Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

What makes a good/bad hostess?

Status
Not open for further replies. Please create a new topic or request for this thread to be opened.

weegem

Shiny_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2005
Messages
338
Hi all!

My cousin, his wife, and their 5 month old baby will be visiting me in Scotland for a couple of weeks from the US. I haven''t seen my cousin for close to 15 years (we were close as teenagers) and have never met his wife. This cousin is the only one from that side of the family that has kept up some sort of contact with me through the years, so I really want to make a good impression. They''ll be staying with us in a guest bedroom downstairs, and I want them to feel comfortable and as ''at home'' as possible.

When you visit someone, what kinds of things do you really appreciate? As a host/ess, what are your favourite things to do to make your guests feel special? Also, share any good/bad experiences you''ve had with guests or when you were a guest and what you would''ve done to make it better :)

Thanks!
 

ephemery1

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 20, 2006
Messages
1,724
Sounds like you are already going to be a great hostess, just from what you''ve written in your post!


But to make them feel comfortable in their room, maybe find out if there is anything in particular they need for the baby... I''m sure they''ll be bringing everything with them, but just to see if there is anything you could help with. And maybe put a fun basket of "UK-specific" things in their room.... tea, candy, etc. Whenever my friend''s mom goes to London, I have her bring me back Flake bars and Yorkshire tea, since you can''t get those things in the US! And I always appreciate having fresh flowers waiting for me in my room... definitely makes me feel welcome.

My favorite thing about visiting people who live somewhere fun is doing all the "local" stuff... so don''t feel like you have to be tourist-y the whole time. When you''re in another country, just going to the supermarket can be an adventure!
 

appletini

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 29, 2004
Messages
2,696
one cute thing I saw in Martha Stewart living was to put a little toiletry basket in the guest bath with some washcloths and travel size things like soap, toothpaste, shampoo, and a fresh toothbrush....like a hotel...anyway it was really cute.
 

Efe

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2006
Messages
773
When I have company, I put fresh flowers in the guest room, a basket of toiletries, the local paper, a travel alarm clock, a mini coffee maker, and a loaded Ipod, so they can relax with some music. In this case, I would put a basket of baby stuff -- wipes, diapers, etc. and an inexpensive play pen so they have a safe place for the baby to sleep.
 

ljmorgan

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 5, 2006
Messages
1,037
When guests come to stay, I always find out what beverages they like and make sure that I am stocked. Re-wash the guest sheets the night before they get there so they smell fantastic, and I stock the guest bathroom with toiletries and items that they might need. I will make a big breakfast for them, and will never let them help me cook anything! I want them to just be able to relax and enjoy. I really love having guests over, I think having a B&B would be a lot of fun.
 

Ann

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
1,531
I can''t add much to what has already been said.

I keep a basket of toiletries in both my guest baths, mens and womens goodies.

I also have a nice pen, paper, a phone and phonebook. I just recently bought a
water carafe from William Sonoma, for bedside use. It''s monogrammed, looks nice and works!

Of course, a TV, radio.

I also have extra pillows, different firmness for different folks! Blankets?
Rocking chair?

There will be diapers, so you might think about some kind of diaper disposal.
Extra waste basket lined with garbage bags? Whatever will work for you.
 

weegem

Shiny_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2005
Messages
338
Those are all fantastic suggestions! Thanks everybody. I definitely want them to have as stress-free and relaxing time as they can. Lots of good food and good sights. Can''t wait!
 

Mara

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2002
Messages
31,003
hmm well our guests have their own bedroom and bathroom and it's away from our master bedroom area so it's like they have a little corner of the house to themselves. privacy is nice. their bathroom is stocked with towels and also little toiletries and soaps and candles and the like. if they need anything i ask them when they arrive...aka an extra hair dryer or something like that. their room is pretty posh...hehe i would like sleeping in there for sure, the bed has a featherbed, down comforter, lots of cushy pillows. typically they will take magazines from downstairs up into their room to read (i have a ton of magazines downstairs)...but in general it's just making them feel welcome, like they can ask you for something/anything...including them in daily activities but knowing when to give them their space. also if you know they have a favorite type of drink or food or something, we typically try to get that and have it on hand (aka greg's stepmom loves Squirt and vodka, so he makes sure we have Squirt when she comes to visit and his mom loves sourdough bread so we might get a loaf to have on hand for her)..that kind of thing. and also we plan a bunch of fun things to do but we also schedule in down time/relaxation time. oh and put a clock/alarm clock in their room too, a nice bright or dimming lamp so they can read by the bed etc.

most of all i just think try to imagine what you like when you visit a hotel or a friend's house and do the same, and just be relaxed! have fun.
 

Kismet

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 6, 2005
Messages
2,991
You might want to be careful about putting fresh flowers in the room or at least check to see if any of them have alergies or are sensitive to scents. A friend came to visit me at my parent''s house once and, since it was spring, my mother cut some of her lilacs to put in the room. I think my guest suffered through one night before she told us she was miserable.
 

diamondfan

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2005
Messages
11,016
They have a baby, but the US has different items than Scotland I would presume. Anything you can get in advance so they have to take less with them would be appreciated I am sure. Also, privacy and alone time is good for both your guests and you too! I also would not overly schedule activities, they might have jet lag and the baby might not be adjusted to the time changes so I would have some consideration there too!
 

FireGoddess

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 25, 2005
Messages
12,145
I like to make a welcome basket for them full of stuff they might need - some includes bath stuff, soaps, lotions, bath mitt, and other stuff like chocolates or fun stuff they might like. I also put some magazines and a vase of flowers in the room. I think flowers always brighten up a guest space. I also give them plenty of towels, blankets, pillows, etc, and then let them know that they should feel absolutely comfortable getting stuff from the fridge, doing what they like, etc.
 

JCJD

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 8, 2004
Messages
1,977
Nobody''s touched on this, and it''s one of my pet-peeve''s. Host/ess''s tend to go a little crazy making sure their guests are well entertained the entire duration of the trip. At least in my family and my in-laws, there is a strong tendency to overbook everybody. Sight-seeing is nice, but steer clear of scheduling activities down to the minute, like in Meet the Parents. DH and I visited his sister and their new baby over the new year and did NOTHING outside of church, a little shopping, and one lunch out for 3 full days, and it was FABULOUS! Most of the time when we visit family, we arrive Friday, go to the zoo Sat morning, then the planetarium Sat night, then a museum Sunday, and another museum Monday, then Tuesday we go to historic XYZ, and leave Wednesday, and it''s just exhausting. Everything else sounds great! You care about your guests, and that makes you a great hostess!
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
I haven''t read other responses... but I know that if the host is having a good time, enjoying the event-- while also doing their duties-- introducing people, mingling... making sure that everyone is included, comfortable and participating... and fed, has drinks... generally being congenial while hosting its key.

One of my family members always goes all out... but as a result is always crabby and cranky and stressed during the party that guests feel like they are a burden. Despite all her effort to make sure that the napkins match... the meal is just the right temperature... etc, no one really ever has a good time. She gets to bogged down in the tangible details and misses, completely the most important part of entertaining-- to entertain and be entertained.

On the other hand, others I know may not have all the I''s dotted and T''s crossed with the minutia but they remember to care for their guests and socialize with them... and to make them feel welcome. That is much more enjoyable.

Dry chicken and mismatched napkins can be forgiven and forgotten when faced with a warm welcoming smile. But the best chicken and linen coordination wither under a frowning face and curt address.
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
Date: 3/8/2007 7:49:33 PM
Author: JCJD
Nobody''s touched on this, and it''s one of my pet-peeve''s. Host/ess''s tend to go a little crazy making sure their guests are well entertained the entire duration of the trip.
That drives me nutz!
I go on vacation to relax tourist stuff is second to that. Also annoying is someone who thinks they have to spend every second with the guests let them do their own thing at times.
For example if they want to go to the some tourist thing don''t assume you have to go with offer to drop them off and pick them up.

Whats neat in your area that the typical tourist never finds?
I love going to new areas and finding those places from friends living in the area.
 

divergrrl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2002
Messages
2,224
JCJD hit it on the head about overscheduling, and while everyone''s suggestions are fabulous, having a 5 month old baby means you are all on the baby''s schedule, especially if momma is still nursing. You might be able to plan one easy thing a day, depending on the baby''s temperament. If you have a laid back little one who travels well, then it''ll be easier to do more activities. We did a lot with our 5 month old, but he was always chillin''. My best friends daughter would go from zero to ear-blistering screaming in 2.3 seconds flat and they could never go anywhere. It just depends on that little one.

When I visited my SIL with my baby, she borrowed a portable crib, a highchair, and a stroller for us from a friend. Of course if you don''t know anyone with these items, don''t sweat it....but it sure is nice if its easy for you to do.

Seeing how much you care about their enjoyment, you''re already a great hostess...just enjoy yourself!

Jeannine
 
Status
Not open for further replies. Please create a new topic or request for this thread to be opened.
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    Recutting And Resetting A Heirloom
    Recutting And Resetting A Heirloom
    Princess Diana: Timeless Jewelry Every Woman Should Own
    Princess Diana: Timeless Jewelry Every Woman Should Own
    Diamond Jewelry For 4th Of July Quarantine Celebrations
    Diamond Jewelry For 4th Of July Quarantine Celebrations

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top