Preparing For Company

We have the pleasure and privilege of having my dad staying with us for week or two. While this is a joy, there's a lot of preparation that goes into opening your home to other people.

1. Keep things in perspective. Remember that your company is here to enjoy time with you, not search through each room and look for problems. Yes, things need to be clean and somewhat tidy, but don't stress out over having every single inch of the house spotless. Inviting, yes. Perfect, no.

2. Make one room a haven. We cleared out our spare bedroom of everything that was junky, cluttered or just taking up room, just so there would be one perfect little place to get away. It has minimal pet hair in it, towels, storage space to unpack and dresser tops for laying things out. It's all about creating a comfort zone for someone unfamiliar with our home.

3. Be sure to stock up. There should be plenty of food in the kitchen, plenty of towels in the linen closet and plenty of free time on your schedule. Think ahead to any needs your guests might have and have the necessities on hand.

4. Make this an opportunity to spruce things up. While you are cleaning and straighten, look at your rooms from a whole different perspective - that of someone who's not usually there. Are the piles of paperwork an eyesore? Take care of some of them before your company gets there and store the rest until after they leave.

5. Have an inviting entryway. Clear off the area around the front door, inside and out, so that everyone feels welcome. Sweep the porch, check all the lighting and clean the welcome mat. Inside, dust, clear away clutter and then sweep and mop.

6. Have several great conversation areas. Whether it's the dining room, around the kitchen table or all over the living room, make sure there are places to just sit and talk. Preferably your guests won't have to move your "stuff" out of the way to make room to sit, so think ahead to the kind of environment will encourage conversations.

7. Keep and open mind. Your guests will have needs and requests when they arrive, so be prepared to make an extra trip for something, adjust your schedule and change your plans. Remember that this is special time, not a set-in-stone plan that has to be followed.


  1. Great advice as usual, Laura. I hope you have a wonderful visit with your dad.


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