Getting Your Home Ready for Summer Entertaining

Winters in North Idaho can be harsh, and the charm of hibernation loses some of its allure after three or four months. As the warmer months begin rolling in, you can’t help but look forward to hosting some epic outdoor parties and barbecues.


At Aspen Homes, we know how important summer entertaining is for people who call North Idaho home. Summer means heading to the lake, going camping, and opening your home to friends and family. Aspen Homes always pays attention to the outdoor spaces in the homes we design, whether it is creating expansive front porches or large decks and patios. North Idaho summers are beautiful, especially in the Coeur d’Alene area. 


Ten Prep Tips!


As summer approaches, it can be hard to hold back your excitement and anticipation. But before you get too antsy, be glad you have a little time before those sun-kissed days and long evenings arrive. Use this time to get your home summer-ready. Whether you’re the type to orchestrate elaborate dinner parties or you prefer the laid-back charm of a potluck barbecue, a successful summer soirée hinges on meticulous preparation and thoughtful planning.


Hosting an unforgettable event without over-stressing requires foresight and some clever strategies. Here are ten tasks you can do now to prepare for your summer gatherings.


  1. Stock up on versatile party supplies: Take inventory of your serving ware – paper plates, plastic utensils, tablecloths, trays, and decorations. Ensure you have a good supply of neutral-colored items you can supplement with decorations that let you adapt your party to any theme, whether patriotic for Memorial Day and the Fourth of July or celebratory for graduations, Father’s Day, birthdays, or just some summer fun. Consider investing in bulk disposables to save time when events come up on your calendar. When you have materials on hand in a variety of sizes and styles, you’ll also be able to host impromptu gatherings without breaking a sweat. 


  1. Elevate your outdoor decor: Inspect your outdoor seat cushions, pillows, lounges, beach towels, and other summer textiles for wear or fading. Also, look at your pots, flower beds, benches, and patio furniture to see if they are in good shape. Even if it means buying just a few new accent items, sprucing up your porch, patio, or deck can significantly enhance the outdoor atmosphere. From adding pops of color with vibrant cushions and rugs to incorporating lush greenery, lanterns, and floral arrangements, there are countless ways to create inviting outdoor living areas that beckon guests to linger.


  1. Prioritize outdoor maintenance: Before your first gathering, dedicate time to deep cleaning your outdoor areas and refreshing your landscaping, from power washing your siding to pulling weeds. By mulching flower beds, planting some low-maintenance perennials, and trimming hedges, you can ensure your fresh and neat exterior sets the stage for a comfortable gathering. You don’t have to go overboard; you just have to be thoughtful and intentional. Run an objective eye over your outdoor entertaining area to see what needs attention, and tackle a few small tasks each week. As spring progresses, you will be amazed at what even a few hours of effort every week can achieve in changing the overall feel of your yard, making it neat, welcoming, and comfortable.


  1. Prepare your indoor space: Even if you plan to host most events outdoors, a thorough spring cleaning is essential to ensure your home is guest-ready, particularly bathrooms and kitchen. A thorough cleaning before summer will enable you to keep the house clean with less effort week after week. Tackling it at the beginning of the season means you can quickly get your home in order when you host an event. It also means that you can have total confidence for spur-of-the-moment guests and never need to hesitate or second-guess yourself when you want to say, “Hey, why don’t you come on over!”


  1. Stock up on Non-Perishables: Another tip for keeping stress low is to stock up early on easy-to-serve snacks and refreshments. Load up the charcoal briquets, propane tanks, or pellets. Fill your freezer with burgers and buns, frozen appetizers, or other foods that lend well to entertaining. Keep cases of drinks on hand, as well as chips, crackers, dip mixes, condiments, and other non-perishables. Long-life refrigerated items like cream cheese and sour cream on hand makes it easy to whip up a delicious spread or dip in short order.


  1. Think about recreation: While it is always fun to sit, eat, drink, and converse, there is nothing quite like games to make an event festive, especially if children are around. Cornhole, ping pong, spike ball, four square volleyball, and other games are easy to store and bring out at a moment’s notice, and you don’t need a large space to play them. They are a great way to break the ice for your guests who may not know one another, and many of these games can be played by adults and kids together. 


  1. Music sets the mood: Now is a good time to curate playlists for your summer gatherings. Pick different styles of music depending on the types of gatherings you expect to have, such as a playlist for an evening of dancing and one that sets the mood for a relaxing visit with old friends. Test your outdoor sound system while you are at it.


  1. Upgrade your beverage service: Keep your guests cool and refreshed with a well-equipped beverage station. Consider investing in a more spacious cooler, outdoor refrigerator, or bins that can keep drinks chilled throughout the evening. For added flair, explore the option of a frozen drink machine, perfect for whipping up delicious cocktails or mocktails on hot summer days. Stock your pantry with drinks, mixers, and bar staples.


  1. Illuminate your spaces: Lighting plays a crucial role in setting the mood for any gathering. Illuminate both indoor and outdoor areas with a combination of ambient, task, and accent lighting. From string lights and lanterns to landscape lighting, candles, or LED fixtures, strategically placed lighting enhances safety and creates a welcoming atmosphere for your guests. 


  1. Keep pests at bay: Remember that summer can also mean bugs and mosquitoes. Wasp traps, citronella candles or torches, or non-toxic repellants should be deployed early and as necessary to keep your entertaining areas free of pests.


Stay Ahead of the Game


Summer is coming; before you know it, it will be upon us. Hooray! But don’t just spend your time waiting for the temperature to rise. Use this time to get yourself and your home ready for summer entertaining. Your early preparation will make these events even more enjoyable by relieving you of unnecessary stress and last-minute work. 


North Idaho offers many opportunities for enjoyment and recreation, but inviting others to your home for a summer party is one of the staples of summer fun, and creating the right outdoor environment for a good time will elevate your experience.

If building a custom home with outdoor entertaining spaces is part of your dream, Aspen Homes can help. If you are seeking a custom home builder in North Idaho, we invite you to consult us. Our homes seamlessly blend indoor and outdoor living, providing the perfect backdrop for hosting unforgettable events. Contact Aspen Homes today and begin creating lasting summer memories in picturesque North Idaho.

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