6 Ways To Have Memorable Family Gatherings Without Owning Lots of Stuff


Having our family and friends around our dining table for holidays or on the weekends is one of life’s great pleasures. Everyone loves coming to the Nana’s Sunday turkey lunch or for grandma’s special holiday feast. We love it when our home is a hub that attracts the whole family, neighbors, old girlfriends, school friends or book club pals.

But, that means keeping the household that can support large groups of people: eight six-people china sets, 48 sets of cutlery, four large platters, 48 wine glasses, 48 water glasses, endless number of vases, cups, saucers, napkins.

As a result, your attic is full of stuff, your closets are bursting at seams, and you spend hours cleaning things you almost never use. You live 360 days of the year in certain way you do not like in order to have enough stuff for those wonderful 5 days when the kids or friends come and you have great time together. It does not make any sense.

So, why do it? Declutter your house, your life and your future. Live the life you want. You can still have all those great family gatherings, just in a bit different way. After all, you are ready for new and different.

1. Everything can be rented

Don’t stop making family parties just before you got rid of all the party stuff. There are places that rent inexpensive but attractive restaurant supplies. You can rent as many dishes you need for the party, and when you are done, send it all back.

And when you think how much money you could make selling grandma Rose’s antique china, you would have enough money to rent stuff for years.

2. Borrow from the neighbors

You can borrow stuff from your neighbors and friends who did not get the decluttering bug yet.

3. Paper plates and cups are recyclable

There are very good quality recyclable paper plates and cups you can get for your large parties. They are often even decorated for the season.

4. Organize a picnic

Instead of having a big feast around your dining table, invite the family and friends to your favorite park. Collect colorful blankets and large baskets from friends and load them with their favorite goodies. Some you can make, like sandwiches, but feel free to buy pastries and cakes if you do not feel for making them.

5. Encourage pot luck parties

Tell your friends and family that you would like everyone to bring something for the party instead of expecting you to do it all. They might grumble for a while, but will eventually enjoy it.

6. Book a mansion, boat or park

For very special occasions, rent a boat, a museum, a zoo, aquarium or a fancy local mansion for a day and have grand catered or potluck party. It is much more affordable than you think. And again, after you sell the grand monster of the family house you do not enjoy any more, you will have not only the money but also energy to plan fun parties.

What do you do to have great family gatherings without owning lots of stuff?

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