with your favorite affordable wine, like Black Box’s Cabernet Sauvignon, which comes in a 3-liter box (that’s the equivalent of four bottles!) for about $25.
Holiday Comfort Party
Ready to deck the halls? Light a fire and invite family and friends over for a cozy holiday party where you serve inexpensive comfort foods, like lasagna and garlic bread, along with a festive sangria punch. Two homemade lasagnas can be made for $10-15 and will serve a big crowd. Everyone can join in trimming the tree and decorating the house. Then, toast the night with a little eggnog.
Just Desserts Party
Plan the sweetest of holiday soirees by dishing up a selection of your favorite desserts -- and that’s it. Or ask your friends to bring their must-have holiday treat for a Santa-size sugar rush. A hot cocoa bar with an assortment of toppings and mix-ins (alcohol optional) makes the perfect accompaniment.
Festive Open House
Take the stress out of party planning (and keep the money in your wallet) with a low-key open house during the day. Instead of having a set start time, let folks drop by at their leisure, creating a fun flow of people coming and going. Serve up a spread of light appetizers and drinks, then sit back and enjoy.