Life in Mascara: July 2018

Wednesday, July 4, 2018


With Summer in full swing I find myself wanting to be outside enjoying all the fun activities. And nothing screams Summer like having a barbecue. I love having my friends over and sharing laughs and especially food! This doesn't mean that it is time to break the bank. Let me show you how you can stay within budget and still host a party.

1. Decide on the menu.
Keep it simple. You will be outside probably most of the time. It will be hot. Try a no fuss menu. Burgers, hotdogs, simple salads. Things like that. You aren't trying to impress anyone. It is about being together and enjoying being in community.

2. What can you make from scratch?
Want fries, cake, and burger patties? Great! Me too! Chances are you already have the ingredients at home to make these. Give yourself some time and plan out when you can make these. You can even make some of these ahead of time. It is way more affordable to buy ground beef, especially if you discount buy it, and then experiment with what you season it with. In my case lots of garlic mmmm. So my patties are not perfectly round. Who cares? They taste just as good or even better than the premade ones at the store for a fraction of the price. And don't get me started on the price of store bought cakes! In upwards of $15 easy. Bake from scratch or a $2 box mix (store brand) will taste amazing!

3. Make it a potluck.
I love trying out new recipes and my biggest source of inspiration are my friends. Often when we eat at their house or offer to bring something to ours I get the recipe for it. So turning your bbq party into a potluck can turn into a fun recipe swap! You can even ask your friends to bring the recipe already typed out or on index cards to share with the rest of your group. Now you have another fun element to your party!

4. Skip the decor.
As much as you want to make your home look like something out of a magazine spread there is no need for it. Your friends and family won't remember all the props you had at your photobooth. They WILL remember what a great time they had together.

Everyone has different taste in alcohol. Some people don't even drink. I normally provide water, tea or soda (whatever surplus I have from a coupon haul), and will buy one case of beer. I advise everyone of what I will serve and let them know to feel free and bring their own. 

And remember, enjoy having everyone over. Really that is what it is all about.