Hey all, it’s Jillian, and I just hosted our annual Memorial Day barbecue party here at my brick nest. Isn’t it funny how we just posted about spring finally arriving, and then this past weekend was the unofficial start of summer??? Spring was pretty much nonexistent this year, and I am totally ready to move on to summer! We have been hosting a Memorial Day barbecue for about ten years now, and I always look forward to it. It started out small, but over the years it’s gotten quite large with lots-o-kids. We had a blast! Let me fill you in on the details of the party!
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TABLE SETTING AND DECORATIONS
My outdoor table got a new addition with these fabulous new blue swirl plates. I had bought similar ones in Nantucket last summer, so these fit right into my collection. The beautiful blue color is perfect for Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, or really any backyard gathering. I keep all my outdoor plates handy on this tray (similar) for summer al fresco dining. These placemats and napkin rings are also new additions, and combined with my old napkins (similar) and old placemats (similar), they are perfect to round out a patriotic red, white, and blue theme to the party.
I like to do simple floral arrangements in mason jars to keep it casual and easy. For these, I used blue hydrangeas with white and red roses (all from Costco). Easy and beautiful!
But I didn’t keep the red, white, and blue theme just to the place settings and floral arrangements! Here are a few more pictures of the festive party decor throughout the house. Many items below I have acquired through the years of hosting this party, with some new additions from my last trip to Target.
FOOD AND DRINK
In the early years of hosting this party, we would serve traditional hot dogs and hamburgers to our guests, and my father or father-in-law would often help out by manning the grill. However, as the guest list grew, the amount of people attending just got to be too large for one person grilling to keep up with, so last year I had the amazing local Bear’s BBQ cater the party, and it was a huge hit! The food was delicious and it was so much less prep work for me–I could actually enjoy the party too instead of working the whole time. This year we served pulled pork, brisket, and burnt end sliders with assorted salads. For the children and grown-ups alike we had mac and cheese, corn bread, and watermelon. We had snacks scattered around as well, such a these gorgeous strawberries in this mini colander.
On top of the usual bar offerings, I also like to serve a special concoction each year at my party. This year guests got to enjoy this strawberry lemonade sangria.
We also like to have something planned to keep the kiddos entertained. Last year it was super hot and we rented an inflatable water slide, but this year wasn’t quite as hot, so we got a bounce house, and the kids had a ton of fun! I also usually try to hire a high school babysitter to help keep an eye on all the kids playing (over thirty of them this year!), so the parents are better able to mingle, and I am able focus on hosting.
As the host, I like to wear something comfortable but stylish. This year, I wore my navy and white Lilly Pulitzer for Target jumpsuit with these fun red earrings for a patriotic look, paired with simple comfy sandals to complete the outfit. And of course, Lisa and her family were guests at the party. She wore a breezy, off-the-shoulder teal maxi dress with a pair of flat sandals (similar) and fun statement earrings (which she also wore here).
I hope you look had a great Memorial Day weekend, and that my party pics have gotten you excited for summer and inspired to host a barbecue yourself! The summer always goes by so fast here in New England, so we must seize the summer days and squeeze in plenty of al fresco parties while we can! Happy summer!
- My nest is not a museum, it is a comfortable, charming, unique, fabulous home with young children. I have high-end custom pieces, vintage tag sale finds, authentic antiques, colorful prints, and basic box store staple furniture. There are many ways to add functional style to your home and I can't wait to share my ideas and inspirations with you!