Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Hospitality House

I love having people in my home. When I see the "Friends" episode where Monica works to exhaustion to get her apartment ready for everyone to come over and enjoy it....yeah. I totally get it.
Hospitality is something Justin and I both enjoy and because we have people over often, our kids almost expect guests in our home. If it's been more than a couple of nights where we don't have someone over it's like, "um, is someone coming over tonight, Mom?" haha. I love that!

I also love to keep it simple. If it's simple, I know I'll do it more often.
It certainly didn't start out that way...just ask Justin about my need to have the shower scrubbed when we'd have our newlywed friends over for dinner!

Ways we've kept hospitality simple:
  • We have some family friends we share a dining rule with: whoever is hosting gets Papa Murphy's cooking. How low-stress is that?!
  • Our "3rd Monday of the Month" Supper Club (sniff, sniff....miss you guys!) took turns bringing dinner and dessert to the host home.
  • Or inviting a guy over on a weekly basis who often brought the meal or dessert. Dominoes, KFC, Dairy Queen..... Caution: beware of the "Bachelor Casserole" that weighs more than your preschooler (just speaking from experience, that's all!)
When it comes to making my home set for visitors
there are 2 must-haves:

a candle and a candy dish

(when my guests need chocolate, they need chocolate, you know? How rude would it be of me to make them wait until I offer?!)

And that's how our family does hospitality. A super-long word meaning to share our home and lives with others. But here's my question to you: How do YOU do hospitality?
What is your "must-have" to make guests feel welcome?


  1. Hmmm...I make sure to tell people when they come in that I am glad they could come. However, my "go to" beverage is crystal light raspberry lemonade; always a hit. Having cute girls who eagerly welcome them doesn't hurt either :)

  2. I like your encouragement to keep it simple...I always have to remind myself that hospitality is NOT entertaining. I stress myself out about having people over because I try to entertain rather than just invite people into my life. My new must-use hospitality item (at least for the women we have over, although some guys like it too) is my pretty brown and yellow Pier One tea set. There's nothing like pouring hot tea out of a tea pot and drinking it from a pretty cup and saucer!

  3. oh and it's leah not josh haha!

  4. amm...I love blogs and am totally going to follow yours now!:)

  5. When we were first married I was up all night polishing the silver, ironing the linens... so we could have people over after worship. I slept thru the sermon and was so uptight at dinner no one was blessed. My husband was the one who helped me see that it's more about the people than the stuff. we keep it simple (mostly things that can be prepared ahead), let friends bring something (if they offer), and PLAN to enjoy PEOPLE! Challenge: If everything has to be perfect you will never MODEL hospitality - because no one will ever think they could match the standard YOU have set!

  6. Great post Barbara-I am always trying to make sure the house is just perfect for the last many years & now I just say if they are here to see if my house is a mess why disappoint them it is more about the time spent then what the house looks like. I ussually always entertain for the holidays or family get togethers. I say a pumpkin, cinnamon, or sugar cookie candle is great ambience & u got to have dessert for everyone to snack on. I have hosted a moms group once a month for dinner & devotions but have quit doing it for so many kid activities & not having much time but would love to start doing it again! Anyone interested in Tremont area?

  7. Since we are now the only ones left on Main Street, I guess 3rd Monday dinner is, um, just like any other Monday dinner!! I used to worry about cleaning and all that too, but seriously, I don't notice that stuff at other people's houses (unless there are huge dust bunnies or food spilled all over). Anyway, I also try to keep it simple and prepare whatever I can ahead. I also never turn down the offer if someone asks if they can bring something!

  8. P.S. Alisa, if you start something up again, I might be interested. Just depends what night, time, etc!!

  9. Thanks for the ideas, Laurie. You've got a new follower...especially after that yummy bread recipe :).
    We have a group of friends that gets together often and we like to keep things very casual. Many times we'll do a taco night: whoever hosts makes the meat and everyone else brings a taco topping.

    In the summer, if we host, we like to grill the meat and have everyone bring a side dish/salad. Less work for the hostess = more fun!
    Erin Henriksen

  10. I loved reading this post and especially the significance of it to me personally seeing as part of your little "extra" wedding gift to me, Laurie, consisted of these very two things - a candle centerpiece and a candy dish as a reminder to always be hospitable :)
    Although I've only done a little entertaining myself so far, I will say my two "must-haves" are as follows: 1) a yummy dessert accompanied by 2) a warm cup of coffee. Everyone loves dessert and I'm of the strict mindset that you cannot serve dinner (or any meal for that matter) without some form of dessert! It's the best end to a meal, too, because coffee and dessert keep good conversation flowing...sometimes for hours, which I love :) P.S. Make a full pot so there's plenty of free refills to go around (take that, Starbucks!)

  11. Hey Laurie! Fun challenge! I think all these are great ideas. I say for me, I always like to have something fun to drink. Whether it's yummy coffee, a fun cocktail, or an interesting blend of juice, I like to always have fun drinks around.

    I think too, that I LOVE informal - I love it when people feel like they can sit at a table, or on a couch, or on the floor, and that they can make my home their home... I never want them to feel like it's a museum and that they have to be oh-so-careful, but rather that they can kick their shoes off, talk, laugh, and enjoy!

  12. I like to serve soup and some ymmy bread when we have lunch or dinner guests. If they don't love the soup they can fill up on the bread. No one notices how much you do or don't eat. Plus the soup can be made ahead of time. It usually taste better if it seasons over night. Simple to serve so you can spend time with your guests, not stuck in the kitchen.

  13. You know you liked the "Bachelor Casserole". I can make some more and bring it the next time I come up. I'll double the recipe!

  14. we are a hospitality fam almost seem disappointed when it is just us at the dinner