- When hosting holiday houseguests, go beyond their basic needs to offer maximum comfort in their sleeping spaces and bathroom accommodations
- In charge of a feast for 12? Be sure to mark anything that's off-limits in the refrigerator to ensure your egg nog doesn't go missing before the big meal
- If you're hosting the next generation, the holidays are a great time to dig out old games and toys
'Tis the season for houseguests! Whether you've been living in the same home for many years or recently purchased a new property, follow these tips to ensure your overnight visitors feel warm and welcome in your home.
The sleeping spaces
Whether your guests have a bed or will be relegated to a space on the floor, provide an assortment of blankets and pillows to ensure maximum comfort. While many people now use their cell phones as their alarm, you can also provide an easily programmable travel alarm clock on a small side table. Last, put out a small tray or bowl where guests can store their wallet, keys and other personal items.
The bathing basics
Be sure to show the guests which bathroom they should use during their stay. On the counter, provide easily forgotten essentials like shampoo, deodorant and toothpaste. If the bathroom isn't connected to your guests' sleeping space, consider lighting the way with a nightlight.
The fridge factor
Most houseguests won't touch the cupboards without asking but you should still be sure to label anything that's “off-limits” – lest you end up with Aunt Franny drinking all the egg nog before the party starts! Conversely, try to have a few easy-to-access snacks to tide your guests over as you prepare the big holiday meal.
It's all relative
You know your guests and relatives better than anyone, so take them into account as you prepare your home. If your sister is a coffee drinker, be sure you can offer her some in the morning. If your cousin is bringing their three children, set out your own kids' long-forgotten favorite toys and books to occupy them. Holiday houseguests come but once a year – by being proactive, you can ensure their visit is more pleasant than it is stressful – for both of you.