Easy Living

for Entertaining



                                                           Easy Fast Five: Entertaining


                 With summer coming and the end of school year is the time for                                                                          summertime entertaining, ushered  in by the graduation shindig and                                                                       BBQ's.  I've got 5 easy ideas for your next party, BBQ's, weddings, July                                                                     4th & family  re-unions to name a few.  Here are 5 super easy                                                                                 inexpensive things you can do to kick it up a notch without spending                                                                     a fortune.

                                           1. Serving Tray Update


            I love clear dishware and glass because the food is showcased on it. But                                                                  if you'd like to give your serving trays an update without breaking bank                                                                  then try adding some cord or floral ribbon around the edge, just                                                                              underneath Cord comes in a variety of colors. Valentines, think red. Easter                                                              think  pastels. July 4th think red, white, & blue. 
             Floral ribbon comes in lots of variety also. Includes pearls, glitter &                                                                          different colors. Pearl lined floral ribbon great for a  bridal shower or                                                                      baby shower. Simply affix with glue gun glue,  when the party is over                                                                      simply  pull off. 
             So update that Hor d'oeuvre plate with this easy affordable project.


                                2.  Serving Bowl Dress-Up                                


            - serving bowls Can get an update too by dressing them for dinner                                                                           using Burlap. Burlap now comes in a variety of colors and sizes. If                                                                             you've seen it in the stores and wondered what to do with it, here                                                                           you go. You can use a glue gun to affix, or just tie yarn or jute                                                                                  around in a cutesy bow. You can even attach a label letting guest 
              know  what the dish is.  

                                        3. Personalized Placemats


            -  Placemats dont have to cost a fortune and this idea makes them easy                                                                     to clean since you don't clean these.  Scrapbook paper comes in                                                                             different sizes AND themes. Buy a Large sized Scrapbook paper                                                                               book. Books are $5 & $10. Small dinner party u can buy the $5 one.  If                                                                     there is a theme find one that fits your theme and use them as placemats. They                                                     even have Glitter pages. Since its paper you can write on them & assign seating, or                                               you can also make this your personalized thank you, by writing salutations, such                                                     as "(name), thanks for coming", " (name), It was gr8 seeing you again".  When                                                         your guest are in between courses and done with their plates they'll see your lovely 
                thank you' s.

                                                  4.  Provide BabySitting


                         -if you know most of your friends have younger children. Let them                                                                 know on the invitation that On-site child care is available. Guest will be                                                                  guest knowing their children are nearby being cared for but out of sight                                                                so they can enjoy themselves.  Make it easy for them to accept your invite.                                                             You can make this an RSVP thingSo you can plan kid food and fun activities                                                           or buy the latest kids movie, no one's seen yet. If you can afford to hire                                                                   someone, do it. If not and you have a niece or teenage daughter pay them                                                             20 plus a favor or two depending on the number of kids. An evening out                                                                 with the car, or a movie ticket, or $20 plus a $15 Itunes card might do it too.                                                           Designate an area for the childcare away from the adults. Parents will be                                                                 able to have fun and relax, but yet feel secure knowing if there's an issue,                                                               they are right there.  Providing childcare gives everyone the opportunity                                                                 to attend your gathering. Let parents know they can tip the sitter, and your                                                             out of pocket costs, could go down depending on your arrangement you                                                               make with the teen in charge. Like you pay the difference of what they                                                                   dont make in tips.  

                                                   5. Brown Bag Surprise  -


                    Brown lunch bags are inexpensive and it's easy to bake some cookies. Whether                                               your having a small dinner party for 2 or a BBQ for 20. Everyone will love grabbing                                                 their goodie bag when they head home, but this Goodie bag will have something                                                 extra in 1 of the bags. A $10.00 gift card, for ex. My rule is for every 10 guest add                                                   a gift card. 20 guest 2 gifts cards, 30 guest, 3 . Two cookies in each bag, and a gift                                                 card in 2 of the bags, each guest get 1, couples get their own individual bags.                                                         Guest will love these special party favors, word will get around, and your parties                                                     will become a fun guessing game for everyone. Just be sure to choose cookies                                                       that anyone can eat, in case anyone has allergies, and wrap the cookies in plastic                                                   wrap, So the gift card doesn't get chocolaty, lol.

                     I hope you enjoyed this Easy Fast Five: Entertaining. While not all a                                                                    decor tip, these ideas can make your parties and get-togethers more                                                                       successful, memorable, and will improve turn-out, and might just save                                                                     you you a few dollars too.

                                                                                                    Keep it Easy!
                                                                                                  Yvonne Doñate
            Added April  25,  2015




                                                 Bejeweled Centerpiece Bowl


                   If your doing a bit of entertaining this spring/summer, have I got                                                                     a project for you. Its easy but it does take a little bit more of your time,                                                                   than most projects featured on this site, but it is worth the  extra effort,                                                                   trust me. 
             If your into pretty things, that make a huge impact on your decor,                                                                           then this piece is a project you'll have to tackle. Whether your                                                                                 entertaining or using it year round, this is an eye-catcher. Especially at night!


                                      My Items needed included:

                    1 Glass Bowl (purchased at thrift store for 1.97)
                    2 Glass Candle-holders (also purchased at thrift store for .87 ea.)
                    4 bags of glass gems also called floral gems (1.00each) 
                   Glue Gun
                   Glue sticks
                   1-2 Bags of Pebbles  (1.00 each)
                    Candles or flameless candles

                    My Total Cost $13.00 


             TIP: Use a lint roller to quickly pick up crumby messes on your                                                                             tablecloth without disturbing guest. 

                 What to Do: 

            With your heated glue gun start individually affixing the flat side of the                                                                   gems to the outside of the glassware until completely covered, as best                                                                   you can. 
           Its a little bit tedious depending on the size of the glassware, my bowl                                                                    took 1 hour, i watched a 1 hr tv show, while doing it. The two                                                                                  candle-holders took 20 mins each.  


         Once done let sit about 15 minsthen, Check for dropped gems, you                                                                         will have a couple, and re-adhere those, add your pebbles inside the                                                                       glassware, then set your candles on top of your pebbles. At night                                                                             light your candles and/or turn on the flameless, the effect of light                                                                           coming through the lightli clored gems is amazing. Well worth the                                                                           1hr and 40.  They don't look half bad in the daylight either. 



         NOTE: I used both flameless in the candleholders and a real candle in the                                                     big bowl in spite of the photo just above, The real Candle gave off a pure                                                       Blue-white glow, while the flameless gave off a warm golden glow, this                                                         way you can see which effect you like best. 

                                                                                       Keep it Easy!
                                                                                      Yvonne Doñate

            Added April 11,  2015