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How to Prepare for House Guests

Guests coming to visit for the holidays? Here is Domestic CEO's list of items to make sure you are stocked up on before your company arrives.

By
Amanda Thomas
December 5, 2013
Episode #088

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Tip #2: Stock Up the Bedroom

Now it’s time to head to the bedroom. We've already talked about how to create a guest bedroom (and if you haven't checked out that episode, I recommend you do so immediately).

Make sure wherever your guests will be sleeping has at least 2 pillows per guest. I would recommend having one soft pillow and one firm one so your guests can pick the one that best suits their sleeping styles. Also, keep a few light blankets that can be layered onto the bed just in case it’s a bit colder than your guests may like. Layering blankets will allow your guests to adjust the warmth to the level that’s right for them.

Finally, if the bathroom isn’t attached to the bedroom, it’s good to have the path to the bathroom slightly lit. A small lamp in the hall or a nightlight plugged into the wall is a great way to keep your guests from bumping into furniture and décor in the middle of the night.

A few other things you should stock up on for your guests:

  • Newspapers: If you know your houseguests love the news, purchase a local paper, a national paper, or (if you know it) their preferred paper so they can read it over breakfast.
  • Magazines: Keep a few types of magazines or attractive coffee table books on hand for guests to browse at their leisure.

Tip #3: Stock Up the Kitchen

The last area to focus on for when guests visit is the kitchen. Make sure to have a variety of morning drinks such as milk (cow’s, almond, or soy, depending on your guests’ tastes), juice, coffee, and a variety caffeinated and decaffeinated teas. Chamomile and peppermint are great decaffeinated teas that will can help your guests relax before heading to bed, while black teas like Earl Grey or Irish Breakfast will help kickstart their morning. A medium roast coffee is an excellent way to keep coffee-drinking guests happy, with just the right blend of flavor and caffeine.  Also keep on hand a variety of additions to drinks including honey, agave nectar, lemon, cream or half and half, and sugar or sugar substitutes.

For daytime and evening drinks, it’s good to stock up on bottled water (especially for on the road), and a variety of sparkling drinks such as Perrier or La Croix water and sodas. (You can ask your guests what they would prefer.)  If your house guests enjoy a night cap or a glass of wine, stock up on a few moderately-priced white and red wines. Check out 5 Clues to Decoding a Wine Label for tips on how to purchase just the right bottles.

If your guests are like mine, you end up chatting around the table until late at night, so be prepared with a few snacks for everyone to munch on. When it comes to what your house guests will want to snack on, it’s a good idea to stock up on both sweet and salty options.  Snack mixes or trail mixes are great ways to combine both of those flavors. Keep a few types of chips on hand, such as tortilla chips with salsa, or plain potato chips with other dips, and a few strictly sweet snacks, such as rice krispie bars, cookies, or individually wrapped chocolates or hard candies.

If you know some of your house guests have specific types of allergies, make sure to ask them which foods are acceptable before you go out to the store to stock up. It can uncomfortable for a guest to speak up about a sensitivity or allergy, so make sure to ask beforehand to get any uncomfortablness about of the way (and also, so you don't accidentally poison a guest). 

See also: How to Save Time at the Grocery Store

So there you have it, my complete list of items to stock up on when you're preparing for company. What items do you keep in stock? What do your guests ask for most frequently? Share your experiences and suggestions on my Facebook wall, or tweet me @thedomesticceo.

Until next time, I’m the Domestic CEO, helping you love your home.

Bathroom, bedroom, snacks, and welcome mat images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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