Some of my very most favorite things:
- Parties with friends and/or family
- Serving delicious food (and eating it)
- saving money
- Eating yummy party food
- Free Stuff!
- Did I mention eating? — lol — It always seems to be an integral part of gatherings in our home.
Being the hostess of a house party, sponsored by houseparty.com indulges me in all of those. I am a lucky woman! I have had three House Parties in the past: a Grey Poupon Mustard Party, a Velveeta Super Bowl Party and a Clairol Hair Color Party. This Sunday at 3 pm, people will be coming from far and wide to my Hunt’s Garden Fresh Tomatoes Party. Isn’t this a wonderful premise?
There is nothing for your guests to buy — ever. They don’t have to listen to a demonstration and then be hounded by a representative to purchase something so you can receive a free gift. With House Party, EVERYBODY gets free gifts! House party works with major corporations that produce name-brand products. These corporations have recognized that word-of-mouth advertising is not only more cost-effective, but it is one of their most valuable marketing tools. So, they pick a date with houseparty and start accepting applications from around the country, from people who are willing to host a party for them on that date. They select their hosts/hostesses and then provide free gifts for all your guests and free things for you. Everything they can do to help make your party a success from coupons to full-size food products, aprons to recipe cards, cheese keepers to spatulas, party games, music cd’s and more is included in your party pack that arrives via UPS a week or so before your party. The party pack varies from party to party, based on the company providing it. You develop a theme, invite your guests and then sit back and enjoy tasty refreshments, thought provoking conversation and the bounty of free items provided.
This afternoon, I will be attending a Windows 7 Debut houseparty at my sister’s. I happen to know as a hostess, she received Windows 7 absolutely free and there will be gifts for all who attend. Isn’t this amazing!!??!! Plus, like me, when Debi has a party there is likely to be something delicious cooking, even if her party pack only included CD’s! (No pressure, Debi!)
My party pack from Hunts included an apron, spatulas, recipes, (4) coupons for free tomatoes, (15) packets of basil seeds and (15) coupons for $1.00 off diced tomatoes. I used these items and a little frugal ingenuity to make the lovely party favors you see above for my guests.
As you and I become more and more acquainted, I will be sharing about all the ways I save money for my family by completing surveys and testing new products, but for today, I just want to share that I also had (10) coupons for $1.10 off Progresso’s new High Fiber Soups and (10) coupons for $1.10 off Progresso’s Panko Italian Bread crumbs. Our local grocery store had Hunt’s Diced Tomatoes on sale for $1.24 each, so with my coupons, they only cost me 24¢ per can. The cans I had free coupons for are going into the wonderful menu I have planned. The Progresso Soup was on sale for $1.50 each and with my coupons, I got them for only 40¢! Panko bread crumbs are still a fairly new concept in my area, so there was only one store I found that carried them and they weren’t on sale. That was my splurge for the party. They sold for $2.25 each and with my $1.10 coupon only cost $1.15. Add in some clearance planter baskets from Wal-Mart for $1 and a $3 pack of 6 dishcloths, my total cost for each party favor is only $3.29. Without all the coupons, the same items would have cost $6.49. I saved nearly 50% and now, my guests get to go home with these fun baskets which double as “decorations” during the party.
There is no need to add anything to what the companies involved with houseparty.com send you; and other times I have made great party favor bags with only what I received from them, but I was inspired by the basil seeds and the Italian menu theme of my party. A little raffia ribbon from the craft basket to finish things off and I think these baskets turned out pretty well.
- Pasta E Fagioli (a copy cat from the Olive Garden)
- Tomato Cheese Bruschetta
- a lovely salad
- Fudge Brownies
- Ice Cream Punch made with our own Homemade Soda (that’s a blog for another day – lol )
I wish you could be here tomorrow and share in all the fun and food, but I want to encourage you to check out the House Party website. Sign up and get selected for your own houseparty and the great free gifts that includes! You’ll be saving and enjoying festive gatherings in no time!