With the worst of COVID-19 seemingly behind us, and vaccinated Americans resuming near-normal lives, thousands of families are getting back together at last. But while hosting overnight guests can be a joy, it comes with a few responsibilities, chief among them making your guests feel welcome without running yourself ragged. If there are overnighters in your future, here are six tips for preparing and managing a visit that is pleasurable for all.
Stock the Guest Room – Nothing says welcome like flowers, so a small vase with a few fresh blooms is nice. It’s also thoughtful to leave tissues, a bottle of water, a few mints or chocolates, and a note with your wi-fi number on it. Besides leaving towels in the guest room, it’s a nice touch to leave a little basket of hotel-size bottles of lotion, shampoo and body wash.
Communicate Ahead of Time – You should know in advance if your guests have any allergies or food preferences, or have any special requests. They should know what time the kids get up when the showers are busiest and any other family routines.
Keep Meals Simple – The more you can do ahead of time, the more you can relax and enjoy your visit. Stock the pantry with basics and the fridge with plenty of fresh fruit and veggies. Prepare a couple of breakfast and/or dinner casseroles you can freeze or refrigerate in advance and heat up as you need them.
Keep It Tidy – There is no need for heavy cleaning when you have house guests, but keep the bathrooms tidy, check the guest bath for wet towels, and keep the living areas neat and picked up.
Create a Fun Zone – The family room is perfect, but you can create a fun zone anywhere by stocking a sturdy box with cards, books, board games, jigsaw puzzles, and sticker books—anything to encourage playtimes for all ages.
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