'Coming Home'

tvparty327.jpgWe tend to find a lot of things to throw a party for, but none are more worthy than a soldier returning to his or her family from war. It's a life-changing celebration. And if you've tuned into Coming Home, airing Sundays on Lifetime, you know exactly what we're talking about. The previews alone will make you burst into tears. But when you realize what these families give up to go about the business of protecting our nation, seeing them come home and surprise their loved ones makes all of us feel like we're a part of that family. So if you have someone dear in our military, or just love happy homecomings, call your friends and neighbors because we're throwing a Coming Home party!

Setting the scene:
Since we're probably not going to have any military personnel surprise us during our own party, we should focus on reminding guests just what these men and women go through and what they left behind when they headed into harm's way. Build a sand bunker in one corner of the room using stacked sandbags, sand and a desert camouflage net overhead. Place some desert boots and helmets along with a camo Bible on top of the sandbags. Stack ammo cans next to some desert camo backpacks near directional signs for Kabul and Kandahar. On the other side of the room, place framed pictures of happy families and kids - as well as posters by Norman Rockwell - next to All-American items such as baseball gloves, Snuggies and an inflatable Statue of Liberty. During commercial breaks show photos of real reunions on your computer from Youtube. Invitations should include personalized dog tags, which guests must wear to the party in order to pass through the front-door "security checkpoint."

Attire:
Out of respect, we won't have guests dress as though they're heading to Iraq, but suggest guests wear at least a military hat or patriotic shirt.

On the menu:
These folks are used to MREs, but they missed a traditional Thanksgiving meal with all the trimmings. Do it up right!

On the hi-fi:
Home by Michael Buble, Take Me Home, Country Roads by John Denver, Gee Ma I Wanna Go Home by Dolly Parton, I'll Be Home for Christmas by Bing Crosby, Mama I'm Coming Home by Ozzy Osbourne, Home by Daughtry.

The showstopper:
With this show on television, shares of Kleenex stock (Kimberly-Clark Corp. - NYSE: KMB) will go through the roof, but let's make things a little more personal by having guests e-mail you a new photo of themselves and their families hugging before the party so you can have custom Kleenex boxes ready for the tears. You'll thank us later.
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