8 Clever Ways To Throw Your Own Party When Visually Impaired

Adults playiong with sparklers at party
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We all enjoy a good dinner party, whether we are fully sighted or have partial vision. For once, we are on an equal playing field here, where we can enjoy getting together with our friends and families, to mingle and catch up, while delighting our taste buds with scrumptious food.

However, would you like to know some techniques that, as a visually impaired person you can use to create a fabulous party for your sighted friends?

Here are 8 clever ways that will help, especially if you are new to vision loss and want to retain your love for entertaining. Let’s do it!

1: Pour Yourself a Drink

Before you even lift a finger to invite your friends, sit down with a hot coffee or glass of wine (or other preferred beverage) and really plan out this party. So many great ideas can come at this pre-party phase. Put your plans and ideas into a file on your computer or have a party planner you can begin to fill out as more ideas emerge.

The time taken now is time well spent: it allows you to prepare in such an organized way that the event is a pleasure for you to manage and doesn’t get too overwhelming.

Invite a comfortable amount of friends you can accommodate easily in your home. For example, too many guests can cause many obstacles for you as the host, so perhaps plan to have your friends at a table or provide enough chairs to keep them seated out of your way (as much as possible).

2: Plan a Clever Menu

Once you work out numbers, craft a clever menu by including dishes you can make ahead of the day and place in the refrigerator or freezer. Especially ones that taste delicious but are fairly easy to cook. Dishes like vegetable soup, hearty casseroles, spicy curry or pasta sauces, savory quiches and baked desserts.

The other option is to plan out a menu where your friends all bring a dish. However, a word of advice here: ask for specific dishes so you get a good balance of savory and sweet. At one of my parties where I left it open to my friends to contribute, we ended up with corn chips, dips and fruit muffins!

3: Space it Out

Being visually impaired, it is important not to clutter your home and provide specific places for your guests to put down their bags, for example. In the excitement of a party, sighted friends can get distracted and may create more obstacles than is necessary. Just point them in the direction of the bag corner or better still, designate a room for their personal things.

4: Be Smart & Delegate

OK, so you are just about to set the table or are still madly getting food ready in the kitchen when the door bell rings – someone has arrived early? Don’t panic, put them to good use: appoint them as your party assistant and delegate!

Fill  them in on where things go so as people arrive, they are able to free you up for finishing off the meal preparations.

The extra bonus is having someone else pour drinks, change the CDs on the player or even to herd people into the party area so you are not tripping over them.

5: Chef’s Sneaky Tactics 

As you know, most people will gather in the heart of a kitchen where the food and good conversation is bubbling away. But, as I have noticed, sighted friends are also curious to watch their visually impaired host chop with sharp knives and dive into a hot oven and are eager to offer their sighted assistance.

If you would prefer they left you to your own culinary devices, send them out with bowls of nibbles or garlic bread and ask them to serve the other guests to allow you time to dish up in private.

6: Too Many Cooks Spoil the Broth

With a house full of guests and being ready to dish up, ask them to take their seats or give a couple of your friends the task of getting everyone settled. The main thing is you want to dish up in your own space.

Keeping your kitchen absolutely clear of  guests will allow you to move freely without causing an accident. At this moment, an unexpected gesture of help if you don’t see your friend moving plates around just as you are dishing up…well, you can imagine the outcome.

But, you can give them a little call to carry out the plates when you are satisfied everything is ready to go. And no one need see your clean hands moving swiftly over the food to arrange it neatly for their visual enjoyment!

7: After the Party

Admittedly, the chaos after a party can be exhausting to deal with. Some guests like to show their host their appreciation of having enjoyed the party by offering to wash up or tidy up plates, etc.

This is fine as long as you explain that they can leave kitchen items out on the bench if they are not sure where things go. There is nothing more frustrating for the chef with low vision to have to go hunting down the vegetable peeler, potato masher, etc. The most helpful task they can do is to round up all the stray drinking glasses your guests may have left perched in dangerous places.

8: Drum Roll: Leaving the Best Idea to Last

Plan a buffet dinner party!

Everyone brings a plate you have requested, they arrive and place it on the prepared table, where plates are accessible and cutlery await in a container. Dishing up is left to each guest – Voila! Who would have thought throwing a party was so easy for the visually impaired host!

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