4th of July here in Central Texas is the American ideal. Having grown up with a moderately sized celebration back in Montana, I had no idea what I was in store for last year. We are fortunate to be a moments drive from Belton. This year they are preparing to celebrate their 100th celebration. Of course, Belton isn’t the only town with happenings this time of year. Temple has a large celebration and firework show, as does Fort Hood. There are rodeos to cheer on and BBQ to enjoy.
As moms we often find ourselves hosting a gathering of friends and family. I still remember the hectic event that was my first time hosting the 4th of July. It was highlighted by my then husband trying to bbq and getting the flames coming up out of the grill by impressive heights. The ending of the day may or may not have been a firework tipping over and nearly getting the entire group of us. Here are a few tips on simplifying your festive day.
Start with your cleaning. Don’t worry over every closet and room. Focus just where the main flow of traffic will be. If guests won’t be going anywhere other than the back porch and the restroom don’t worry over the laundry room on the other side of the house.
Make sure you have extra. Extra food. Extra drinks, Extra toilet paper.
When you are worrying over what to serve on burgers or as sides just remember: keep it simple.
Instead of going full Pinterest decorations and planning an array of tiny, time-consuming appetizers, step back. Set out a clean tablecloth and then add in basics. Keep it timeless.
When guests arrive set down the spoon you were stirring with and go greet them. Find everyone drinks and walk with them to where the party is.
If you are planning any type of fireworks, check with local laws first. Then have a garden hose and a bucket handy and ready.
If you have plans to move the party to enjoy one of the area firework shows try and have any chairs or blankets packed and in the car before the party, complete with drinks and snacks.
Lastly, let the dishes wait a little. Sit and relax with your guests. You are all there to be together!
When I am hosting a get-together my favorite dishes are Family Secret (a cool pink dessert that everyone likes) and little smokies with dipping sauce. Since I can’t share the recipe for Family Secret for obvious reasons, I will share the recipe for my favorite sauce for the little smokies.
Little Smokies Dipping Sauce
1C Grape Jelly
1 pkg of little smokies
Mix together in a saucepan over medium heat until the mustard and jelly have melted
together. Serve in a dish alongside the smokies, or pour over while cooking.