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Posts Tagged ‘welcoming home’

Last week I talked about how to be a good house guest. This week it’s time to look at how to be a good host. Again, I gathered ideas from a number of people who have felt that their host needed a little schooling in the art of making people feel welcome.

Here are their tips:

*  Find out when your guests will arrive. Try to be home to greet them or let them know if you’ll be late. People sort of wonder if their hosts want them to visit if they have to sit and wait on the doorstoop until their hosts arrive.

*  If your visitors are flying in, pick them up at the airport if possible. If they come by car, keep a lookout, and when they arrive, go out to greet them.

*  When you meet, shake their hands. Give them a big hug. Ask how the trip went. Tell them they look great; you like their new hair-do, their shirt, their purse. Help them with their luggage.

*  When they come in your house, offer them something to eat and drink. Ask if they want to go to their room or sit and visit for a few minutes first.

*  When you show your visitors to their room, a small bouquet of flowers on the dresser goes a long way in making them feel welcome. Also make sure the room is tidy and has clean sheets, tissues, an alarm clock, and a night light. Show guests how the windows work. Have a section of the closet and several drawers ready for them to use.

*  Put clean towels in the bathroom and fresh soap. Some guests  bring their own toothpaste and hair dryers, but many don’t.  So it’s a good idea to have these items available.

*  Explain about house noises and your animals’ habits. “Sometimes our cat jumps up on the bed. Just push her off.”

*  If you have a chiming clock, stop it. You may not hear it chiming every fifteen minutes, but they will.

*  Offer some ideas for fun things to do throughout the week. Give visitors some ideas and ask them to make some choices. “I thought one day we’d rent bikes in town and go biking. Another morning we could play golf, eat lunch in the village, and then take the gondola up the mountain.” Also, ask them what they would like to do.

*  Before your friends arrive, ask what foods they like. Do they eat breakfast? What do they like for lunch?

*  Have the refrigerator stocked, and tell them to help themselves. Have fruit and juices and a fresh coffee cake or brownies ready to snack on. If you’re a tea drinker but you know they like coffee, have a coffee pot and coffee ready. Invite guests to feel free to make their own coffee in the morning.

*  If your friends are staying more than a few days, suggest some places they might like to go by themselves while you attend to your business. This gives  everyone time off to regroup.

*  If your guests have children, tell the youngsters your rules. “Please don’t mess with the fish tank. Don’t turn on the stereo without asking. Stay away from the dog next door.”

Also remember, even with the most compatible visitors, there will inevitably be a few tense moments. Expect them to occur and do some shrugging.

If you follow this list, your guests will feel welcome throughout their visit.

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