Do you ever have ideas and think “I wish someone would do that!” only to realize you are the person that is supposed to take it on? That is how I felt about having a weekly Sunday lunch tradition. When I was in college I spent my Sunday afternoons with a family that hosted some of us college kids to share a delicious meal and talk over a book we read together.
It has been about four years since that time in my life and I think of it often. It was one of those things you could never recreate because it was so special, but you could still learn valuable lessons from and adapt to the new season you’re in. I pitched the idea to Jordan of opening our home weekly to build relationships with old friends and cultivate new friendships over a simple meal. He was immediately in!
The idea is simple: we have a standing open invite for friends to join us for a meal on Sundays. I usually double or triple a large recipe and make sure there is plenty of disposable dishes available. I ask friends to bring drinks, a side item or dessert to make sure there is plenty for everyone. Some weeks our house is packed, sometimes it is a more intimate group…it always seems to work out just how it needs to. We keep it laid back, I’ve thrown out the pressure of being a super host or having the most amazing meal prepared. The most important thing to us is to keep things relaxed and have a space where people can gather.
Before moving forward on this tradition I had two large fears holding me back. First, I was fearful of cooking for a group of people. I do not label myself as a cook, I follow the directions and don’t really know what foods will go well together so I don’t branch out. After asking some friends for fool-proof recipes that serve a crowd, I was a little more confident. I also decided to take the pressure off to be the best cook or host – the food was just an excuse for people to gather.
Second, I was fearful of the size of our home. We have a kitchen, dining and living room that open up to one another which makes hosting nice but overall, the space is small. Having an open-invite as well as a come and go as you please policy has definitely helped with this. But with the warmer weather coming, I had mentioned to Jordan I wanted an outdoor dining table to help with Sunday lunch hosting.
I had found Article, a modern furniture brand, a few years ago because of their beautiful sofa collection. After spending time on their website I was pleased to know their prices were lower because they sell directly to you instead of retailers, showrooms and salespeople getting involved. I referred back to Article’s website after deciding we were ready for an outdoor dining area. Jordan and I quickly found what we were looking for.
We both loved the Teaka dining table and chairs so much it was a no-brainer to order it immediately. Once we received it, I was blown away by the design and quality of both the table and chairs. I feel like every detail was thought out – even the assembly was a breeze.
Now having a large, open space with seating I’m so excited for this warmer weather to stick around so our Sunday tradition can continue. If you have hesitations about hosting something like this, let me ease your mind a little bit. Any time I mention to a friend about being afraid to cook for people, or not hosting because of the size of our space they look at me puzzled like “that never even crossed my mind!” I think we tend to make things a bigger deal in our head which makes us miss out on so many great opportunities.
We’ve met so many wonderful friends through this tradition and I am so thankful we now have a space and beautiful table and chairs to entertain with!
Photography by Tiffany Tolbert.
Product for this post was provided by Article. A brand I love and know you will too!