For starters, consider getting a Rubbermaid bin to keep your summer party supplies in. During the summer, bring the bin out of storage for easy access in your kitchen or an easily-accessible closet. The rest of the year, you can store the bin in a closet, basement, or attic.
So, what belongs in that bin?
Cocktail umbrellas are ubiquitous in the summer, but they can make any beverage feel like a tropical escape.
Summer-themed napkins are another easy staple to keep on hand. They can be found for a dollar or two at shops like the Dollar Tree and the Christmas Tree Shops.
If you're going to entertain outdoors, consider keeping plastic cups on hand. Not only are they perfect for everything from punch to beer to ice cream floats, but you won't have to worry about them breaking if they get dropped or knocked over.
Reusable melamine "paper" plates are one of 15-Minute Party Planner's favorite summer party staples. These adorable plates look like disposable paper plates, but are reusable, dishwasher safe, and virtually unbreakable. You'll add an immediate touch of whimsy with these plates or their checkered counterparts.
You can also keep a number of summertime items in your pantry and fridge. Grab a few of these on your next shopping trip, and you'll be ready for spontaneous summer entertaining.
Summery drink mixers like instant lemonade, Margaritas, and Daiquiris are perfect for warm weather entertaining. Mixers, along with light, refreshing wines and beers will ensure that you're stocked for easy entertaining.
Ice. You can, of course, add ice to any drink to make it cold, but you can also use ice to stock coolers for outdoor entertaining or to mix up slushy frozen drinks.
Summer is the perfect time for snacking, so any number of crackers, chips, or vegetables served alongside salsa or dip will work with unexpected company. When you see your favorite brands on sale, pick up an extra box of crackers to stock your pantry without much effort.
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- The 15-Minute Party Planner's pantry and 'fridge: What to keep on hand for easy entertaining
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