DH and I moved into our house 8 months ago. The neighborhood has had a lot of turnover, if you will, with foreclosures and auctions (the builder went bankrupt and auctioned off the unsold houses he'd been renting out). Anyway, I grew up in a neighborhood where everyone knew everyone and I really miss that. So I decided to throw a "Meet the Neighbors" PartyLite candle party at my house. I invited 13 neighbor ladies (we live on the corner of the entrance to the subdivision, so I invited those around me). I'd only met two of them before, so I went door to door introducing myself and passing out the invitations. Only 2 people weren't home, so I left them in their front doors. I got such a great response - everyone I spoke to gave such positive feedback (even the husbands I talked to!) and said it was a great idea and how they were looking forward to getting to meet everyone, etc. That was Wed 12/29. My party is Tues and I've had only 2, T-W-O, rsvp's. I'm so sad.
I really don't think at this point anyone else is going to call, or just show up for that matter. I really wanted meet and get to know these people - to make the connections and form the bond. Neighbors are supposed to know eachother; be friendly and help each other. I feel let down by people I don't even know because it's like they don't want to know me. Even if they can't come or aren't into candles it would have been nice to at least get a phone call like "Hi this is Jane Smith from around the corner. I got your invitation but I can't make it. I thought I'd call to introduce myself...". Is that too much to ask? I don't know. I'm just really disappointed.
To clarify, all the people I invited but 1 have lived in the neighborhood for years. Just us and our neighbor are the new people on our end.
You could go back and see if they are actually planning on coming to the party. It is rude that they didn't rsvp but that way you can know for sure.
So I decided to throw a "Meet the Neighbors" PartyLite candle party at my house.
It's the economy, or whatever... lots of people don't go to parties where they are expected to spend money.
You'd probably get a better response having a "Meet the Neighbors" party or neighborhood block party if it wasn't associated with offering a product for sale. People don't want to feel guilty for not buying overpriced items they don't need or can purchase wholesale elsewhere, but they don't mind participating in a pot luck when available!
I used to sell on the home-party circuit. One thing I always told my hostess's to do (and now that my daughter sells Mary Kay, she tells her hostesses the same thing) is on Sunday night before your party, call everyone to remind them. Why Sunday? Because Sunday is when everyone is home, crashing after the weekend and getting ready for Monday morning. I dont' care if your party is Tuesday or the following Saturday .... you call them on Sunday night.
I've thrown two home-party events in the last two months myself. with each, I invited via facebook and email, and sent follow-up reminders 4 days before the party (4 days to give people time to check their email as I understand there are some weirdo's out there who have a life and DON'T spend all of their time on line! ). Most RSVP's to this will come at the last minute.
In the reminder email/msg, I said, "To those who have RSVP'd already, thanks! If you haven't had a chance to RSVP yet, please let me know asap so I can properly plan the right amount of food and baking time!" (If they know Debi is baking, they will show up! LOL!)
BTW, Partylite Candles are the only ones I even burn anymore! LUV them! I am SO grateful that a niece of ours recently decided to start selling these so now I have a convenient source! Guess what my girls got for Christmas!?
I bet they aren't coming because they feel like you're just trying to sell them candles, and just calling it a Meet the Neighbors Party. That's what I would think, and I wouldn't go. I hate parties where the main reason is selling things. Try just doing a neighborhood party, and leave the business out of it and I bet you'll get a better response.
I totally understand where you are coming from...I find that in this day and age people don't want to get to know their neighbors and stick to them selves.I have lived in this house now for 10 years and only really know 3 neighbors out of about 7-8..The others are there but you never see them etc..It's not like when we were kids and everyone knew and played with everyone..You left the house after supper and didn't come home until dawn was starting and your Mom DIDN'T worry about you.....those days are gone!!
In a coupla months do a Spring Tea to welcome spring and invite them back again.
I with the camp that say it's because of the PartyLite part. I personally don't like those kinds of deals. Because you go, feel like you have to buy something then end up spending money on something you really didn't want or need. The only time I have been to any of those types of deals was when it was family and there was no way out of it.
It may also just be the culture of the area not to RSVP. Around here, most people don't respond -- sure, they know they're supposed to, but no one considers it a big deal (except me, apparently!). For my daughter's birthday party, not long after we moved here, we needed RSVPs to plan a specific event, and I didn't get a single call back until I was in line buying balloons a half hour before the party. It was frustrating, of course, but I've learned not to expect responses around here, and I no longer plan things that aren't flexible, because I know I can't count on people. But I refuse to conform! I still RSVP!
I offered this suggestion once in a class as to the reason people don't know their neighbors anymore: The invention of the attached garage.
Before attached garages, we all pulled up in front of our house, stopped at the mailbox to get the mail, walked along the sidewalk, said hello to the neighbor, stopped to chat about the weather and how nice Mr. Johnson's new paint job looked, etc.
After attached garages, we hit the remote about a block from the house, pulled into the waiting car-cave, closed the door and removed our groceries in secret, away from prying eyes of any neighbors. No eye contact, no interaction, heck not even knowing if the house next door was occupied or not! (My former neighbor told me we'd been gone 4 months before the neighbors on the OTHER side of us knew! Neighbor #1 told neighbor #2, "Oh yeah! They moved out MONTHS ago!")
Attached garages. Great for loading and unloading in bad weather ...... bad for socialization of the neighborhood!
Out of curiosity,
if you really just wanted to meet your neighbors, why did you make it a "PartyLite candle" party??
Why not a "Hi, we are your new neighbors" party??
I am on board with the wagon that says that people will not show up because of that.
The rsvp thing- people are lazy, call and ask and stop mentioning anything about the candle stuff.
My parent's neighborhood was like that until we started having to fight zoning about some changes.
After that my mom started organizing a neighborhood thanksgiving brunch for everyone- it is now a 6 year standing tradition. People start asking about it in October. Everyone pitches in and has a great time.
If you really want to get to know your neighbors, don't start out with trying to sell them something.
Over the past 2 years I have been so inundated with invitations to home sales parties that I now decline any and all invitations to them. Partylite, Princess House, Pampered Chef, Mary Kay, lia sophia, Tupperware, Jockey, those outrageously overpriced baskets, on and on. Once 1 person has a party, 5 more jump on the bandwagon and they all invite the same people; in just 3 months after someone I work with started selling lia sophia I had 8 invitations to lia sophia parties. I have a stock email that I copy and forward in response to all invitiations. I promise you, few if any of the umpteen people who have invited me to their home sales parties have ever invited me to a barbecue, lunch, dinner, coffee so I can say with 100% certainty that they are not inviting me for my company, but for my credit card.
Sorry, didn't mean to go off on a tangent; pet peeve . Obviously, this was not your intent, but my guess is that your neighbors aren't thinking "nice of her to want to get everyone together" but instead are thinking "oh, great, someone else trying to sell me stuff". You should definitely try again without the sales attached .
To be fair, the answer is "it all depends". When I was in the selling part of these home party things, I had one hostess who DID have a "Let's get to know each other" party. She had about 15 people show up which is GREAT! It was a new subdivision and everyone introdiced themselves with something about their house. "I'm next to the pool .... I'm the second house from the entrance .... we're the ones with the big roses in front".
I would prefer to go to a home party thing that is ALSO a get to know you affair because it gives me a purpose to go, as opposed to just walking in some stranger's home and then trying to have conversation. At least with candles or tupperware there, we have something to help with the conversation.
And it might be an age thing. When I was in my 20's-30's, raising a family, working all the time, I just didnt' have time for this stuff. but now, with kids grown and a reduced workload, I find it fun to get together with the girls and oh yeah by the way there's some lady selling stuff in the corner of my living room. My "Champagne and Caviar Girls Night Out" have quickly become almost a tradition!
I love parties but I've declined everyone of my neighbours invites. Why? I'm not shy but I do like my privacy and I don't find that anytime I've made friends with a neighbour that it's worked out. Privacy becomes a thing of the past. I'm sure it's not the case everywhere but we have one very nosey neighbour that has actually made our lives hell for years. We all pray that she moves. Maybe that experience has burned me but I know a few people that have mentioned they keep to themselves for the same reasons.
THe other aspect is probably the partylite. Most folks will not want to come to an event where they are expected to spend money (whether you say "you don't have to buy anything!" or not). Example, last year I threw a birthday party/home party event and had 4 guests show up out of 100 invites. This year I threw a normal bday party and had about 25 RSVP's out of 130 - people forget, the RSVP thing has become a thing of the past and I don't understand why. I know I go out of my way to say yes or no as soon as possible.
I do think the suggestion of calling the Sunday before is a good plan. Try a different approach, like a BBQ or a game night or something?
I would prefer to go to a home party thing that is ALSO a get to know you affair because it gives me a purpose to go, as opposed to just walking in some stranger\\\\\\'s home and then trying to have conversation. At least with candles or tupperware there, we have something to help with the conversation.
Thanks Debi, I couldn\\'t have said it better! This was exactly why I didn\\'t just want to invite people to my house. I know if someone just invited me over out of the blue, chances are I would chicken out because I get nervous and am terrified of awkward silence. I can talk to strangers on the phone at work all I\\'d like - face to face is a whole other ball game for me. Candles are something everyone has experience with and I really enjoy them, so I wasnt worried that we wouldnt have anything to get the conversations going.
And as it turns out, I had nothing to worry about. My TOM-fueled emotions got the best of me I think. Even with a raging snowstorm I had a house full of guests - some who called the day of and even one an hour before, lol. Here\\'s the kicker - b/c of the weather the rep couldn\\\\\\'t make it , so not only was I the nervous hostess but also an impromptu rep. It all worked out and everyone had a good time and a lot of laughs, and Im so glad I did it. I got to know a little bit about each neighbor, and it turns out one of them does cakes too!
Speaking of cake, I made cupcakes and used IndyDebis buttercream (no substitutions this time) and they were fantastic! I did chocolate cupcakes with white frosting and white cake sparkles, then white cupcakes with blue frosting and white sprinkles. I got a lot of nice compliments and had no trouble sending the extras home with people.
So glad you had a great party!!