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Hosting Overnight Guests and How to make them feel welcome

As we move deeper into the holiday season, many of us will host family and friends in our homes either during daytime festivities over perhaps overnight.

You don’t need to have a lot of room, but I have a few tips at helping to make room for anyone who needs a pillow to rest their head for the night.

Yes, it’s a bit exhausting to have extra people within your walls, and yes, it does provide more work – for a time. But really, having guests especially for the holidays can create special memories. They usually play with our children, which everyone enjoys, and it provides us a nice break from the hum-drum of daily life. Hosting guests doesn’t have to be a pain – it can be something you look forward to.

Here are 8 ways you can help visitors feel more at home:

1. Be yourself. Truly. Most house guests aren’t expecting a perfectly immaculate house, and if they are, there’s no point in loading your shoulders with the pressure to try. The best kind of guests are there to see you, not you on stage.

2. Provide extra toiletries. We have a basket of basic essentials that we bring out for overnighters, and we leave it on the guest bathroom counter for them to help themselves. It’s nothing fancy – just toothpaste, soap, lotion, shampoo and conditioner, and unopened toothbrushes. I stock up on some of these items when they’re on sale. Of course you can always treat them to soap and moisturizer from Simply Good Soap.

3. Make things easy to find. When they first arrive, have all their needed towels either out on the bathroom counter, or on their bed or night stand. If they’re early risers – earlier than you, anyway – leave out some basic breakfast goodies for them to help themselves. Don’t forget the dishes and silverware, too.

If they arrive after a long trip, put a little basket of refreshments on their night stand. A simple bottle of water, a package of nuts, maybe an apple, and a little welcome note can really make them feel welcome.

4. Keep coffee and tea on hand. Even if you don’t drink it, a coffee drinker is always thankful to have the means to make a cup of joe in the morning. It doesn’t have to be anything high-end if you don’t drink it, but make sure it’s fresh.

5. Create some simple extra touches to make your guests feel welcomed and attended to. Place an inexpensive flower in a small vase on their night stand. Provide a great-smelling candle and a book of matches. Make sure there’s an alarm clock available, too.

6. Provide reading material. Collect a few magazines and put them in an easy-to-reach basket near their bed. Maybe even select a good book of short stories (short stories are good, so that guests can actually finish what they’re reading, as opposed to a long novel). If there’s something you’ve really wanted your house guest to read, now’s a great time to oh-so subtly leave it on the night stand, waiting to be read.

7. Let them help around the house. Don’t put them to work, of course, but I’ve learned after having many overnight guests over the years, people will be more relaxed and feel less like an intruder if you say yes to their inevitable question, “Can I do anything?” Let them do something small, like set the silverware at the dinner table, or stir the soup bubbling on the stove.

8. Keep your immediate family’s time sacred. This can be challenging, depending on the situation, but do your best to still spend some quality time with just those in your household. This is especially true if you have small children, who don’t always understand why Mom is busier than usual, or why a new person is sleeping in their playroom. It doesn’t have to be anything major – simply continuing with the usual bedtime story, or snuggling on the couch and asking about her day – can keep little ones content and less likely to act up for attention.

What other tips have you used for guests?

Well, if you're a gift giver, then I have just the solution!

After the success of my IG Live Holiday Catalog, I decided to extend the gifts to my website.

Just go to the site to find one of a kind curated gift sets that you may want for yourself, but I have enough for your guests too! That is, if you get the ones you want before they are gone.

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