Every year I throw a bring your own BBQ for the my department (plus partners). I do a bring a steak, bring a bottle just because that way I don't stress about who is going to turn up. If they do we have food, and if they don't we are not wasting anything.
So yesterday was spent playing with the new computer, cleaning the house and garden, taking a Volvo full of stuff to the local tip and putting up a couple of party tents in case it rained.
I've thrown this BBQ for the last 5 years and it has rained every single year. This year was no exception - it came down in torrents (OK not New York / New Jersey torrents, but a lot!) But everyone seemed to have a good time, we ate, drank and were merry. I managed to keep track of what I was drinking so I had much less than I have in the past. I didn't eat too much meat either, I was actually a little proud of myself for not going all out. Until the cup cakes someone brought for dessert came out. I had 1 chocolate, 1 lemon, 1 blueberry and then another chocolate. And then felt really guilty!
We got the garden fire out once the rain stopped a little and it started to get dark got that going to keep everyone warm.
As we are all starting to get a little older people start leaving earlier - in the first couple of years people stayed until 2ish, yesterday most people were gone by midnight, and the last left at 1ish. A friend of Mrs Stace was staying with us, rather than catching a train home, and the three of us chatted away until nearly 2. I knew when we went to bed that it was too late and I was going to regret it, and indeed I do! I'm exhausted! I feel like I have lungfuls of smoke from the fire, and that I need to go back to bed!
Thankfully everything was left quite clean outside, and we can't dismantle the tents until they dry (June next year?) we just have the Kitchen to sort out. Also not really that much of a problem, I just have to get off the sofa to do it...
I guess I had better do that now, my parents-in-law are coming for a drink in half an hour. I hope that I can stay awake whilst they are here!