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One of the things that I've been most excited about now that we have a house is having more space to entertain guests! We've had the occasional dinner party or game night in the past, but the small area we lived in and our tiny table didn't allow for us to host people the way that I would have liked. Not only do we have a bigger table and more entertaining space now, we have a backyard to host barbecues and parties in during the summer and we couldn't be more excited! We have a few events already in the works, and as I plan for them, I've been thinking about all of the things we need to do to make sure that our friends and family feel at home and have a great time!
Clean Up a Bit
One thing I look forward to whenever we're planning to have people over is how clean the house gets. Joe and I plan a cleaning party, crank up the 90's pop station on Pandora and tackle everything that needs to be done around the house together. While I don't think many people would judge us too harshly if our house didn't look immaculate when they come to visit, having a clean house makes me feel better and it's always fun to show off what our home looks like when it's in tip top shape, especially with all of the work we've been putting into it lately.
Stock the Kitchen
I really like people to feel at home when they come over, and I always encourage them to help themselves to anything they want. Having drinks and snacks set out is always a good plan because there are only a few people who feel comfortable enough to help themselves to whatever looks good in our fridge and/or pantry. I like to have homemade goodies, grab and go snacks, and a few favorite drinks on hand so that we have something to offer to people when they're over.
Pile up the Blankets
Our house can get a little drafty sometimes, thanks to really old windows that need to be replaced. Not only that, but everyone seems to have a different comfort level when it comes to room temperature. I like to set out a pile of blankets in whichever room we'll be spending the most time so that those who need them know where to get them and they don't have to sit and get cold before deciding to say something.
Prepare the Bathrooms
There's nothing worse than going in to use the bathroom at someone's house only to find that they're out of toilet paper or soap and you have no idea where to find more. Before I have people over, I like to make sure the soap is full, have a few extra rolls of toilet paper placed where it is easy to find and fits in with the decor, and have a clean hand towel set out.
For Guests Spending the Night
Provide Little Comforts
Spending the night in someone else's home, no matter how well you know them, isn't quite as comfortable as spending the night in your own home. Setting your guests up with things like your WiFi password, snacks in their room, clean bath towels and wash clothes, etc. can make them feel more at ease and welcome in your home. These are just a few of the things that I think about when planning how we'll put together our future guest room.
Potentially Forgotten Necessities
I've started collecting travel size bottles of shampoo/conditioner, lotion, toothpaste, etc. and keep them in a jar in our guest bathroom. When we have people stay overnight, the jar will sit next to the sink with a cute note attached letting them know that they are free to take and use whatever they need from it. Joe's grandma had one of these sitting on her bathroom counter the last time we stayed with her and I was so grateful because I'd forgotten my body lotion and was able to use one of the travel sized ones that she had.
Comfortable Space of Their Own
We have the perfect little area in our basement to host guests. For the majority of the time, the bedroom will act as a playroom (when I get it finished) and the bathroom is my own personal sanctuary (home tour coming later this month), but a small percentage of the time, those two rooms are perfect for having people spend the night. They are far enough away from the rest of the household that our guests have privacy and they don't have to share a bathroom with the rest of the family.
Breakfast in the Morning
One of my favorite parts of staying at someone else's house is the food. I feel like people go all out when they have guests and make all of their best meals. Having people over gives me the perfect excuse to cook a full, hot breakfast. Letting your friends and family relax while you fix them a meal and handle all of the clean up is a great way to make them excited to come back and stay with you again!
In preparation for having guests in our home in the near future, I stopped by Walmart and found this end cap display featuring three new Softsoap Liquid Foaming Handsoap scents. Kitchen Citrus Bliss, Whipped Cocoa Butter and Jasmine & White Cotton foaming hand soaps are an affordable way to dress up your sink and provide your guests with a more welcoming environment! Doesn't the package design make you want to clean your house, throw open the windows and invite people over to celebrate spring with you?
What special things do you do or buy to get ready to host guests in your home?