This week has been all about friendship.

I know, I hope that every week is about friendship. And it is. But for some reason, maybe the combination of one of my best friends being back in town for a short time, and the shower we threw for another wonderful friend, this week has felt drenched in friendship. Which is a lovely lovely feeling. There have been coffees and brunches and afternoon teas and evening dinners (double date sushi tonight – yey!) and it is just wonderful.

More and more I am realising that friendship needs to be spontaneous. It can be hard with busy schedules to plan things but sometimes you realise, hmm, I have no lunch plans today and that is the moment to call your friend and say “let’s grab a baguette and walk around the park kicking leaves”.

And I’m more and more about simple entertaining. Forget the elaborate table decorations (although I love the pretty!) and just be together. So today celebrating friendship is my favourite… and here are a few inspirations I’ve gathered from around the web of how to do just that:

1) Breakfast dates. My new favourite time to meet friends is for breakfast. No, I’m not really a morning person, but even friends who work full time can do a quick morning coffee and croissant before work starts. And somehow the idea of half hour quality chat with someone I like gets me out of bed better than anything else.

Casey, guestblogging at IartU, came up with “breakfast on the go”, perfect for morning rendezvous!

I can almost guarantee you that if you promise pancakes at 8am tomorrow, half a dozen friends will turn up on your doorstep on time, despite the early hour. Photo from Bump Smitten.

2) Lunchtime Picnic. I am also strongly of the opinion that picnics should not just resigned to summer. The parks are stunning at the moment in all their autumn glory, and should be enjoyed at every opportunity! Pack a thermos of hot coffee or soup, wrap up warm and enjoy getting out of the office/house and letting the wind blow away those cobwebs!

Picture source unknown, via Cindy 

3) Afternoon Tea. My friend Ellie is the biggest advocate for afternoon teas that I know, and I am firmly in her camp. It is one of the things I miss most about the UK. Whether you do it in refined ladylike style with delicate china, or instead with big mugs of tea and generously proportioned slices of cake, afternoon tea is the perfect excuse for friends time.

This cafe in London does traditional afternoon tea, or “men’s afternoon tea” with beer, pork pies and scotch eggs. Splendid! By Zoe.

Take the kids with you! Kelle found this adorable tea shop in Florida and she and her girls dressed up in hats and gloves for their afternoon tea session. I love it!

4) Wine and cheese evenings. Yes, it sounds a bit snobby, but really there is nothing easier or more relaxing than a wine and cheese evening. Just buy a few fancy-looking bottles from the supermarket and some interesting looking cheeses from the cheesemonger (if you’re lucky enough to have one down the road like us) and, bobs your uncle, the party is ready! It doesn’t harm at all that the wine will radically help in the “relaxing” part ;)

This birthday party looks bliss. Cheese, crackers, candlelight and cake. What more could you want?! From Monkey in LA‘s blog.

Ok, so this is a “Dark & Stormy” cocktails and cheese night, but the concept is the same, just with spirits rather than wine, which helps with the relaxing even more! Photos by The Blue Hour via A Subtle Revelry.

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