Mid summer and Holidays are the most likely seasons to entertain overnights guests. Is your home ready to receive them during this upcoming holiday season? Reach way back in your memory bank the last time you experienced amazing service in a hotel. I am willing to bet most everyone will have a similar response, "They thought about every detail." Now apply this positive experience to your home, look at your guest spaces both for sleeping and bathroom needs. You can be the Martha Stewart of your home. Here is a l-o-n-g list of items to have in place at all times:.
- Linens (bedsheets and bath towels) should be all white. You have eliminated the stress of matching a certain decor and your guests will be comforted that the linens are clean. Wash or dry clean all blankets. Purchase brand new non allergenic sleeping pillows from your local discount housewares chain store, approx. $5.00 each. I buy all my linens here at a minimum of 60% off retail prices, I am referring to places such as Ross Stores and TJ Maxx.
- Save unused toiletry bottles (shampoo, body wash, wrapped bar soap etc..) from your past hotel stays, your guests will enjoy using brand new unopened products. Your local pharmacy chain store will also have travel sized bottles for typically $1.00 a piece. Fragrance-free products work best for both genders. De-clutter your medicine cabinet and include fresh toothpaste tube, unopened extra toothbrushes ($1 each), headache/pain relievers, tummy upset products, disposable drinking cups, fresh box of tissues, easy to reach toilet paper rolls, can of bathroom fragrance spray. Also have a supply of feminine hygiene products to avoid those embarrassing questions.
- Single serving sized bottled water for bedside. Easy access to wall outlet to recharge various personal electronics overnight. De-clutter guest room especially if it is used as your home office. Bedside lamp, alarm clock and maybe a space heater and fan should also be in the room. A shy guest will not ask you for items of personal comfort, have it ready for them.
- Most dry cleaners can clean your sleeping bags that may be used for teen guests and children unphased by sleeping on the living room floor; remember to clean your carpets too.
- Purchase a $5.00 bag of tube socks for guests to use during sleep on chilly nights and house slippers especially if your household rule is "no shoes indoors". No need to wash them, just toss after they have gone.
- Install wall nightlights for navigation to the bathroom, kitchen or to check on the kids.
- Check your umbrellas to ensure they are in good working order and your extra coats and jackets are clean and smell fresh for your guests' use in the event of unexpected change in the weather.
I have one friend that recently found it easier to clean up their apartment and move in with her boyfriend for the week her visiting guest was in town. Better to live apart for one week and preserve a long friendship.
If you really wish to provide every detail as the perfect host to your guest, House & Garden has a long practical checklist for you to review/print to assist you in getting your home ready: MY GUEST PLANNING LIST (click)
Perhaps Host-Extraordinaire is a title reserved only for the most patient of hosts, especially if it is your least favorite Aunt Mildred and her wild bunch who has unexpectedly dropped in on you. In this case save your funds that you would have used for the above items and offer to assist your guest with the motel bill around the corner.