You guys!! Summer is almost here… it’s so close! We have been itching to kick off our summer even though the kids are in school for a few more weeks… So we decided to start in on our Summer Bucket List a little early. We kicked our summer off with one of my favorite activities, ‘have a BBQ with friends’. This one makes our list every year because we love it so much. And this year, we plan on having LOTS of BBQs! Want to make sure your summer BBQ goes off without a hitch? Here are my top five tips for planning a summer BBQ for families!
1. Plan ahead. We’re busy. Our friends are busy. This is not a new discovery! We love planning last minute get-togethers, but it’s SO hard to get our friends to actually come if we don’t give them at least two weeks notice. So do yourself a favor and start planning your next backyard BBQ now. You’ll thank me later 🙂
2. Make a meal plan ahead of time. I can be a bit scatterbrained at times… especially when I’ve got a lot going on (which is pretty much all the time). But it takes a lot of effort (and a lot of food!) to feed four or five families. If you’re planning a pot luck, assign a dish for each family. Then you can take care of the drinks and the meat. If you’re planning on cooking everything yourself, keep that in mind when you pick the side dishes! There’s nothing wrong with grabbing a fruit & veggie tray and chips & dip at the grocery store the day of the BBQ so you don’t have to cook seven different things.
3. Keep the kids entertained. We’re lucky that we have a HUGE backyard and we live on a cul-de-sac. That means there’s pretty much unlimited things for the kids to do. But it doesn’t hurt to plan ahead a little. We like to have sports equipment available and if the weather is really hot, we always have the kids bring their swimsuits. You never know when an epic water fight might break out! Either way, if the kids are happy, everybody’s happy!
4. Decorate, but don’t go crazy. For our last BBQ, I got a little decor happy at Target (you’ve seen all their new outdoor summer stuff, right?) and came home with all kinds of cute things. In the end though, I ended up taking back almost everything I bought because we just didn’t need it. I get so excited about all the backyard decor stuff thanks to Pinterest, but when it comes down to it, I don’t need a lot of stuff to enjoy the company of my friends and family. We were lucky to have the opportunity to try out the new TIKI® Brand torches… and once we got them set up I realized I didn’t really need any other decor! The glowing torches alone were enough decor! We really loved the glowing tabletop torch, especially when we realized that it actually changes colors! And the best part about the TIKI® Brand torches is that they did an amazing job of keeping the bugs away!
5. Clean up later. One of my goals for all of the backyard BBQ’s we’re planning for this summer is to be in the moment with my friends. It’s so easy to spend the whole evening cooking and serving food and then cleaning up and not have any time left over for just sitting and chatting… or chasing the kids around with the hose. And that’s what the summer bucket list challenge is all about, right? Choosing to intentionally create memories. So spend your evening with your friends and family. The dirty dishes and all seven baseball gloves and the half empty juice boxes will still be there the next morning… but your friends probably won’t be. So enjoy your night… and clean up later!
This post was sponsored by TIKI® Brand and we’re thrilled that they were kind enough to give away a prize package valued at $102.95 to one lucky reader! Enter the giveaway below! If you’d like to learn more about TIKI® Brand products, we’ve added a little info about each of the products we received, with a link to their website in case you’d like even more info. All products are available for purchase at your local Wal-Mart. All opinions expressed in this post are our own!
The TIKI® Brand Island King® Large Flame Torch kicks out a flame that is 5X Larger than traditional torches. Its fresh, sleek curves and bold gun metal finish will coordinate with any backyard decor. And the Twist & Pour™ Technology makes filling easy. The TIKI® Brand Glowing Torch & Table Torch create a stunning visual effect – day or night. The unique combination of natural flame PLUS a LED that illuminates the handcrafted glass from within. We used the Citronella Torch Fuel with all of our torches.
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