Nothing makes my weekends happier than lazy nights on the front patio with our sweet neighbors.
It seems like nearly everyone on our block starts to trickle outside once the sun begins to set, and we basically takes turns moseying to each others front yard for cocktails and music and the occasional board game. Last weekend we hosted a Neighbor Night to celebrate the one-year anniversary of moving onto our street, and this coming weekend is sure to be filled with Halloween hugging and kids with tricks and treats!
G and I have always loved the chance to open our home to others, but I’m learning that sometimes the last-minute entertaining can be even more fun than anything formal, so I thought I’d share a few tips that make patio parties a breeze:
- The sustainable shopping options at Bambeco have always known how to nab my heart, and filling a basket with a few of these flannel throw blankets would be a great way to make your guests feel cozy while they kick back on your outdoor couch.
- All summer, we served easy cocktails to keep our guests cool (The Coco-Rose Spritzer = Coconut La Croix + Anew rosé poured over 3 frozen cherries!), but now that the weather is finally getting crisp, it’s time to mix up something a little more suitable for Autumn. I’m working on a drink made with apple cider vinegar and a splash of good whiskey (sweetened with this monk-fruit maple syrup), and have a strong hunch that it’s festive enough to be my go-to for Fall.
- Pantry snacks are the best way to make sure that you have something to serve up in a pinch. Whether it’s a Tuesday night drop-in or last-minute mancala tournaments, something simple like this easy hummus recipe is sure to do the trick: I like to blend one can of chickpeas (strained/rinsed) with garlic powder, liquid aminos, and dried rosemary leaves for a savory dip to serve with fresh veggies. If I’m really in a hurry, I fill a few pretty vintage bowls with pistachios, grapes, and dark chocolate chips to cover the coffee table with something to munch on while waiting for the take-out guy to drop off our dinner. :)
- Need a hostess gift for the gal who is always opening her door with a warm hug and a wine glass in hand? The gang at Bright Cellars is using science to get her the perfect Pinot Noir in no time at all. Not only does it make a great present, but the membership is also handy if you like to keep your wine rack stocked with little to no effort!
- Mr. Pepper loves playing bartender, but when the crowd gets bigger his trick is letting the guests serve their own beverages. We always offer to pour them the first drink, and then let each person know that they can help themselves to refills from the bar cart or fridge whenever they’d like. (Don’t forget to keep an ice bucket on hand so that no one has to see your ice cream stash every time they open the freezer for a cube!)
I love that we finally have a chance to embrace al fresco entertaining throughout the year, and have a feeling that this Fall is going to be the perfect chance to pull our friends together at Casa de Pepper!
Beautiful front porch photo borrowed from Kennesha.