Monday, February 2, 2015

Getting Back to Basics with Simple Entertaining

I read this blog post on entertaining last week and found it really inspiring.  I can't remember which blog this link came from however I loved it just the same and forwarded to a friend of mine.  There are two thoughts when it comes to entertaining and that is (i) you have to spend days getting the house entertainment ready and (ii) it's a lot of work.  I do a lot of family entertainment, family BBQ's, Birthday's, Easter, Christmas etc. however I haven't had friends over for entertainment outside of a couple of take away meals and morning tea.  The other thing is as the kids get to a certain age their social life goes onto the calendar and therefore families trying to catch up don't have a lot of free nights outside of school and sport commitments and family birthdays, events etc. so it just doesn't happen.  I loved this idea of mixing friends and having a simple dinner.

My best friends know if their dining room has loads of clean washing on it folded ready to be put away and/or ready to be folded, that I don't care or think less of them for "living" and that I'm coming to see them for a chat and not their dining room table with nothing on it.  I love that those friends love that they don't have to "clean up" before I get there.  When I say clean up I mean, get all that washing and folding done before I come to have a coffee and they love me for that.  However there are friends outside of that "come over and see me even if I haven't had time to mop the floors" that we would like to have a neat and tidy house for before we considered having them over.  The idea of the entertaining post above is somewhere in between.  Lately I'm somewhere in between all or nothing and it's what is inspiring me and exciting me.

The other thing when you are going to be entertaining, is that you do make the extra effort to sort through that pile of magazines sitting on the floor or hang that clock up that has been sitting on the sideboard for oh so long because you thought the hook required something other than a normal picture hook but it didn't and 15 minutes later the job is done.  So there are good things about having guests over because some jobs get done however you also don't want to run yourself into the ground either just so friends can come over.

The blog post above could inspire any simple meal like home made Pizza's, Curry night, Indian night, Chinese night however I liked the "Simplicity" of the meatballs and I liked that the work was done before the night and that the slow cooker was used so that all that had to be done on the night was cook up the pasta.  As for a dessert at the end of the evening....I would be thinking even a tray of the most delicious chocolate home made brownies (no plates, just bite sized sweetness for adults and kids for dessert using their hands)....remember it's about simplicity as it's not an al la carte meal with fine bone china.  It's about chatting, it's about laughing, its' about getting to know people, it's about mixing friends and entertaining at home with simplicity.  It's about sitting on the couch with a paper plate and a fork, even paper cups, it's about getting together with simplicity and affordability.  I'd say 2 kgs of mince and some herbs and spices and a couple of packets of pasta and home made brownies would come under $25-$30 as the brownie ingredients would probably already be in your pantry/fridge.  You can't go out to dinner for $25, nor can you hear your friends sitting at the other end of the table at a restaurant.  You don't have to have a table to sit at for dinner, couch, chairs, kitchen bench, picnic blankets on the floor for the kids.  Set up a tea/coffee tray and cups next to the kettle and people can make their own coffee and tea if they would like to have a cuppa with the brownies.  That way you are not "serving" everyone, taking coffee orders and missing out on relaxing yourself because as the host we know you can be run off your feet but this idea is about the opposite.  I wonder if this post inspires you as well.


  1. Nothing like people coming over to get you to whiz around and get some things sorted out!!
    Oh Kathy, I read that blog post and my eyes filled with tears!!! What a wonderful, wonderful thing to do. I have my Dad and Nan around every week and it's always phones away, tv off, wine and something hearty, I love it....very inspiring indeed.
    Jan x
    P.S I had a comment on my blog about the garlic in QLD "in queensland its march for latest plantings of garlic i think you can plant from december onwards? try green harvest for information, i like them as they are in qld they also have garlic for sale too." just thought I'd pass it on to you!

    1. Thanks Jan I've bought things from green Harvest and I just need to get my skates on this year with the garlic. Kathy