You can entertain friends at home in so many ways and enjoy the moment with your guests without stress or spending time alone in the kitchen.
Tired of doing the same routine every time? Sometimes entertaining can seem like such a hassle, from cleaning your home to all the preparation required so it’s easy to fall back on ideas that worked previously.
Time goes by so fast, if we look again another year has passed and we have not enjoyed the company of the people we value in our lives. Let’s explore some great entertainment ideas and how to implement them so that you can entertain friends and family more regularly:-
Planning and preparing ahead of time
I love lists, don’t you? It makes life so much simpler. When planning ahead you can jot down:
Ideas for the kind of theme you are doing –
Which will normally give an indication as to whether you will be entertaining indoors, on the patio or alfresco.
The menu: the more items that can be prepared or bought in advance the better.
Bar cart and/or coffee cart. A large bucket of ice can be used to keep drinks cold
Number of guests – a smaller group allows you to give more attention to everyone
Decor, lighting and seating. Remember to soften up hard seats.
Possible entertainment for the kids
Creating a welcoming space to socialize in
Depending on your theme when you entertain friends at home, you want your guests to have an area where they can chat and laugh while they relax and enjoy the company
If you plan to start entertaining in your home more regularly, you’re going to want to have stylish sets of plates, glasses, utensils, and linens for folks to use.
Outsourcing and involving guests
If your time is stretched a bit thin you can make use of a catering company.
If you plan on entertaining more regularly you can also ask your guests to bring along something they are known for eg a delicious salad or a dessert. Involving your guests also gives them a sense of belonging.
Decor and lighting to create the perfect ambience
Lighting is essential and if you are not entertaining your friends on the patio with lighting you may have to consider other options.
Everyone who has seen Mamma Mia will know how effective Bistro lights or Fairy lights can be.
You can visit the nearest camp store for lamps and there there are candles.
Those old brass candle sticks are now very in vogue and can create a delightful centrepiece with a bit of greenery or flowers.
When choosing your palette for your decor choose 3 main colours. You can use different colours for the different seasons and themes.
Kids should enjoy the entertainment as well
If you and your friends have children you will appreciate the importance of ensuring they also enjoy the visit. Not only so it can be a pleasurable event for them as well but you don’t want your guests to leave early because their children are upset.
Ideal themes to entertain friends at home with
As I mentioned before, it is easy to fall back on the same old ideas which have worked well for you before and that is perfectly fine but if you want to explore other ideas:-
There is a certain magic to a very informal invite on the spur of the moment. You may have bought too many apples at the farmers market so what a great idea to phone up a few friends to pop over for some apple pie and ice cream.
Maybe your veggie garden is doing particularly well this year and you have enough tomatoes to feed an army. This is an ideal time to invite a few friends over for homemade Marinara sauce with spaghetti and maybe a glass of wine.
Fire up the grill
In Africa, with absolutely marvelous weather, this may be referred to as a barbeque but if you talk about a “braai” most people know what to expect and is the “go-to” of entertainment.
There are so many ideas when it comes to an outdoor cookout but basically entails throwing a few pieces of meat on the grill with a few types of vege accompaniment, side dishes like a variety of salads and a desert
Drinks of choice can be your favourite signature cocktail or maybe some beers, seltzers or spritzers in a tub of ice.
Entertain friends at home with a fun-filled night of classic board games. This is perfect for young and old alike.
A Charcuterie Board is the easiest way to appeal to a wide variety of palates. Enter a charcuterie and cheese board: With a mix of cheeses, meats, nuts, fruit and bread, it’s an easy way to put out a savoury-meets-sweet spread that has a little something for everyone.
Ordering a variety of pizzas is a simple way of entertaining and goes down well with a bucket of ice filled with everyone’s favourite brews. Park it nearby so guests can help themselves to a cold one when the play gets hot.
Dinner and dessert
A cooked sit-on dinner probably has the most preparation involved but can also be very rewarding, especially on a cold winter night.
Here the menu is usually the star attraction but there are a variety of meals that can be made ahead of time. Whether you prefer a roast, a hearty stew or lasagne, you can prepare the side dishes so that you spend minimal time in the kitchen.
A delicious dessert with trimmings and fresh bread rolls is a must and rounds off your perfect meal perfectly.
A Buffet encourages guests to casually linger and enjoy conversations they would not normally have. It also frees up the hostess to enjoy the visit as much as everyone else.
Ideal food for a buffet may include: Coronation chicken, Vegetable tortilla, Garden salad, Crushed potato salad, Coleslaw, Pasta Niçoise, Barbecue chicken drumsticks, Fresh fruit on skewers, small pastries and fresh rolls
What an ideal way to start the weekend. Entertain friends at home with a Saturday morning brunch that can include
Traditional breakfast food, such as bacon, eggs, and toast or biscuits.
Donuts, banana bread, cinnamon rolls and waffles are very popular.
Include a fresh fruit salad with yoghurt.
Fresh rolls or French toast with cheese, hams and Spanish sausages go down very well
Mimosa and Bloody Mary’s and/or a selection of coffee, teas and syrups are normally served with a brunch
entertain friends at home brunch table setting
Entertain friends with a Summer Pool party
You can entertain friends at home by your backyard pool and on hot summer days it will be thoroughly appreciated. Not only will the kids be delighted but the adults and you can completely relax and enjoy the afternoon.
An outdoor grill, a Charcuterie Board or a variety of platters are easy self-serve options. I prefer ordering my platters from a local retailer.
The bucket of ice with beer, seltzers and spritzers is perfect for adults and a separate bucket, lest someone get confused, for the kid’s juices and cold drinks are ideal
An ice cream bar for dessert is very popular, you can include plain store-bought vanilla ice cream on ice with a variety of sauces and toppings like nuts, sprinkles and whipped cream so that each guest can make their own Sundae cup.