We know you don’t want to admit it but…it’s about time to bid those sunny days and balmy nights “Adieu.” But before cooling off into Autumn, why not throw one last seasonal bash? Here’s how to pull together that end-of-summer par-tay (without burning up your bank account doing it):
Celebrate the great outdoors while you still can by transforming your backyard (or rooftop deck for our city gals) into a makeshift vineyard! Turn your home inside out by making your garden your own outdoor dining room. Start by moving your dining table and chairs out onto the lawn. (Don’t worry about the weather, you’re not going to leave them out overnight!) If that’s not realistic, borrow a fold-up table from a friend or rent one for next to nothing from a Party Rental Store (usually pretty cheap). Don it with summery tablecloth and ﬁnish it off with your best dinnerware. No paper plates or plastics here, ladies — let’s show a little class!
To really fancy things up, print out a little menu to let your guests know what goodies are coming up.
Add fresh ﬂowers in a vase (before they go out of season!) and some tealights to twinkle in the night and play some of your favorite tunes. If your space and discretionary income allow, purchase a small ﬁre pit to enjoy later on. Yank the pillows from your cozy indoor couch and use them as cushions on the ground (just keep a Tide stick on hand for any wine, er, grass stains).
For an added special touch, string globe lights overhead. You can ﬁnd them at Target or other outdoor stores for as little as $12.99 for an 18-foot strand. A small investment for a truly fabulous look!
Then cook your little Recessionista heart out and serve your guests your best $5 wine (Trader Joe’s is full of them). Plate their meals and sit down to laugh and talk as you regale in your Garden Escape. Then, once you’ve gobbled up all the fare, gather around the ﬁre pit for some S’mores and after dinner drinks!
Alycia Lane is a morning news anchor for the L.A.- based NBC station. A multiple Emmy, Edward R. Murrow and Golden Mic award winner, she has worked on-air in other major TV markets such as New York, Miami and Philadelphia – before landing in the City of Angels. Her other passions include yoga, cooking, baking, interior design and all things domestic.