I’m a firm believer in entertaining made easy. Like, super easy. After recently relocating from Pennsylvania, I have a strong appreciation for the all-year-round beautiful weather that makes entertaining outside possible all the time. When you’re stuck inside from October (if winter comes early) until April or May (depending on all the rain you get) you learn to love those summer days no matter how hot it is outside. Lets breakdown outdoor entertaining into three categories; décor, backyard games, and food.



I have always wanted to be one of those Pinterest moms who can make anything she sees just by looking at it. Let’s face it though, I don’t always have the time or energy to sit down and complete projects. So, let’s just make home décor easy when entertaining outside. Two words … paper products. I’m telling you, this will be a game changer for you. I’m also one of those moms that will use Thanksgiving themed paper products during Christmas if I have any leftover. Lastly, go buy a beautiful bouquet of flowers and sit that on the patio table outside. Everyone will notice the flowers, not that you’re using paper products. 

Backyard Games

Backyard games are a must when you have a yard full of children running around. I recently went to a cookout and they had so many games set up I didn’t have to think twice about my kids getting bored and wanting to leave. If you want to save money, you can make your own games with stuff you already have around the house. For example, use old soda bottles as bowling pins and a ball you have laying around as a bowling ball. Set it up in the yard and boom, instant game. Check out some of my favorite backyard games below.

Water games: This can be easy and entertain for hours. Water balloons, water guns, blow up pools and sprinklers. 

Yard games: I had no idea cornhole was such a popular game until moving to Florida. It’s everywhere. You can make a DIY set relatively easy and cheap or refurbish a used set you find online. A few other favorite yard games of mine are horseshoes, badminton, and ladder ball.

Food and Beverage

Finally, my favorite topic. Food. I’ve noticed in Florida when someone has a cookout they go big. Not just burgers and hot dogs big. They go burgers, hot dogs, brisket and any other meat you can possibly think of. Every year, I attend a cookout that doesn’t do any of this. Instead, they do wings. They make their own sauces and fry up their wings outside. It is amazing and my absolute favorite day of the summer. If only they would share their secret recipe with me for the wing sauce. Make it as simple as possible. Instead of providing all the food, ask guests to bring a side dish to share with everyone. This alone alleviates some of the work for the host. Assuming it’s a hot day, water with fruit in it is refreshing, tastes good, and looks fun. Decorating the beverage with fruit is also nice little touch. I insist it makes my drink taste even better than it would without it. Lastly, dessert (insert drooling face). Anyone who knows me knows my addiction for s’mores. I’m willing to try anything s’more flavored but my favorite is a good ole fire roasted s’more. Not only are these easy, but they’re cheap, kid-friendly and you don’t have to worry about making something ahead of time. A major winner in my book.


So there you have it, friends. Your outdoor entertaining made easy. Now go pour yourself a drink, top it off with some fruit and start planning your own outdoor cookout. 



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Kristi Bricker
Kristi relocated to St. Augustine from Pennsylvania. She has been married for 15 years to her High School sweetheart, Andy. Together they have 3 kids, Eli (13), Liam (7) and Lacey (3). Kristi has a B.A. in Human Development and Family Studies and her Masters degree in Christian Counseling: Crisis Response and Trauma. She enjoys ALL the donuts and is a firm believer that cake should always be eaten for breakfast. She is a social butterfly and loves spending time with friends and family. She really loves baking and crafting and has recently found a love for running. She enjoys being the go-to friend when you’re having a bad day and needing to vent. Kristi also enjoys tasting different coffees at the local coffee shops, but the Kookaburra is her go-to.