Santa won’t be the only one making an appearance later this year. Are you expecting friends and relatives to stay overnight this holiday season? To keep them comfortable and at the same time lower your stress level, we’ve developed a handy checklist so you won’t leave anything to chance.
Follow these suggestions, and once your guests arrive, you can enjoy their company instead of racing around cleaning and polishing. You also might want to read 15 Essentials for Guest Bed and Bathrooms.
1. Don’t Deep Clean
I knew a family that remodeled at least one room in their home every year right before Thanksgiving. Harried doesn’t begin to describe those two once the holiday rolled around. Prioritize what you clean and stick to the basics. Sweep or vacuum floors, clear tables and counters and sanitize the bathroom the guests use.
2. Add Welcoming Touches to the Guest Room
Place a lamp and favorite book on the bedside table, top the bed with a few throw pillows and an afghan for napping, or place a bouquet of fresh, cut flowers on the dresser.
3. Wash and Change the Linens
Offer your friends or family members clean, crisp sheets, not the one with the big hole in the center. Ditto for the blankets and pillows, even if you have to buy new ones. You may have laundered the bed linens after your last guests, but after sitting for a spell, they develop a stale smell.
4. Pack a Guest Kit
Hotels do this and so do good hostesses. Buy sample sizes of shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothpaste, mouthwash and dental floss during the year and stash them away. Place them in a basket in the guest bath, ready to use right before your visitors arrive.
5. Give Them Room in the Closet
Clear out an area so they can hang their clothes and so they won’t have to live out of a suitcase. If you want to go all-hotel on them, put a suitcase stand in the guest room.
6. Make Space for Parking
Not all overnighters fly in. Some drive and need a place to park their vehicle.
7. Put Toilet Paper in Plain Sight
This is nothing you want to have to hunt for when you need it.
8. Create a Snack Shelf
Visitors get hungry and not always when you want to eat. The polite ones won’t say anything. Let them know they can help themselves to anything in the designated area or from a special area of the refrigerator or pantry.
9. Place Throws in the Living Room
With November and December comes cold weather. Your company will appreciate having small blankets available on your sofa and chairs so they can warm up.
10. Place Fuzzy, Warm Socks by the Door
Let your visitors shed their shoes or boots at the door and don a pair of cozy socks while they’re inside your home. Collect these during the year when they go on sale.
11. Infuse Your Home With Seasonal Scents
If you bake, do so with pumpkin, ginger and chocolate. Otherwise, light scented candles that have a traditional holiday fragrance. Fill your slow cooker with hot, spiced cider and everyone can help themselves.
12. Don’t Forget the Kids
Create a table where they can play board games and include age-appropriate games.