How to Roll Out the Red Carpet for Your Guests

Me and Susan

As I type this, one of my dearest friends and her daughter are in a plane flying across the country to visit me in Durango. (That’s her and me in the photo from years ago.)

I’ve spent the past few days preparing for her arrival, because she’s not just any guest, she’s special – we’ve shared wine, laughter and tears, watched our children grow up together and supported each other through the thick and thin of life.

I haven’t always been this way.  I used to approach guests the way I approached life – with overwhelm, dread and last minute preparation.  However, I’ve been feeling this deep desire to show my loved ones how much they truly mean to me.  Not to simply say it but to show it!

With the holidays around the corner, I bet you may have some special guests coming for a visit, so I wanted to share with you how I’m starting to roll out the red carpet for those I love.

1.  Clear Your Calendar

Sure, you have things to do.  You always will, but you will far more cherish the memories made with the people you love than checking off tasks.  Make space to soak every moment with them in.

2.  Clean Your House

Personally, I love when people come to visit me, because it inspires me to put the extra special touches on my house. In fact, I think we should all live as if a guest might arrive any minute.  I’m still working on that.

3.  Plan Your Meals

There’s nothing worse than sitting around and trying to decide what you’re going to do for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  They’re the guests.  Take the pressure off and plan beforehand.  Make the reservations, cook the lasagna, stock the fridge.

4.  Create an Adventure

Whether it’s going to a local museum, or in my case, a day of skiing, create memories for your guests to have forever.

5.  Be a Connector

Why not throw a little cocktail party so that your guest can get to know other people in your life?  It’s a great way to spread the love.

6.  Mimic the Ritz

The moment you pull up at the Ritz, you feel like royalty.  Attention is paid to the details.  How does that translate to hostessing visitors in your home?  Buy a special soap for the bathroom.  Place lavender drops on their pillow.  Have the candles burning and music playing.  Know their favorite wine and have it chilled (or at room temp) for their arrival.  Have a piece of good dark chocolate by their bed.  It’s the little things that create a luxurious affair.

7.  Keep it Simple

Simplicity is elegance.  It’s far more important that you are relaxed than to try to impress with a six-course dinner.  You are the reason why they are visiting.  Don’t give them the stressed version of you.  Give them the simple and real one.
8.  Show them Your Love

The moment you see your special guest, give them the biggest hug and kiss possible.  Make them feel cherished.

Your special guest has traveled a long way to see you.  Honor it.

How do you prepare for your special guests? I’d love to know.




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5 Responses to How to Roll Out the Red Carpet for Your Guests

  1. My sister-in-law always has my favorite magazines, bottles of water, hand lotion and wonderful smelling candles ready whenever we visit for a night. Even if we’re sleeping on an air mattress in a basement bedroom, she covers it with a beautiful comforter, tons of pillows and the softest sheets I have ever felt.

    When we’re just visiting for the day, she always has a basket of my kids’ favorite snacks and wine she knows I love – even though she doesn’t like it. She always has a box of toys in the closet – though her daughter is off to college and coloring books on the table.

    I ALWAYS feel welcomed and loved. I realized all of this just recently and am really trying to live by her example and pass this on to my guests.

  2. thank you for this. I always get super excited when we have guest this list shows me how to make it a big deal, enjoy it but without being crazy…and that is really great since I have a lot of guests!!

  3. I am such a terrible hostess, I get stressed, I worry, etc etc. I am printing out this list, it is SO incredibly helpful!

    Linking back to you as well, thanks for the wonderful tips!

  4. I love these ideas! We’re often so worried about being enough, that we miss the opportunity adore our guests and cherish our time with them. This is a beautiful and fresh perspective on hosting. Thanks, Tonya.

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