Holiday Event Planning

At My Epilepsy Story,  we love to share with you what other Women With Epilepsy are doing in their lives while managing their epilepsy.  I want to introduce you to Ashley Gelfound and let you see what wonderful things she is doing with her life.  Thank you Ashley for sharing your talents with us!   So everyone meet Ashley!   ~Brandy

roast-turkey-1“At the beginning of the year I shared my story with the My Epilepsy Story community. I was compelled to do so to in order help shed light and awareness as to what having this condition really means. All of our epilepsy stories here are unique and it is important that our voices be heard.

Epilepsy is just one aspect of my life though. I am also a full time mom to a rambunctious 2 year old boy and run an Event Planning business on the side. It is a constant juggle managing a business while raising a toddler but I love what I do so I don’t mind. The trick is staying organized. I have all kinds of ‘to do’ lists that I keep as well as follow a routine schedule, which helps me work more efficiently.

Since the holidays are just around the corner I thought it would be fitting to share some tips on creating a successful family holiday party. If you are the one hosting I hope these tips are of value to you.

1)Figure out your budget. Holidays are expensive. It’s not just the gifts that add up, but the food and decorations too. Establishing your budget in advance will help keep you in check so that you don’t go overboard on spending. And if your budget is on the lower end, consider a potluck style party or a Secret Santa type game when it comes to presents.

2)If you’re expecting 20 guests, plan on feeding 23. One of my biggest pet peeves is going to a party where there is not enough food or beverages. My grandma was your typical Jewish grandma in that no one ever walked away hungry. So this has been engrained in me to always have more than enough food. Some people have big appetites or there may be a last minute guest show up. You never know what may arise. Plus eating leftovers over the next few days, if there is plenty, is nice since it means less cooking to do the rest of the week.

3)Provide some kind of entertainment. If your family is anything like mine, then you know there are certain topics which should be avoided at the dinner table. And there are also certain family members whom you tolerate at gatherings, but rarely see or converse with otherwise. To avoid any potential feuds provide some kind of entertainment. It doesn’t have to be fancy. A couple games that my family and I play at Thanksgiving are Catch Phrase or Apples to Apples. These are easy light heart games that give you something to do other than make small talk all night, plus they are fun and always guarantee a good laugh.

4)Make sure there is enough seating and place settings. My husband’s aunt is notorious for not having enough seating at the family parties she hosts and it always causes headache. Be sure there is enough comfortable seating for everyone, even if it means having to rearrange the furniture to accommodate another table.qtq80-fPuUKz

5)Cook the turkey yourself! Many people order pre-cooked turkeys from the super market where they take it home and reheat it. Blah! If you’re hosting Thanksgiving do it right. Cooking a turkey is not that complicated. The hardest part is the prep which takes maybe a half hour tops. Once the turkey is prepped and in the oven then it cooks the rest of the day. You just have to monitor and baste it throughout but that’s it. It’s simple. Over the next few weeks I will be featuring some holiday cooking advice from some caterers on my blog. So if you’re interested in learning more follow me on Facebook (, or go check out my website directly at

Good luck with all your holiday parties and festivities this year. I hope the season is a wonderful, merry, and stress free one for you.”


Ashley Gelfound

Weddings & Events