Every year, I host an outdoor summer soiree for my close friends and my Tea Emporium team. And so, his past Saturday I hosted yet another summer garden party at my house and it was absolutely delightful. An evening of chatter and laughs ensued, accompanied by drinks, homemade food and special comedy performances by my amazing puppy, Oscar.

I have put out some appetizers to start – some olives, pita and hummus dip, a delicious batch of meatballs, sandwiches, fruit, scones and some lovely tiny tea pastries. I also made a cold, creamy, cucumber soup that was such a refreshing addition to the hot day and has remained a favorite of mine for the past few years! A few glasses of wine in and the dinner was served. I prepared salads, sauces and sides to go along with falafels, meat skewers and pitas. Each year, I make a buffet styled table and let the guests choose what they prefer and create their own dishes. Needless to say, the dinner was delicious! For desert, I served a nut and dates confection with some dried fruits and grapes to complement the taste.

Later in the evening, we moved inside to avoid mosquito biting and of course to cozy up and continue our chatter. The time flew by very quickly, I barely noticed the wine bottles slowly emptying and the folks slowly getting sleepy after a good meal. I love this occasion to get together because there is nothing better than being surrounded by family and friends. I love having company over, cooking for them and making them feel comfortable and relaxed. All of us rarely get any time to do this, to just enjoy food and drinks in a calm, relaxed environment and share a warm memory (until next year of course!) of this wonderful gathering.

Here are a few photos from the evening!

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