Invite the Neighbors

Since I was a little girl I can always remember our home being open to all.  My parents were able to build their own house, my grandfather and dad were the architects and built the house I grew up in.

8 tips to hosting a backyard BBQ party this summer


We moved into our “mansion” after living in a 1200 sqft home, all 6 of us, so the space was daunting.  But we soon grew into it and used every square inch. From Halloween parties, to Christmas Eve celebrations, hosting church groups and sleep overs.  My childhood was full of hosting.


Now as my own family grows I find myself following in my mother’s footsteps as if it was only natural.  Hosting can sometimes feel stressful, especially if you are not used to doing it.


I’ve put together some tips to make hosting this summer a little easier.  And of course I had to take beautiful fancy pants photos to go along with it.  But most of the time when we host friends and family I capture the memories right on my camera I have with me in my back pocket.  My phone!


Along with this hosting guide I also have a 5 Day Challenge to help you learn to take dreamy, fun summer pics right on your phone.  These Backyard BBQ parties and days at the pool are short and you don’t want to forget a single moment!


Join the 5 Day Challenge: How to take Frame worthy phone pics now.


Now on to my 8 best tips when hosting summer fun!

  1. One pot means – there is a reason this is number 1.  Toss a roast in the crock pot, add some tomato, onion, carrots, whatever you have in the fridge.  Yes it’s hot but you can shred it and serve it over buns if you want!
  2. Ask for help – even if you’re hosting it’s completely fine to ask friends to bring a bagged salad or water bottles.  People love helping and there is no badge of honor for “doing it all”. Have an idea of suggestions that people can pick up on their way over.
  3. Kid Table – I grew up LOVING the kid table.  No grown ups telling me to stay in my seat or finish eating!  We live in the 100+ degree weather and I still stick the kid table outside, easier to hose off and kids don’t care, they love being sweaty!
  4. Kitchen Clean up – The excuse of, my house is a mess, does not work here.  I typically keep my house pretty organized thanks to Allie Casazza but if I have a little clutter I keep a small tub in the laundry room to set the mail or recent art projects in so I can clear room for food
  5. Invite a friend – when we ask our close friends over we always encourage them to invite friends too.  Friends of friends are required to come empty handed though. They will need both hands for new hugs and handshakes
  6. Details – when you can, swing by and grab grocery store flowers or pick wild greenery from the park.  “Organizing a centerpiece” is a project I give the kids to do or even work on while we munch on appetizers.
  7. Throw away – it may not be the most ‘green’ choice but we tend to do throw away dishes and utensils.  On the occasion we use “real” stuff, it’s not fancy and everybody is in charge of clearing their own plate and loading it in the dishwasher, we love you but that doesn’t mean you can’t slide a plate onto the rack!
  8. Assign Jobs – when we have larger gatherings I’ll write out the jobs that need to be done to keep the even running smoothly.  As friends arrive they each get to pick one from a jar and be responsible for that job the whole time. Some jobs are – take out the trash (yup), write place cards (special and fun), make sure everyone has a seat, drink duty, service line clean up, etc.


Stress free party hosting tips


Tips for party hosting


Backyard BBQ Tips


Don’t forget to join the 5 Day Challenge to frame worthy phone pics so you can snap beautiful, dreamy pics of your guests and family as you host the summer away!


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