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5 quick last minute tips to get ready for summer entertaining

A busy weekend on the agenda coming up.
Including a birthday celebration, painting, video work, breakfast with a sweet friend
and photography.

Summer always seems like it is should be a time during the year when you slow down a bit and savor those afternoon naps and lazy sleeping in late mornings.
 And when you have a bit more free time to catch up on some of those things on the to-do list. 
But it also seems that the more they should slow down- the schedules get busy and fill up.

And with today being Friday- and guests arriving tomorrow- and a house full of projects happening- I am SO Not polished and looking top notch for entertaining. 
(And yes, I am talking about the house AND me... haha. )

So today it is all about 5 super fast last minute tips for cleaning, styling and getting your house gussied up for summer guests.  
Because if you are like me... you need all the help you can get.

#1. A quick mop

Our house is on several acres. And with that acreage comes dirt and pea gravel dust on the floors. And add in the sawdust flying everywhere- and I feel like the floors never look clean and... it makes me crazy.

I do a good mopping the day before any get together-arrive- and then the morning of- another quick sweep and mop again. It makes a difference in how the house feels- even if there is bit of sawdust on the mantel that you missed.

#2. Counters 

Wipe them down. And don't forget the faucets. And clear off any clutter like that coffee maker or everyday bits.  It is a simple super quick and easy thing to do - but it makes the whole kitchen feel fresh. 

#3. Fresh Flowers

You knew it had to be one of the things right? Fresh flowers makes everything feel fresh and pretty. Today I am running to the market to grab a few nibbles for tomorrow- and while there I am grabbing a few bunches of seasonal blooms. Some stock for the kitchen, fresh greens for the dining room and maybe a few roses for the bathroom and bedroom counters. 

Something else that you can do in a pinch is to bring some of those potted plants indoors. I love foxgloves and geranium or petunias in the house. Simple and easy.

#4. Linen spray 

A few spritzes of a natural based spray on the sofa, the bed linens or towels makes such a difference. My favorites are lemon or lavender scents. They add a soft subtle fragrance that you smell when you sit on the sofa or walk into a small space like a bathroom- but they are not overwhelming like a room spray or something that plugs in. 

#5. Turn the lights on

Have you ever noticed how when you walk through an open house that all the lights are on? The energy saver in me wants to turn them off- but the ambiance loving girl puts them on. Lighting is so important in how a room or setting feels.  So something I do as I straighten my hair and touch up makeup - is run around and flip those lights on in the main areas of the house- and the outdoor rooms.

#6. For the road

Remember that even if the floor is not perfect, the counters are not spotless, the market didn't have any pretty blooms and you look a little bedraggled after all the cooking and cleaning and running around...the most important thing about a get together is the people and the time you spend together.
I had a friend who once said something that stuck with the perfectionist in me that I always think of when I start to feel a little crazy running around before a get together.

I had just given birth to my daughter, had 2 young boys running around like maniacs
 and was quite frankly exhausted.  
I remember I was sitting on the living room floor nursing my daughter  in a bit of a daze while the boys played with the 85th basket of toys they had dumped out- 
when there was a knock at the door.
 It was my friend and her teenage daughter and when she came in, honestly,
 I was embarrassed that there were dishes in the sink, toys everywhere underfoot, 
there were no pretty lights on, fresh scents in the living room or anything else to say 'Welcome'.
And she said
 ' I didn't come to visit your house- I came to visit you.'

So relax and let some of the crazy go and just enjoy your company.

 Have a beautiful Friday everyone.


  1. What a gorgeous setting...your photographs never cease to take the viewer on a beautiful journey! So sublime. Have a lovely weekend, Happy Birthday.

  2. Gorgeous Courtney! As usual:) Have a fantastic weekend!

  3. Wonderful post! Have a great weekend Courtney!

  4. Great Tips and your friend gave you a great piece of advice!!!

  5. I had to smile at your friend's comment....when my parents were entertaining, which meant friends with their children coming over for a BBQ....I was the one that was running around picking up after my siblings before company came, making sure things were neatly in their place, and my my mom always say to me, that "they are not coming over to see our house, they are coming over to see us! .... That was still hard for me to accept! :) Have a great weekend with your friends and family!

  6. When the blues are starting to settle in and the seratonin doesn't kick in...I find my quiet spot and space to revive...and that is by going to your page and dreaming big. It always seems to work!