When the gathering is over, what do your floors look like? Chances are vacuuming, mopping or even more dramatic cleaning will be required.
Of course, choosing low maintenance flooring makes this a more manageable situation. Tile, laminate or stain-protected carpeting helps fend off the mess that is destined to occur in this situation. If this is not an option, here are other suggestions.
To start, choose your snacks wisely. Non-greasy choices will help protect your floor. Replace chips or crackers with thin slices of French bread and cheese rather than drippy dips. Pretzels work better than buttered popcorn. Avoid beverages that can spot your floor. Beer and lemon-lime soda is better than red wine and colas.
Create a sandwich bar in the kitchen to let people prepare their own meals during the ads. Place cold cuts, cheese, potato or macaroni salad, and condiments with easy access and plenty of choices. Add some sturdy bread or rolls cut hand-size so that people can create several custom sandwiches in manageable sizes. And make sure you use plates that are sturdy. Chocolate chip cookies are a great dessert that stays pretty tidy.
What if your spouse and guests insist on the messier options? Well, consider throwing a beach towel at the front edge of the sofa running the length and under the coffee table. Then you can relax and let the chips fall where they may.