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Home / Trends & Styles / How to Plan the Perfect Casual Summer Soiree
Summer is here and the livin’ is easy! While there are so many things that I love about summer, the longer, lazy nights outside are my absolute favorite. As the heat fades into the hazy sunset and the crickets take over, I can just take a deep breath and feel summertime deep in my soul. And to soak in all the summer evenings, my family and I love hosting the perfect casual summer soiree with family and friends in our home.
To welcome my in-laws back home to Georgia from a dream summer vacation out west, we decided to host a casual summer supper so that we could exchange stories and browse photos together from the trip. Plus, my daughters, Caroline (7) and Charlotte (4), missed Mimi and Pop! The soiree would begin in the kitchen for conversation and final food prep, and then we’d all slowly spill onto the back porch for dinner on the patio table.
My rule of thumb when pulling together anything summer-related is to keep it easy and simple so that as the host, I can also enjoy the night. Summer food should be fresh, uncomplicated, and seasonal since we have such a short time each year to enjoy grilled meats and the freshest produce.  The homegrown vegetables are turning ripe in our backyard (yay!), and this means grilling season is in full effect in our home.
So, here is our simple Summer Soiree Menu:
  • “Welcome Home” Peach Pineapple Lemonade
  • Dry Rub Grilled Chicken
  • Grilled Corn on the Cob
  • Grilled Squash and Zucchini
  • Baked Potatoes
  • Strawberry Short Cake
While I love to cook, I’m very much a home chef, so nothing here should be too intimidating. Pep Talk: If I can do it, you can do it!
The festive drink set the tone for the soiree, and I had cold mason jars filled as our guests arrived.  The kids loved it, too! Here is the recipe so that you and your family can enjoy this sweet summertime drink.

To give corn on the cob a little summer heat, after shucking the corn, I cover it in butter, salt, pepper, and sprinkle Cayenne Pepper before wrapping it in foil and putting it on the grill. It’s delicious and always a crowd pleaser! And I always keep dessert really easy because I don’t believe in serving heavy foods in the summer. An angel food cake with whipped cream and strawberries was the ideal sweet ending to our evening.
When entertaining during the summer, the flow of the party usually is a constant transition from indoors to outdoors. Guests walk back and forth from the kitchen to the grill, using the restroom, playing games outside, grabbing extra napkins inside, and more. This night for us was no different as our guests enjoyed both the indoor and outdoor spaces. But the revolving door in the summer can be tough on our floors.
To protect your floors during summer entertaining, Twenty & Oak recommends the following:
  • Ask guests to remove their shoes when possible
  • Ask guests to not walk on your hardwood floors with wet bathing suits, towels, or feet
  • Keep scatter rugs at key doorways
  • Clean up spills with approved cleaning solutions as soon as you notice
For the ultimate high-performing floors that are made to withstand any summer soiree, Twenty & Oak offers a wide variety of stylish waterproof floors. With visuals ranging from distressed hardwood to ceramic tile, waterproof floors will not buckle, swell, or warp when exposed to water spills brought on by summer pool parties, water balloon fights, and, well, life. My recent favorite is Tidewater by Palmetto Road. Swoon!
How do you plan to celebrate summer? We can’t wait to see the beautiful summer soirees you plan in your home! Please share your ideas, recipes, and photos with us on Instagram
Mollie Surratt

Mollie is usually speeding in with an oversized Louis Vuitton bag full of pull ups, pink lip gloss and paint swatches—with a latte in hand.  She’s got a great eye for interiors that translates to, well, real life. Born and raised in Atlanta, Mollie grew up in her family’s couture bridal business. Today, her family’s business, bridals by lori, is the stage of the hit TLC reality show Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta.  

Mollie spent 12-years working in the flooring industry, but left the corporate world to begin her dream, Mollie Surratt Marketing & Interiors.  Her unique perspective as a busy professional mama of two girls is eclectic, considerate and sophisticated- with a huge dash of fun and humor in the mix.

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