Preparing for Overnight Guests

Do you have guests in town for the holidays? Read these tips for creating a warm and inviting space for your guests to enjoy!

bedside... teal headboard, wood nightstand, sophisticated palette:

via Traditional Home

Spend the night as your guest.

This will allow you to note and fix any issues you come across. Is the room temperature okay? Always make sure there are enough blankets and that the pillows are comfortable. Another thing to note is the morning light! Do your curtains sufficiently block the sun?

Did you see my guest room makeover today? I shared some quick and easy ideas for making guests feel welcome, like providing the Wifi password in a frame and putting together a basket of travel-size toiletries in case they forgot something! by...

via MrandMrs2015

The Essentials

Make sure to have key emergency items readily available. You don’t want to make your guests feel embarrassed having to ask for certain items! This should include extra toilet paper, feminine products, air freshener or matches, and a plunger.

Other items to have ready in the room or nearby should include:

  • wi-fi password
  • water carafe and glass
  • remote control instructions
  • waste basket
  • spare key and/or garage code
  • easily accessible outlets
  • fresh towels
  • clear space in your closet with plenty of hangers
  • extra toothbrush
  • lint roller
  • contact solution
  • assorted medicine
  • hair dryer
  • iron and ironing board
  • luggage rack

via Snapdragon Studio

Go Above and Beyond

  • Find out what your guests like to eat/drink for breakfast and snacks and have those items on hand.
  • Get the coffee ready ahead of time so all they have to do is hit the power button!
  • Leave a stack of magazines or a favorite book for your guests to peruse.
  • Compose a list of favorite activities, shops and restaurants for your guests to check out!
  • Place a vase of fresh flowers on the bedside table.

These little touches can go a long way in making your guests feel welcome! I hope you find them helpful and please share in the comments if you have any additional suggestions!

 

Feature Image via Studio McGee

Spice Up Your Thanksgiving Menu!

Looking for some new recipes to elevate your Thanksgiving Day menu this year? I’ve got you covered! Here are some recipes that are sure to leave your guests craving more and begging you to share the recipes.

Caramel Churro Chex Mix

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It’s always a good idea to have a few snacks on hand. You may want to make an extra batch of this one because it looks too good to resist!

Arugula, Pear & Goat Cheese Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette

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My sister-in-law made this last Thanksgiving and everyone loved it.  It’s the perfect mixture of flavors and also a great way to balance out the heavier dishes.

Roasted Green Beans with Balsamic Browned Butter

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If you only choose one recipe from this whole post to try, you HAVE to make this one!  This is another recipe my sister-in-law made last Thanksgiving and it was so delicious. Browned butter makes everything taste so yummy.

Easy Paleo Gravy

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This simple recipe substitutes cauliflower for flour.  This secret ingredient makes for a thick and creamy gravy.

Step up your flavor game with these easy butter recipes; one sweet and one savory.

Whipped Cinnamon Pumpkin Honey Butter

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Spread this on your rolls and use the leftovers to spread on your bagels and toast the next morning!

Homemade Herb Butter

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Try adding a little of this to your mashed potatoes, turkey and pretty much anything else on your plate.

Garlic Butter Smashed Sweet Potatoes with Parmesan

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This recipe looks so simple and so tasty.

Thyme-Scented Squash Gratin

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Choose squash over potatoes for your gratin this year.

Crescent Roll Apple Dumplings

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This seems like a fool-proof recipe that even a non-baker (me) could pull off. What’s better than a variation of apple pie à la mode?

Sparkling Clementine Thyme Cocktail

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I love having a special cocktail for guests at my holiday parties. This is almost too pretty to drink! It looks so refreshing and festive.

Good luck with your planning and hopefully you’ve been inspired!

Outdoor Entertaining

Outdoor parties are one of the best parts of summer.  The vibe is relaxed and the focus is on enjoying the nice weather while creating fun memories with friends and family.  Read our 5 tips for getting your summer soiree just right, and let us know, what are your tricks for a successful party?

KEEP THE BUGS AT BAY

In the Midwest, outdoor entertaining can be difficult to enjoy with the amount of mosquitoes that linger outside. Adding lanterns with citronella candles add ambiance while deterring bugs.  Arm your backyard with bug deterring plants.  Planting garlic, basil and peppermint in your garden bed and strategically placing potted plants of lavender, lemon balm, and marigolds around seating areas will do double duty adding color to your patio while keeping your guests safe from bug bites!  Also having plenty of insect repellent on hand is a must!

2016-06-06

Potted Lavender | Potted Marigolds | Lanterns

KEEP FOOD FRESH

On hot summer days it is essential to keep food fresh for your guests.  If your kitchen is close to the back door, set up a buffet inside on the island.  If not, set up the food table near the door to keep temperatures stable and remember to periodically replenish ice.  Room temperature snacks are also great to have around seating areas.

AVOID OVERCROWDING

Planning separate stations for food, drinks and activities combats potential jams and helps maintain a nice flow. Also, creating various seating areas allow guests to easily move around and engage in smaller, more intimate conversations.

CREATE AMBIANCE

String cafe lights around your patio or along your fence to add instant charm to your backyard. Position a seating area around a fire pit and roast s’mores.  Don’t forget the tunes!  For those who do not have outdoor speakers, have a Bluetooth speaker ready with your perfectly curated playlist.  When decorating your outdoor space, treat it like a room.  Adding indoor elements like a rug, pillows, throws and a mirror will create a cozy and inviting place for your guests.

PLAN FOR GAMES AND PREP THE POOL

Having activities ready creates an enjoyable atmosphere. Whether it’s a round of cards or tournament of bags or washers, games always ensure that guests are having a great time.  If you have a pool, make sure to keep extra towels, sunblock, and floats for guests.