I Used Paper Napkins!

We are family! And family for sure doesn’t care if we use paper or cloth napkins!

Our out-of-town cousins were here from St. Louis and we threw a family BBQ. In St. Louis style this family knows how to pull out the stops for us when we visit their town. They are the essence of hospitality. So our family rallied together to create an evening we wouldn’t forget here in Oregon.

When setting the table (12 adults and 8 kids), I decided – in the 100-degree heat – to do it quickly. Paper napkins were handy – and they’d just have to do! The kids sat at the picnic table, and the adults at another table with a more formal setting.

Once again, our dinner was not about impressing. It was about celebrating the fact that the last time we had all been together was 10 years ago!

Our dinner consisted of delicious appetizers of homemade salsa and chips, and vegetable pizza and fresh celery sticks from our garden. Then our main course was BBQ chicken breasts and thighs, yummy scalloped potatoes, strawberry salad, fruit kabobs and dip, and baguette bread with garlic butter. (Recipes to follow – next post.)

What could top it off better than Texas sheet cake, ice cream and strawberries?

Reminiscing & Laughter.


Sisterly love.

Cousins reconnecting.

Music, torches, candles.



Tickling the ivory.

Chubby babies.

Cooling off.

Little boy energy.

Yes, we are family – and even though we have miles between us, we still have a bond that cannot be separated.

Thank you Scott, Rebecca, Andrew and Audrey – for pursuing our family, keeping in touch, visiting us and for awesome memories!

Oh, and do you think when they arrive home from their vacation that they will remember I used paper napkins?

I don’t think so!

How about you – do you find it okay to use paper napkins?

(Paper napkins from Target’s clearance aisle. I usually like to use “cloth” because they are more “eco-friendly,” especially if line-dried. Upcoming post: RECIPES from this dinner party!)

37 comments on “I Used Paper Napkins!”

  1. I’ve tried really hard to stop using paper napkins. Like another poster, I even save napkins from fast food restaurants and use them when needed in my car or even at home. I have been collecting random cloth napkins for years in “my colors”, from Thrift stores, gift stores and even the Crate and Barrel outlet I used to live by. My husband rarely uses a napkin (don’t ask me how or why). So, I decided since I’m the only one at home that uses one, I’m using cloth. My kids are gone for the most part. I do buy paper for large groups, though. Great post and good question.
    Karen B.

  2. Sandy,

    I think that it’s totally a-okay to use paper napkins! Besides, I guarantee that I’ll a.) spill on myself 25 times (25,000 to be more realistic…) and totally saturate the cloth napkins, and b.) feel horrible that you then have such a load to wash. :o)

    Your menu sounds divine (we love veggie pizza!) and the joy radianting from the beautiful faces of your family is just contagious!

    Oh yeah, and the chubby baby pic? Does it ever get any better than that? :o)

    Have a beautiful 4th of July with your family, mama!

  3. The only reason they MIGHT remember is because you’ve recorded it here for all eternity!! Looks like a wonderful time ~ I love your talent for photography! Or Paul’s, whoever it was behind the shutter! These shots do such a great job of capturing not only events, but they really put the viewer in the midst of the emotions as well.

    Oh, and the menu sounds AWESOME!! My mouth is watering!

  4. How awesome and fun looking! I think they make so many beautiful paper products now.

  5. I love pretty paper napkins. They make great gifts too. Just found your site yesterday, a friend sent me here. Love your pictures, so alive and warm!

  6. I prefer cloth, but occasionally it’s fun to dress up the table with some kind of funky paper napkins that I find somewhere (you know, the kind that you would never buy in cloth!)

  7. We use them alot. I’m getting ready for tomorrow’s celebration and already have purchased them…red and blue…paper napkins. It looks as if you had a great time…

  8. This was a really good post! I use paper napkins all the time when entertaining at home but have had a harder time “getting over” using paper napkins and disposable plates/cups at my wedding. I mean yes, it’s a very important event but that important event can have crystal and silver and have 50 people or it can have paper and everyone we love can come! What’s important? Thanks for the reminder. Your posts are so great! kelly

  9. I am such a sucker for clearance paper napkins… especially if they have funky, fun colors.
    Last summer when IKEA was clearancing out all their fun napkins and paper goods along with the matching vinyl table cloths, I really stocked up!!! They were literally a quarter for each item!
    So I keep em all in my picnic baskets, ready for our weekly Home Group and dinner parties.
    Looking forward to the recipes Sandy!

  10. When I entertain, I use cloth napkins unless we’re eating outside, when I use paper. For everyday with the family, I’m lucky if I even get a napkin on the table. Do paper towels count? As my oldest brother used to say, “I don’t need a napkin. I’m wearing jeans.”

  11. I am all for paper napkins! In fact, I’ve been known with really close friends to use paper towels in a bind.

    Love the family pictures! As always, you capture so much through the photos.

  12. Paper is definitely okay, especially outdoors! And they were so pretty. Looks like a really fun party. I look forward to the recipes!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *