The Cookout — Part 1

My mom always made planning a cookout look easy.  I now know that it was years of experience that made the entire process appear effortless.  She didn’t make a couple of phone-calls and then wait until everyone magically arrived on time, on a perfectly sunny day, with perfectly prepared salads and desserts.  It takes practice…planning… and maybe even a couple of flops along the way.

  And this Saturday, ladies and gents, is my first attempt at learning how it’s all done.

Already I have proven that the planning process can be a bit hectic.  In fact, I have called, sent Facebook messages, and texted my friends so many times I imagine that they’ll be sick of me by the time they actually see my face on Saturday.  Hard to believe, I know. But I think it’s getting there. 😉

There was – of course – the initial contact in which I sent the invitation to some friends that Nate and I haven’t seen in awhile.  It was very casual.  Just a little announcement that Nate and I wanted to catch up with the ‘gang’ and thought it’d be fun to do it over a BBQ.  I also mentioned that it would be great if everyone could bring a dessert or a salad.

Now my church always makes such an announcement when it has a function.  Just bring a dessert or a salad to share.  But when you’re talking hundreds of people, you’re bound to get a good variety.  When you’re talking about 15 people, you could end up with all salads.  Or worse, all of the same salads.

I suddenly had this image of everyone showing up with a potato salad. And this would be okay if I were hosting a Potato Famine BBQ, but I’m not. So it would really just be embarrassing… and maybe a bit frustrating to the couple of guys who don’t like mayonnaise. 

So I made the second round of calls, Facebook messages, and texts, asking everyone if they had a general idea as to what they would bring.  And it turns out that my friends all like making dessert.  So I had to contact everyone a third time to see who might be interested  in making a salad and suddenly I wondered if there would be enough desserts.  Ahh, the confusion.

At this point, I do now know that there will be two pasta salads, potato salad, hummus for veggies, and three desserts.  So I think we’ll be okay.

I decided to stop worrying about the food, because thinking about food this much has made me hungry.  So I found something else to worry about. Like the seating.

I realized that Nate and I own exactly six chairs.  And although most of my friends wouldn’t mind if they had to sit on the ground, I really couldn’t expect them to do that. So yeah, another message went out.  Except Nate sent this one.  I thought it might be nice for them to hear from him for a change.

Anyway, now that we’re only one day away from the BBQ, I’ve decided to just sit back and relax a bit.  We’re all friends, so we’ll make the best of it and have fun.  After all, it’s been awhile since we all got together, so this will be a really good time.  🙂   The food will be delicious, the sun is supposed to shine, and we’ve got some games to play.

Oh, wait!

 I just remembered. Some of my friends have kids now.  What do I have for kid’s toys and games? 

Oh no…

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6 Responses to The Cookout — Part 1

  1. myFOODevents says:

    This message is commical to me because I have been there and it is CrAzY and streesful, but in the end it is all about the company not the food or decoration. You are among friends 🙂

  2. Abby says:

    This is really funny, because I remember all the coordination that goes into food whenever my friends have a get together. It’s pretty hectic, making sure that everyone doesn’t bring chips. I’m sure it will be fun!

  3. lisaou11 says:

    Ugh, I hate coordinating for events and parties bc it CAN get so stressful. Glad you rolled with it!

  4. You’ll be great, the food will be great, and the company will be fun. Really, everything will come together perfectly in the end. Easier said on the outside looking in, I know, but really, it comes down to the company and just having fun. 😀

  5. jelillie says:

    Hope you all had a great time. Hosting a cook out sounds like a lot more fun than hosting a potato famine. Let’s never do that? 80)

  6. bradmhackett says:

    BBQ’s are always fun, when they are fun that is, but I am sure your’s was fantastic. By the way what ever happened to Part 2?

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