Sunday, August 17, 2008

Entertaining on a Dime

Entertaining can be fun but it can also be expensive. We've learned how to entertain without breaking the budget. Here are a few things we do to save money:

1. Plan ahead. I almost always have cake mixes, pasta salad, etc on hand for last minute entertaining. I buy things when I find them deeply discounted. If you know an event is coming up, start buying a few items at a time so that there isn't one large expense.

2. Build your ____ bar. Nachos, tacos, baked potato, pasta, etc are fun to customize. Lay out several toppings and let everyone make there own dinner.

3. Potluck. We love to have potlucks because it is fun to try new dishes. If it is a small group, I assign a specific course and attempt to have the menu flow together. If it is a large group, I leave it up to everyone as to what to bring.

4. Shop end of season sales for paper goods. I hit the 75% tables at the party good stores so that I always have disposables on hand. For small groups the fine china is great but who wants to do dishes for a large group? Many times I can find packages of plates for a quarter.

5. Dessert only. It isn't necessary to serve a full meal each time, sometimes it is fun to simply have dessert and coffee.

6. Keep it simple. Some of the best parties I've been to have served only hotdogs, chips, and a dessert. Too many times we go overboard trying to add a bunch of dishes or something fancy but simple is just as great.

Do you have any other suggestions on how to entertain on a dime? Feel free to leave a comment or email me to let me know.


thediaperdiaries said...

I, like you, stock up on these things when they are cheap. This week at Walgreens plastic utensils are on sale for $.39 and I bought several even though I didn't "need" them.

Julie said...

I'm heading to Walgreens this afternoon and I will add these to my list as I'm getting low on spoons. Thanks for the heads up!

AudreyO said...

Wow, these are some awesome ideas. We do try to stock up when things are on sale.

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