throw a great pool party

by Kristina Sloggett

in appetizers, cocktails, dachshund, grilling, summertime

Summertime is upon us, and summertime means pool parties.

The house we just moved from had a pool, and we had many a fun summer there. We basically lived in our back yard for three months. Jason did a great job of keeping the pH levels perfect and the pool sparkly blue. I did a great job of blending margaritas, inviting people over, and keeping air in Basil’s floaty cactus.

From years of my pool party past, I bring you the Guide To The Ultimate Pool Party.

Invite Your Friends.

Friends love the house with a pool. Especially on really hot days… it’s surprising how fast they are able to show up to an impromptu invite, almost as if they were already driving over…

Have extra towels handy for your guests.

Stack them by doors, in case people need to dry off before entering the house. Towels close to the pool (but not too close they get wet) are a good idea also.

Designate food and drink area, pool and play area, sitting and relaxing area.

Your guests will want a place to sit or lay in the sun once they get out of the pool:

Invest in plastic plates and drinkware, keeping glass away from the pool.

this margarita was dachshund – supervised.

Plan games and have pool accessories / toys available.

Basil is surprisingly good at the ring toss.

Provide the ultimate in pool party food and drink:

grilled pineapple bacon sandwiches


seven layer dip with noocho cheese


reuben rolls with thousand island dip


spicy stuffed sweet peppers


lightened up Piña Coladas


strawberry habanero margaritas


My advice with hosting any party – prepare as much as you can ahead of time, make a timeline so you have stress free planning, and have decor double as useful – pinatas, beach balls, pool toys…

Most of all, remember to relax, enjoy the sun, and have fun!


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{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

1 katie June 19, 2012 at 5:22 am

I want to come to YOUR pool party!!!

Basil is so cute, haha! Little weiner swimmer 😉

Happy Tuesday love! Hope all is well! <3


2 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:46 am

little weiner swimmer – yep! he really likes the pool, as long as we are in it with him 😀

happy Tuesday to you, my dear! things are GOOD here, hope they are there too – happy anniversary and have THE BEST vacation! XXO


3 Heather (Where's the Beach) June 19, 2012 at 5:22 am

Love seeing pics of him in the pool. Mine hate the pool! Love your tips too. We really enjoy having pool parties. It’s always fun to share your pool with friends.


4 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:44 am

I know, we really had fun with that pool those last several years. we had some friends that were unapologetic about it, inviting themselves over when the temps got over 90+… good thing we liked them 😉 I was not joking when I said they would arrive VERY fast… we’d decide at the last minute to have people over, I’d send Jason to the store for some things to grill, and our friends would show up before he returned. I’d say, you were already driving over here, right? every time… 😉


5 Abby June 19, 2012 at 5:24 am

That picture of Basil on the raft absolutely made my morning, which is something I totally needed.

I also need more friends with pools…and that can make delicious vegan snacks 😉


6 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:42 am

Basil is very happy to have made your morning. and I know – those raft photos get me every time, just so dang cute. I have a feeling we will miss that pool this year… hmm, the house is still vacant, perhaps we can go over there and use it!? 😉


7 Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) June 19, 2012 at 6:00 am

Why can’t we live closer together? It’s pretty clear that I would LOVE to come to any of your parties!


8 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:40 am

oh Sarena I agree, for SO many reasons (and I’d love to have you + the boys at any party!). guess what class is all about today? DESSERTS. I *SO* wish you were taking this with me.


9 Erin @ A Girl & Her Mutt June 19, 2012 at 6:09 am

Basil! He is a ham. I love that he loves the water so much. Too cute!


10 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:39 am

Basil really is a ham. well, he doesn’t like the camera, so you have to act fast to catch that ‘natural ham’ 😉


11 Caralyn @ glutenfreehappytummy June 19, 2012 at 6:31 am

oh my gosh this is quite possibly THE CUTEST post i’ve seen in a long time! your dog is absolutely adorable!! and that food looks incredible too — those burgers!! ooo weeee!


12 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:38 am

thank you – I smile big each time I look at it, and it was a fun one to put together. Basil is such fun, and I love that he takes to water pretty well (as long as we are in there with him). XXO!


13 Krystina June 19, 2012 at 6:59 am

Basil is the cuuuuutest!


14 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:37 am

yeee, I know!! 😀 (and he says thank you, wag wag wag…)


15 jobo June 19, 2012 at 7:43 am

This makes me miss having a pool like whoa!!! I love your selections for pool party eats, so yum!


16 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:36 am

I know, I have a feeling we will miss that pool this summer. our new place has a hot tub, maybe we just keep it cool for the summer? and we will still have plenty of grilling parties… not really hot tub parties, Jason and I can only think of the Saturday Night Live skits and then have to say “we are not hot tub people” 😀


17 Jess June 19, 2012 at 7:49 am

Um hi, I’m crashing your next pool party, you don’t mind do you? PS I love Basil, cutest pup ever.


18 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:34 am

I would never mind that – PLEASE come on over! 😀 I know – cutest pup ever indeed! (B says thank yoooouuuuuuu) XXO


19 Amanda June 19, 2012 at 7:55 am

The pictures of Basil on the floaty cactus are too freaking cute! I can’t even handle it.


20 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:33 am

I know, Amanda, I can hardly stand it either. he is just the cutest thing when he gets in the pool!


21 Christina June 19, 2012 at 9:02 am

OMG I saw Basil on a floaty and had to immediately skip down to comment! How incredibly adorable!! My dog Sushi won’t go near a floaty, she’s scared of everything lol.

Ok I’ll go read the rest of your post now lol


22 Christina June 19, 2012 at 9:04 am

I still have yet to make those Rueben rolls, I need to get on that!


23 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 9:41 am

you do! they are so SO good… I’m making them again Friday! :)


24 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 9:42 am

hee, that is too funny. isn’t he SWEET? he likes the pool as long as we are in it with him.


25 Allie June 19, 2012 at 9:22 am

So much Basil! HOW is he so adorable? And if I had a pool…well, I’d like to say I’d throw a good pool party, but I’d probably be a lazy pool owner and be too embarrassed to invite people over to my green-ish leaf-filled pool ;D


26 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 9:41 am

haa! even the green is easy to get rid of… I know this first hand 😉 and Basil says THANK YOU ALLIE. isn’t he just SO dang cute?!?


27 Lindsay @ Lindsay's List June 19, 2012 at 11:23 am

that’s it. i’m comin’ over!


28 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 9:01 pm

yay – come on over!


29 Tommy June 19, 2012 at 2:30 pm

that doggie of yours is so stinkin cute.


30 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:59 pm

he knows.


31 Nancy Rose Eisman June 19, 2012 at 8:56 pm

Best Spabettie blogpost ever!


32 spabettie June 19, 2012 at 8:58 pm

hee! thank you Nancy Rose! :)


33 Wendy June 20, 2012 at 7:39 am

I cannot tell you how much these pictures of Basil made me smile! When I was growing up we had a red miniature dachshund that looked exactly like Basil. (Her name was Cinnamon) She LOVED to sit at the end of my floaty chair. We spent many a summer day floating in our pool. I hadn’t thought about that in years. Thanks for bringing back such happy memories. :) And I must try your Reuben rolls!


34 Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit June 20, 2012 at 8:09 am

Oh my gosh… basil on the dingy? Just made my day. Seriously.


35 janetha [meals & moves] June 20, 2012 at 11:36 am



36 Liz (Little Bitty Bakes) June 22, 2012 at 7:11 pm

Remembering to relax and have fun sounds like it’s the most important! :) Now I really want to go to a pool party… can I come out to Oregon? 😉


37 Marya August 25, 2012 at 4:19 pm

Ha! Love the Basil pics! We have a Jack Russell Terrier named Hazel that loves to windsurf with Baron, my husband. She has a little life vest and goes nuts if she’s not allowed to climb on the board and ride along. He put a non-skid surface down there so she doesn’t slip off. Gotta love dogs!


38 spabettie August 27, 2012 at 2:45 pm

aaw, Hazel sounds like an adventurer for sure – I love that! don’t know if Basil would surf, but we haven’t tried, so… 😉


39 Corrin April 27, 2013 at 10:17 am

oh my gosh. adorable. my mom’s dachshund would have a pool party every day if you let him. my dachshund barely tolerates baths.


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