Frugal Entertaining

Our household has been graced with a very old friend and her relatively new husband (and even newer son) this week...I know you wondered why it was so quiet here! And, since the financial situation hasn't made an improvement, we've had to get creative with entertaining our guests. Fortunately for us, Melissa is a frugalista herself, and we've spent alot of time comparing notes and absorbing information. And she's hip to the cash flow dilemma, so we've made it a point to do more for less. Like what, you say? I thought you'd never ask!!

Chatting over coffee (or your favorite beverage, as long as we're not talking a bottle of Black Label....cha-ching!). Like I said above, I've learned alot from this visit. She's spent some time teaching me about my computer, we've had some laughs about how cheap we can get, and our hubbies and kiddos have had important male bonding time. Cost? Practically free!

Parks. We've been so blessed to have had great weather this past week. And our small town is known for it's abundance of parks. So we've spent alot of time playing with the kids, and playing ourselves. Bringing along your own lunch makes it seem "a step above" the normal park visit, and it really transforms into an enjoyable afternoon. Kiddos sleep better at night, too (at least, mine does).

Cooking together. Melissa's husband, Nate, is a fellow foodie, and it's been so interesting to watch how he "rolls" in the kitchen. I'm telling you, I got a lesson on brining chicken legs...with sugar! He's stretched my mind into some different directions, and completely inspired me to experiment a little myself. And yes, the chicken legs were divine.

Bike riding at dusk. It seems our M.O. to get the kids, both large and small, on wheels as the day winds down. Andrew, Nate, and Yasar on bikes, Lucian (their baby) on a push-car, me and Melissa on the legs God gave us. And it's been just so much fun! Even the mosquitos appear to cooperate and leave us alone. :)

You know, it's always been my philosophy that, when you have guests, you spoil them rotten and disregard the expense (until the Visa bill comes in). But it's a new dawn, a new day, and I feel good! Seriously, we've not spent a heap of money, had a great time, and I don't have that buyer's remorse to look forward to the minute our guests head off into the sunset (what is it with me and the sun today?). Lesson learned! And we had a fantastic time learning it!

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