By far the most precious thing you can give overnight guests is privacy.
It's so awkward to be a guest; you feel on display, like you have no control over your situation.
Provide a little sanctuary for your overnight guests; a retreat where they can go and regroup.
These tips for hosting overnight guests will help ensure they feel at home in your home.
If you don't have a spare bedroom, kick one of the kids out of his or her room for the visit. (You can make it up to him later.)
Overnight guests need a quiet refuge, especially older people who aren't used to being around rambunctious youngsters. (At least, not anymore.)
Here are the basics to include to make a room comfy and cozy for your overnight guests:
These lovely amenities are simply icing on the cake. These aren't essential - but providing them might get you back in the will.
If there is any way to give your overnight guests their own bathroom, do it. No one likes sharing bathrooms with people outside the immediate family. Yeah, you love Uncle Scott - but do you really want to negotiate around his shaving supplies?
For extra comfort, stock the guest bath with:
Ask your overnight guests about food allergies, dislikes, and dietary restrictions. Buy snacks that they can help themselves to between meals. And cook ahead so you can spend time with your guests.
How could anyone not love Fluffy? And Bruiser, who wouldn't hurt a fly? Tell that to Grandpa who sneezes when you say "cat". Or to Aunt Alice who's terrified of anything on four legs.
Yes, this is your pet's home. But they have to make compromises, too. Warn guests that you have a boa constrictor.
They may decide that the nearest Embassy Suites would work better. If not, well, they were warned.
That said, keep pets confined during a guest's visit as much as possible. Dogs can get a bit territorial when strangers are wandering around the house in the dark.
And you don't want cousin Flora to be afraid to go to the bathroom at night.
Knowledge is power. Make a list of any planned activities for your guests. Also give them brochures on activities in your area, and a list of restaurants.
Ask them to look the information over and let you know what they'd like to do during their stay. And while you're at it, jot down your family's daily routine.
What time do you usually get up for breakfast? Is it a serve yourself affair? When is lunch and dinner? When do the kids usually take a nap? Do you take afternoon walks? What time do you usually go to bed?
Make it clear they can adopt any routine they like, but at least they know what the rest of the family is up to. There's nothing worse for a guest than sitting in your room wondering what the day holds in store for you. You want guest, not a prisoner.
Finally, give them their freedom. If you have a second car, let them poke around by themselves if they feel up to it. Give them a key to the house so they can go for a walk and get back inside.