How to be the Hostess with the Mostess
The airports will soon be bustling with travelers headed home for the holidays and highways will be jammed with students and siblings making their way home to loved ones. The preparation and hubbub of it all can create a lot of stress, but there’s nothing better than having everyone reunited around the table for a delicious feast! If your home is the central gathering place, you may feel pressure to start deep cleaning, rearranging furniture, and stocking up on food and entertainment. Don’t overthink it! Make your guests feel at home with these hosting tips and pointers. You’ll be the hostess with the mostess in no time!
First, evaluate who will be visiting and how you can make them most comfortable. Where will they be sleeping? Which bathroom will they be using? What spaces will they use the most? After answering these questions, focus on setting up these key locations.
Help your guests feel at home by creating a warm and inviting guestroom. Prepare ahead of time by decluttering the space and, in particular, the closet. Don’t feel the need to clear out the whole room, but be sure to leave a comfortable amount of space for guests to unpack and relax after their travels. Set up the room with fresh linens on the bed, an extra blanket, and a trash bin. They’ll appreciate their own space!
Hide bathroom clutter in a container under the sink and be personal care items are easily accessible. You don’t want your guests searching through all your cabinets and closets looking for toilet paper! Stock your guest bathroom with everything your guests could need while they are visiting. Place fresh linens and towels in a decorative basket or neatly stack them on the counter. Be extra helpful by providing bathroom necessities that travelers often forget such as toothbrushes, razors, shampoo, and conditioner. Having these things ready to go avoids the awkward feeling that guests may have when asking to borrow some soap.
It’s likely your guests will be spending a lot of time in your family room and other living spaces, but that doesn’t mean you need to transform the entire place before they arrive! Just do a little rearranging, and your space will look like a page out of a home and garden magazine. Stack books and magazines in neat piles and camouflage clutter in decorative baskets. Flip sofa cushions to show the cleaner side, and hide any stains by folding a clean blanket over the top.
After you’ve hidden the clutter, it’s time to set the mood! Dress up your place with décor to get into the spirit of the season! Hang a decorative wreath on the door, set holiday pillows on the sofa, and place seasonal flowers on the table. Since your guests will likely be using your Wi-Fi, consider posting the password in a decorative frame and placing it in a convenient location. Then, warm up the atmosphere with a scented candle, themed lighting, and background music. These small extra touches will make your guests feel comfortable and at home.
Set up a space for the kiddos! If you already have little ones in your home, this will be much easier. Just make sure your kids know that others will likely be playing with their toys and advise them to keep toys and games that they don’t want to share in a safe place. If you don’t have children in your home, but some will be visiting, move anything breakable out of reach and above eye level. Then, create a small entertaining space for them to play with toys or do a craft.
So, your guests have arrived! Your hosting has begun. All the preparation you’ve done beforehand makes serving your guests easy. Now it’s time for the mouthwatering meals, family games, and memory making!
The more mouths to feed, the merrier it’ll be! Depending on how long your guests will be visiting, you may have a lot of meal prepping ahead of you! Keep your meals simple and easy, they don’t have to be elaborate to be very much appreciated. Do some research beforehand to determine if you need to provide options for people with food allergies or vegetarian preferences. Make sure your guests know where to grab a drink, and keep plenty of munchies lying around! Stock up on healthier options for mid-day snacks, but be sure to stash some sweeter goodies to pass around in the evening. You can even dress up store bought treats by placing them in your own decorative bowl or tray!
The hostess with the mostess always plans for entertainment! Check around town for fun community events or pull out your board games! Find games that everyone can play together and others that the kids can play while parents mingle. When you’re ready to relax, pull out classic movies and pass around the popcorn! Don’t hesitate to ask your guests what they would like to do while they are in town, or suggest they bring their favorite games. They will likely be happy to share!