Hey, it’s summer… almost… and as the weather is great, and the holidays are, to my biggest regrets, over, I am starting to wonder whether it is high time to come up with some ideas about my first garden party. I know what you are going to say – I have still not gotten a grip on cleaning and de-cluttering my home, how am I going to prepare my not-much-tended-to garden?
To be honest, I don’t really care that there are some weeds still peaking from the corners of the garden, the previous owners of my small house were devoted gardeners, and my backyard looks pretty amazing with flowers and bushes (whose names I haven’t quite figured out yet). Furthermore, I have done my research on gardening in Melbourne, and have booked a reputable company to help me maintain my backyard.
The mundane stuff aside, I want my first garden party to be unforgettable, so I have prepared a To Do list to guide me through the organization. As you already know I am rather absent-minded, and I need to set strict rules or I might get sidetracked and start planning a Hawaiian-themed garden party, go through getting decoration for a masquerade and end up with an unsuccessful combination of both.
Step 1. Choosing the colour scheme and the accessories for my first garden party
The easiest way to decide on a colour scheme for the party is to look through the patterns of the plants in the garden, and work your way up from there. However, I would strongly advice you against going with grey, if you have a rock garden for instance. Be bold, and don’t worry to go with bright, shiny colours – now is the time to do it!
As far as the accessories go, you should stick with durable, weatherproof accessories that you will be able to re-use all summer long. After all, you would want to organise more garden parties when the first one turns out to be such a success. Once you are done using them, you can store them in a large sealable bin, until the next time you are going to need them.
Step 2. Deciding on the food for my first garden party
The food is essential for the outdoor kitchen and garden party, it could make it or break it! The good news, however, is that you can always bet of seasonal fruits and vegetables, and create a healthy low-fat menu that will taste incredibly. There are numerous recipes on the Internet like this watermelon feta salad with mint, or choose something that you know your friends will fall in love with.
Don’t forget that there is no such thing like a summer garden party without proper barbecue… Let’s not kid around, some juicy stakes, properly grilled, will be the highlight of your meal. Personally, I know very little about how to become a barbecue master but I am willing to learn, and I have even looked through a few tutorials to get myself on the right track.
Step 3. The Beverages
While the food is the highlight of the garden party, the beverages are what gets this thing going, and every host should be able to serve tasty, thirst-quenching drinks. Thankfully, this is my zone of expertise, after all, I was a bartender the entire time I was in college. What you need to do is stock up on ice – nothing worse than running out of it in the middle of a hot afternoon. If you have a big-enough freezer, you could turn ice-serving into a form of art by getting cube trays in odd shapes, and adding mint leaves before freezing them.
While talking of mint leaves, the go almost with any light summer cocktail, so you might want to get some to add a flavour to the beverages. Furthermore, they could be used as decoration on berry desserts and whip cream. Another summer drink must-have is the club soda. It will jazz up juices, and make the ordinary white wine so much more exciting. As far as light beverages go, limes and lemons are your best friends, so you will have to buy more, and in no case cut them all before the event! It might be a nuisance but freshly cut lemons and limes indicate good hosting skills.
Step 4. Enjoy!
You are all set up for the big event. Consider adding some light chill out music that will be pleasurable for the guest, and will fine-tune the mood to a more relaxed atmosphere, and don’t forget to test-run your music system – you wouldn’t want any last-minute surprises. I believe that is it, you can enjoy the fruits of your restless planning, and have a fabulous first garden party.