It’s a month to Christmas! The excitement is high, malls across Singapore are already playing those classic Christmas music, shops decked out with decorations of greens and reds and everyone have started buying presents and planning their party!
Hosting a Christmas party can be a challenge to your budget and often we’d find ourselves rather being the party guest than the party host, but it doesn’t always have to be that way! You don’t have to overspend to entertain! Here are some budget-friendly ways to host a Christmas party.
It’s important to get this sorted early! Send your invites now before your intended guests have other plans. If it’s an invitation through facebook, whatsapp or email, make sure you get them to RSVP their attendance and don’t accept a ‘maybe’ or ‘see how it goes’. You don’t want to waste hours cooking and preparing but having nobody show up.
We find that the ideal day for a Christmas party among friends is the weekend before Christmas, and a Christmas party for family and relatives is better suited for the eve and Christmas day itself.
You can get your children involve with the invitation cards (if you have any kids) by printing out this Christmas tree template on a standard paper, cut it out and allow your kids to colour and decorate it. Remember to write down the name of the invitee, date and location of event at the back of the cutout to give out to your intended guests.
You only need to decorate the accent key areas with high human traffic such as by the front door, the dining table, the tv or coffee table or just add some green tassels around the living room mirror. Keep things within the theme colours of red and green for the classic look but you can also opt for white and blue if you want the wintery snowfy feel. Remember to display your candles too!
Christmas decorations are cheap from your nearest Daiso where everything is $2 and their range and selection are endless! You can find everything from Christmas themed plates and cups to a decently sized miniature Christmas tree.
Another good place for cheap Christmas finds is SKP. SKP sells mostly party essentials and with a quick google search you can find a store near you.
Some may think that a Christmas tree may take up too much storage after using or its over the budget to actually buy one, but it doesn’t feel like Christmas without a Christmas tree, so here are some alternatives!
A tiny miniature Christmas tree works too! Only $2 from Daiso and its so cute! Drape a red satin cloth over a small table (if your table is ugly), place your miniature tree in the middle and some candles, candy canes or knick knacks to decorate around it, then place all your presents on the floor around the table!
You can fix up some fairy lights into the shape of a Christmas tree on the wall with some clear tape and watch how beautifully it illuminates the entire room!
Another quirky and extremely budget alternative is to just stick some leaves on the wall lol.
This is all entirely your choice! Every family have their own classic dishes and frankly I’ve never attended a Christmas dinner by other families other than my own so I wouldn’t know, but my Eurasian family and relatives always cook the same 5 dishes for Christmas every single year that consists of curry devil, shepherd’s pie, turkey roast, chicken roast with gravy and something random I don’t remember that changes year to year.
This is the recipe for curry devil if you’d like to give it a try. Pork is optional and you don’t necessarily need to include it incase you might have Muslim guests attending your party.
800g chicken, cut into bite-size
300g roasted pork, cut into bite-size
6 shallots, sliced 3 cloves garlic, sliced
3 red chillies, slit lengthwise
500g potatoes, quartered
1 packet of sweet peas
½ a small cabbage
3 tomatoes, quartered
2 large onions, quartered
1 litre of chicken stock / 2 cubes of Knorr Chicken Stock
cubes mixed with water
1 tbs sugar
1 tbs vinegar
20g mustard seedsSalt, to taste
20 dried chillies, soaked in water and deseeded
4 cloves garlic
2cm turmeric root
8 pcs candlenuts
15g coriander seeds
Season chicken with salt and set aside.
Blend all spice ingredients until fine.
Heat a little oil in pot and lightly brown the sliced shallots and garlic.
Add the blended spice and fry until fragrant. Crush the mustard seeds lightly and add to the pot, mix the ingredients well and fry for another 3 minutes.
Put in the chicken pieces and mix well.
Add water and cook over medium heat until the chicken is tender.
Add quartered potatoes, onions, tomatoes, vinegar, fresh chillies and season with salt.
Cook until the potatoes, sweet peas, cabbage, roasted pork and chicken are cooked thoroughly. Serve.
Another super cheap and easy dish is Shepherd’s pie. All you need are potatoes, minced meat, cinnamon powder, egg whites, evaporated milk, butter, onions, garlic, salt and msg!
First peel and boil your potatoes until its soft to mash and then drain the liquid. Add some pepper, salt, butter and evaporated milk to the potatoes while you mash it til its smooth.
Fry your onions and garlic in any kind of cooking oil til its fragrant then add in your minced meat. Once browned, add in about a teaspoon or less of cinnamon powder and then some salt and msg.
Add your minced meat at the bottom of a baking dish or casserole and then layer your mashed potatoes on top. Then use a fork or brush to spread the egg whites on top of the mashed potatoes to give it a nice glaze after baking for 20 minutes.
FYI if you don’t have an oven you can skip the egg white process and just serve it as it is.
You can look up online for the measurement of ingredients or time and temperature to bake but we usually gauge by taste and consistency.
It’s not hard to keep it cheap within budget. You can easily buy your ingredients from Giant where they have things on promo or you local wet market, and avoid the atas supermarkets like Cold Storage!
And don’t forget a Christmas log cake! You can find these at most bakeries during the Christmas season.
For some cooking inspiration, do check out the BBC Good Food website in the Christmas party category.
People from all ages enjoy Christmas activities over some wine or eggnog to calm down from their food coma after dinner! Here are some fun activities for bonding time with friends and family!
1. Write the names of everyone participating on a piece of paper. If the group is larger and people don’t know each other that well, it is a good idea to get people to write their names and some distinguishing features/interests. In more intimate group environments, only the name of the person is necessary.
2. Cut out and toss the names into a hat. The next step is to prepare the names for a drawing. Cut each name out, and then fold it in half once or twice to prevent people from reading it without unfolding it. Then, place all the folded names into a bowl or hat and mix them around a bit so that the names are shuffled.
3. Set a price limit. This can be done in discussion with the whole group or just by those who are organizing the event. The price limit is set so that some people don’t try to be cheap and get away with purchasing a gift for only a few dollars, while others try to overachieve and purchase very expensive gifts. Select a price limit in the ‘happy medium’ range that you know everyone in the group can afford. It’s better to be safe than sorry and choose a lower price range than to choose something too high that some people don’t have enough money for.
4. Draw names. Work around the group, giving everyone the opportunity to draw a single name randomly out of the hat. Keep the names folded and hidden until everyone has drawn. At this point each person can look at their name, as long as they are careful not to say who they have or to show anyone else their slip of paper. If someone draws their own name, have them redraw.
5. With your person in mind, go out and choose the perfect gift for them. Try to make it personal, and avoid choosing a generic gift like a coffee mug or a bag of candy. Be intentional about matching the price limit though, otherwise you may make your gift recipient or others uncomfortable with how cheap or how expensive you were.
6. When everyone in the group has purchased their gifts and met up together at your party, you can begin the gift exchange. Wait until everyone is present, and continue keeping your gift recipient a secret until everyone is given a ‘go’ to start exchanging gifts. At that point, find the person to match the name you drew, and reveal your gift! Don’t forget you’ll be receiving a gift as well, so remain gracious and polite as you accept your present (even if you really don’t like what you got)
To make things funny (evil) at the same time, instead of drawing out names and buying gifts for someone in particular, you can choose to let everyone buy random gifts within the budget of $5 to $10. During the party, have everyone place their gifts on the table. Then write down numbers on a piece of paper and draw them out to each person participating.
The person with the first number gets to go first at picking a gift on the table (usually the best looking and biggest one) and the last number will be forced to take what no one else want.
But there’s a twist! Everyone will get 1 chance to steal! This means they will get to force exchange their gift with someone else only when it is their turn. This usually means the last person drawn will get the chance to steal the best looking gift and the first person will get no one to steal from at all but only hope that nobody steals his gift!
These are mostly games for adults but don’t worry, we can help to keep the younger guests entertained with our Mr Egg’s 2-in-1 party package!
Pick any business class bouncy castle and any 1 activity out of 10 for only $299NETT.
*Christmas special only: You can choose any 2 activities and don’t necessarily need to book our bouncy castle in case of space constraint.
business class bouncy castle of your choice (4 hours)
Face painting (1 hour) Balloon twisting (1 hour) Popcorn Machine (2 hours)
Caramel Flavor imported from US. ( Halal certified ) Cotton candy machine (2 hours)
Imported from US. ( Halal certified )
Glitter art tattoo (1 hour)
Sweet corn machine (1 hours) Fun & Games with prizes (20 minutes) + cake cutting ceremony (10 Minutes)
2 round table 10 kiddie stools
Speaker with microphone
For bookings or more info call +65 97955766 or visit www.mreggmagic.com