Home » Blog » Exactly What to Do to Entertain Effortlessly This Summer

Exactly What to Do to Entertain Effortlessly This Summer

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

effortless entertaining this summer

I was reminded recently how easy it is to have people over when you have a proper setup. Not the setup of your home (although a good one does help) – I mean a setup for the things you need to entertain. I am a planner by nature. Though I love to entertain, there is always a lot of planning and preparation involved and spontaneity rarely enters into the equation.

We had a party for Jay a couple of weeks ago and since I was out of practice I kind of slacked off on some of the finer planning points. That led to what I thought would be last-minute scrambling but what I discovered was the party organization I did years ago is still serving me today. So setup was a breeze and cleanup was effortless. And I realized that proper setup means I can be more spontaneous this summer and do more in-the-moment entertaining. I’m sharing the exact steps to follow so you too can entertain effortlessly this summer!

Step 1: Gather

serving platters for charcuterie

The first thing to do is gather all the party things you need together so you can see what you have. The most important categories to organize so you can entertain effortlessly are:

  1. Serving
  2. Disposable eating
  3. Beverage housing

Serving includes platters, trays, large bowls, chip & dip sets, cheese boards and anything else you use to serve food. In my work with clients I often find things in this category scattered around vs. all together. Same with disposable eating utensils.  This includes paper plates, bowls, napkins, flatware and red solo cups. Gather all the disposable friends together so you can assess where you are in need and fill any gaps in your stock. By beverage housing I mean coolers, steel tubs & drink dispensers.

Gather the diaspora from each category together and spread it out on your dining table or other large surface so everything is visible.

Step 2: Declutter

cooler houses beverages for entertaining

The first thing you will notice is that you have more of all this stuff than you realized. Amongst your serving platters there are probably at least one or two that never get used because they are a weird shape or reference a super-specific holiday. Those are good candidates to let go. Serving platters and bowls are large and awkward to store. The goal is to keep them all together so you don’t have room for extras that you never use.

In the disposable eating category there are probably specific napkins (holiday) or plates (size & shape) that also get passed over regularly. Or maybe you have a bunch of plastic flatware that you have passed over in favor of more sustainable choices like bamboo. But you still have the plastic.  Whatever the case, peel off the stuff you aren’t going to use going forward.

My guess is there won’t be a lot to declutter in the beverage housing category, unless you have a large collection of coolers that you need to thin out. I kept a drink dispenser with a broken tap for years because I loved it, even though I couldn’t use it. If you have anything like that, let it go! A big part of entertaining effortlessly is not having to root through a bunch of useless stuff to get to the stuff you need…that takes effort!

Step 3: Organize

keep what you need for entertaining easy to access

Now comes the most important part of the process, organizing each category properly. To entertain effortlessly the things you need should be A) easy to find and B) easy to access. This doesn’t mean they have to occupy some prime real estate in your kitchen. In fact, they shouldn’t. But what is important is that you know exactly where they are and can get to them easily. So don’t bury the platters in a cabinet under a bunch of other stuff. Or keep your disposable eating utensils in an unmarked box on a shelf in the garage with 15 other boxes.

I keep all of my disposable eating utensils on a shelf in my mudroom in storage drawers like these. They are partially transparent and labeled so I know what is inside. I keep my serving platters and trays in 2 big storage drawers under our kitchen banquette. To be honest, they probably need a good declutter, I know there are some that I don’t really use.

The point is I know exactly where to find what I need. Then it’s easy to put away again when the party’s over.

I know it sounds so simple but a lot of people don’t have a simple system like this set up. It doesn’t take that much effort and keeps paying dividends years after you put it in place. I’m determined to do more spontaneous, effortless entertaining this summer – and let my system do the work for me!

Similar Posts

Method Seattle Comment Policy

We welcome relevant and respectful comments. Off-topic comments may be removed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *