{Cinco de Mayo} Host Your Own Shindig on a Budget

As a brand, She Makes Cents is all about inspiring and informing you of ways to use your “cents” to live a fabulous life. So it’s time to start thinking about…well, some fabulosity. Now that the weather is warm and I have officially come out of hibernation, I keep thinking of ways I can get my entertaining groove back. Luckily the calendar is on my side as next week presents a few options for themed entertainment with the Kentucky Derby & Cinco de Mayo. While I LOVE the idea of playing dress up for a Kentucky Derby party, I am leaning toward a chic yet laid back Cinco de Mayo celebration. I plan on keeping the guest list intimate and executing a food and beverage plan that will keep costs down.  Working in the special events industry certainly comes in handy with my planning.  A fun taco bar, vibrant colored fruit, and of course, a signature drink will create a fun atmosphere for my guests! This is where presentation makes the difference between being the host of a cheesy get-together or hosting an event with effortless style!

Check Out My Inspirations Below!


 Host Your Own Shindig on a Budget

1. Keep your guest list small & intimate.  I often find that I am able to be more apart of an event when there are fewer people.  The conversation is more engaging and it lessens the chance of people cliqued up and not mingling with new people.

2. Go Green. Don’t waste your money on paper invitations or Evites.  Instead, try calling people.  It’s more personal, your guests will appreciate the effort, and you are more likely to get an immediate rsvp. 

3.  Be Like Santa!  Make a list and check it twice.  Save yourself money and stress by making sure you get everything you need ahead of time.  Having to rush to the store to grab an extra bag of ice is never cool.

4. Select a Flexible Menu.  My taco bar allow guests to essentially make their own meal.  It’s cost-effective and this removes the chance of me forgetting that Lauren is allergic to cheese and Victoria hates onions just as much as I do.  An added bonus for this particular meal is that all the colorful ingredients can be stylized to create an awesome visual display on the table.  A signature drink or two (one with plenty of spirits and one without) helps keep your beverage budget down…especially compared to an open bar.

5. Added Touches.  I never host an event without background music, fresh floral, and a co-host.  Keeping your guests comfortable will keep your party going.  Don’t forget the little things such as stocking up on extra TP and paper towels, strategically placing trash cans throughout the house, citronella candles for outside, and thoughtfully positioned seating areas for guests.

What Is Your Favorite Entertaining Tip?


Email SMC: shemakescents@gmail.com

{Every Woman Should Know…} How to Be a Good Host

You’ve decided to host an event, be it for your girlfriend who is getting married or an impromptu gathering of friends for an intimate dinner.  Now what?  It’s time to put your womanly skills to work.  I remember seeing the 2009 movie “The Joneses” and thought that Demi Moore’s character was an excellent host.  In preparing for tomorrow’s Cinco de Derby events (yes, I did combine Kentucky Derby with Cinco de Mayo), it got me thinking about my own skills.  I mean really, I am in the events industry so I know a thing or two about planning events, but I wanted to cross check my hosting etiquette with Emily Post.  No matter the kind of party you’re throwing, there are some things a host should remember, even before the party starts.

Six Ways to Be a Good Host:

1) Invite clearly. Label the invite specific to who you want to attend. Include necessary information for your guests in the invitation.  Is the party a casual get-together or more formal? What about the attire?  Maybe a guest would benefit by knowing ahead of time who else will be there, which you might mention when they RSVP.

2) Plan well.  Preparing your guest list carefully is key to a successful party.  Then do as much as you can ahead of time.  (Lower the stress level by serving food and refreshments you know will work.)  Get everything ready well before your guests arrive, so you’ll feel relaxed from the very beginning.

3) Remain calm.  Giving a party can be enjoyable, especially if you approach it with simplicity.  Get help if necessary, and don’t let your guests think you’re huffing and puffing.  They’ll feel far more comfortable if they don’t have to wonder whether they’re causing you any trouble.

4) Keep your guests feeling welcome.  Make sure guests are warmly greeted, then made to feel welcome throughout the party.  Look after each guest as much as you can.  If you notice that a guest has an empty glass or if there’s one person standing alone, remedy the situation as quickly and cheerfully as possible.

5) Be flexible and gracious.  Your soufflé falls.  Or one friend arrives with an unexpected guest.  The ruined dessert?  Have a fallback. The uninvited guest?  As discourteous as it is for someone to spring a surprise on you, be gracious.  No polite host would ever send an uninvited guest packing.

6) Be appreciative.  Thank people for coming as you bid them good-bye.  And don’t forget to thank anyone who brought you a gift.

Info: Emily Post

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Email SMC: shemakescents@gmail.com

Cinco de Mayo!!!

May 5


It’s Cinco de Mayo; my third favorite holiday behind 4th of July and my birthday! When I think of Cinco de Mayo I think of great food, great drinks, great people, and a sense of community….oh yeah, and the Mexican’s army victory of the French. So how do you have a great Cinco de Mayo experience without killing your cash? Well it depends on where in the world you live. I live in the south of the US, so every Mexican restaurant will be offering food and drink specials. I’m too excited for words because I eat Mexican food (authentic and Americanized) at least once a week. Just remember, if you are restaurant bound, to get there early because this celebration starts early and lasts ALL night. If you live in a city where Mexican restaurants are hard to come by, NYC for example, I would suggest hosting a Tacos and Tequila Party with you and a couple of friends. It’s fun, it’s cheap, and it helps answer the daily question of “what’s for dinner (cena)?”