Monday, October 18, 2010

Never put a comfortable bed in the guestroom, and other helpful hosting tips...


So anyhoo, a friend of mine was bitching and moaning to me recently about the *cough* rather extended stay of some house guests. Not that she didn't love these friends of hers, but she was kind of over loving them up close, if you know what I mean. She was ready to resume loving them from afar. 

After talking it through (there may have been alcohol involved), we came up with some surefire tips to ensure her future house guests never wear out their welcome. Thought I'd share our list with you, purely in the interest of public service.


1. The guest bed should not be so comfortable that the guests' own beds (in their own homes) compare unfavorably. Because that would be sad for them. A good hostess doesn't want her guests to be sad.

2. If you have any small children--or, better yet, teenagers--have your guests share a bathroom with them during their stay. This will make them feel like part of the family. It will also make them appreciate their own private bathroom--in their own home--that much more. They will be happy they have a private bathroom to go home to. A good hostess wants her guests to be happy.

3. Leave a tip jar on the kitchen counter. Salt it with a few bills. This will make your guests feel like they are at a resort, where tip jars abound. Who wouldn't want their vacay to feel like a resort?

4. Ask your guests to pick up your dry-cleaning on the way back from one of their sightseeing jaunts. They'll feel needed. Nothing gives people the warm fuzzies like feeling needed. And whatever you do, don't insult them by giving them the money to cover bill--they'll think you think they're cheap, and that would be rude.

5. Tell your guests you're a "green" household, and everyone showers together to conserve water. This is Mother Earth we're talking about--joining together for such a good cause will build a sense of camaraderie, a welcome addition to any vacation. Let's hear a kumbaya, people!

6. Have a "Lawrence Welk Sing-Along Party." Every night. Again, it's all about the camaraderie. To make the camaraderie even more festive, rent a bubble machine.

7. A middle-of-the-night fire drill will let your guests know you care about their safety. Schedule the first one for the fourth night; if they stay beyond a week, go for every night. Because, really, can you ever have too much safety?

My friend and I came up with more tips, but frankly, at this point, they just started getting silly (and perhaps a trifle inappropriate). How about y'all? Do you have any tips to add? I'm sure my friend would appreciate them.


Elizabeth Flora Ross said...

Thank your for starting a difficult Monday morning off with a hearty laugh! LOL Great stuff!

muffintopmommy said...

SO...when can I come for a visit? Wait, I think I hear my mother calling....
HA HA!! Too fracking funny! And don't think I'm not storing this list for the next time I have visitors!

abby mumford said...

as if i wasn't laughing hard enough already, when i got to the "let's here a kumbaya people" i almost fell out of my chair.

i kind of want to be your house guest now just to see which house welcoming events you'd do for me.

Unknown said...

OMG! Thank you, Linda, for fabulous Monday morning laugh.

Have a great day!

Adriana said...

These are hilarious! I love the fire alarm testing. No, you can't ever be too safe :))


This is hysterical!

I like to let my pets lick, chew, or urinate on guests who've overstayed their welcome.

And now I know why we have so many @#$% house guests -- the most comfortable bed in the place is in the guest room. Gotta fix that.


Patty Blount said...

Hm. Maybe the teenage bathroom part is why my guests never stay past that first night...

Kelly Breakey said...

Hey I think I know your friend. One of my gal pals and I had this same conversation, about a year ago. My favorite tip is the fire drill. I agree nothing says love like safety.

Jessica Lemmon said...

Lawrence Welk night! LOL! Thanks for the laugh!

Know what my spare bedroom has in it? A few dressers. That's right, guests sleep on a sofa that may be covered with dog hairs, and perhaps the dogs too...

Funny, they leave early in the a.m. and never stay more than one night.

Anonymous said...


Candyland said...

Oh, you mean it's not normal to have a tip jar out anyway?? Whoopsi.

Sharon Axline said...

Easy - I don't have friends. No friends - no friends show up.

Kari Lynn Dell said...

You have a spare room? Well, see, there's your first mistake right there.

Posey said...

LOL, Kari.

Oh I love this post, Linda. Hilarious!!

Linda G. said...

Elizabeth -- Glad you enjoyed it! :)

muffintopmommy -- Good! And if you come up with any of your own, be sure to let me know. :)

Abby -- Oh, but *I* am a much nicer hostess than my friend. ;) I leave gourmet chocolates on the the fluffy guest bed pillows. (Tee-hee.)

Jeannie -- Thanks! You too. :)

Adriana -- I'm glad you agree. Safety first! ;)

Tawna -- Yup. The uncomfortable guest bed is essential to the equation. Though, really, the pet urination would probably work to get rid of me.

Patty -- LOL! Hey, I'm glad to hear one of my tips works. ;)

Kelly -- I suspect this conversation happens a lot between good friends. It's only rude people like me who bring it up in public. ;)

Jessica -- Tee-hee. I commend your foresight in not putting a bed in the spare room. I see it's working well for you. ;)

Suz -- I recognize that evil laugh! ;)

Candyland -- LOL! Hey, go for it. ;)

Sharon -- Aww. I know that can't be true. Though it would be an effective method, I admit. :)

Kari -- Doh! Dang. So simple, and yet I totally missed it.

Posey -- Thanks! You must've had overnight guests at one time or another too. ;)

Sierra Godfrey said...

I just love it!

They say houseguests and fish both smell after three days.

I say, make that comparison literal by leaving a fresh fish in the guest room. When it stinks, it's like a nice little timer for your guests to pack up and go.

demery said...

Hee Hee Hee Hee :) Miss Manners (in her Guide to Domestic Tranquility) has some tips on discouraging house guests from staying long... but hers are a little harsh and not nearly so much fun!

Our trick is that we just moved to a house with no guest room at all. If someone wants to stay they have to put one of our poor, delicate little children out of his bed for the night... sniff. sniff.

Linda G. said...

Sierra -- Ha! Maybe an opened can of sardines, strategically placed after the third day would work as well? ;)

demery -- LOL! Guilt--the old stand-by. Of course, you run the risk of your guests simply not caring if your poor, delicate children are ejected from their beds. ;)

Lola Sharp said...

LOVE this list. Funny stuff.