Don’t let the stress of hosting guests, parties, and dinner this holiday season get you down. Whether you’re playing hotel for a few guests or hosting the entire Big Day, it’s understandable to worry about all the little things that can go wrong. We’ve got 12 tips for hosting holiday guests like a pro.
1. Create a Timeline
A plan will help lower your stress levels so that nothing jumps out at you. Your timeline can include the big things like when to pop the turkey in the oven to the small things like making sure all of the Christmas lights are on. You can even do a trial run of the Big Day. Make a list of everything you need to do and what time is best to do these things.
2. Cook Ahead
It’s a hassle to check the oven a million times and try to whip up some dessert while tending to guests. You want to enjoy your time with them, so cook as much ahead of time as possible. You can make soups that are easy to freeze, no-bake desserts, or put together your main dish the day before Christmas.
3. Clean Out The Guest Closet
Your guests might not want to throw their things all over your floor. Make space for them in a closet. Some of your guest closets might be used to stash every random thing in your house, so it’s a great time for you to de-clutter and give guests extra room.
4. Stock Your Pantry
More guests means less food in your pantry. Stock up on the essentials. Throw in some cereal and frozen breakfast items. Buy some late-night snacks like crackers or goldfish for grab-and-go. It’s also important to stock up on liquids like water and coffee. Remember to stock up on the essential items for your family as well. Guests just mean there are more people with their literal hand in the cookie jar.
5. Write A Welcome Note
How sweet is a handwritten note? Make your guests feel at home with a kind little note. You can help them with tips about the house. You can write down where to find extra toiletries or the closest coffee shop. Write down your WiFi password or instructions on how to use your remote for the electronics.
6. Take A Deep Breath
Remember to breathe. You’re the host, so people understand you’re under a lot of stress. Take a moment to sit down and chill out. Drink a glass of wine or take a bath. No one is going to get mad at you because they can’t find the toilet paper or they can’t find the milk in the morning.
7. Go For The Details
Love is in the details. Put out some fresh flowers in your guests’ room. Play soft music or put a spare phone charger by their bed. All of these little touches will make a big impact.
8. Break Out The Nice Stuff
The holiday meal means bringing out the big guns. This means the Christmas china that’s been in your family for ages, the real silverware, and those linen napkins that you so carefully ironed once in your life. Eat in your dining room that you only use once a year.
9. Plan Cleaning Tasks
You don’t want to be vacuuming right when guests come to your door. Knock out a little cleaning each day. You might dust one day, clear the clutter the next, then change the towels the next day. You don’t need to do everything in one day.
10. Remember The Last Things
Before guests arrive, make sure to tie up all of the loose ends. This means lighting candles throughout the home, turning on your music, and making sure the ice bucket is filled. You can set out beverages and put appetizers in the oven. Check the bathroom to ensure there is enough toilet paper and hand soap.
11. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
You’re the host, but you can ask for help. Ask family members to step in to help fill the ice bucket or cut fresh flowers. Don’t turn down a guest when they offer to bring a dessert. You don’t have to do everything on your own.
12. Have Fun
Sit back and enjoy your company. The best part of the holidays is getting together with loved ones. Enjoy your family and friends during this glorious season, and celebrate yourself for hosting such a great event.