Make Your Guest Feel At Home

Two years ago I did an entire series on how to be the best guest, along with an articles on how to host guests. As missionaries we are often guests at various houses, and last year we stayed with over 10 different families as we traveled around the United States. It was a blast, and all of hosts were amazing. Today I want to talk about a small trick that has made a huge difference for our guests at our place here in Athens.

There are three things that will make your guest feel more like they are at home, and they are affordable and easy to find, even if you don’t have a guest room.

make your guest feel at home

Three Easy Things You Can Provide Your Guest

1. A Storage Space

If you have a guest room, it is likely that you have a spare dresser for your guests, which is ideal. Living out of a suitcase can be exhausting. But what if you don’t have an extra room and your guest is sleeping on a fold out couch or on an air mattress? Well, you can still provide storage for them that can be easily stored away with a few different options. What we use is an Ikea Vessla. When guests are not here, we simply store it under another Vessla that we use in the living room for a few toys. Since we live in a small place, making sure we can put our storage container away (by hiding under a storage container that we always have out) is very important. This way our guest can unpack their suitcase, and have easy access to their clothes and other things. Ikea also sells a lid for this bin, and that is great because it provides a bit more privacy, and then you can also put items on top of the bin when it is not open.

2. A Laundry Hamper (or bag)

We use a Pasig storage bag to give to guests for their dirty laundry because it is lined with plastic inside, and is easy to fold up and store away when we no longer have guests. It can be a bummer to have to store your dirty laundry with your clean laundry (especially in your suitcase) because if you have something that is particularly dirty, it can stink up your clean clothes. Plus this is a great way for your guest to hand you all of their laundry without it feeling awkward if they are staying for an extended amount of time.

3. Bathroom Storage

We have an extra shower caddy for guests. This eliminates confusion over which bar of soap is theirs, along with a place for them to unpack their toiletries. Of course, it is also nice to save them some space on your bathroom counter, if you can. The more the are able to unpack their bag, the more at home they will feel, and this applies to bathroom toiletries as well.

Obviously, you can have all these things and still have a guest that does not feel welcome. The most important part of hosting any guest is to have an open and self-sacrificing heart. Let them know how happy you are to have them in your home verbally, but even more in your actions.

Happy hosting,

Kristin Spencer

The Most Annoying People on the Plane

This is a fun, and accurate representation of how there are different kinds of people that travel on airplanes. Notably, the annoying people on the plane. And it features one of my favorite actors, Sir Patrick Stewart. Thank you Jimmy Kimmel 🙂

I am also really glad that they didn’t make the whole thing about how annoying kids on flights are, for this reason. Enjoy!

Happy travels,

Kristin Spencer

Hoodsbee – Hoodies, Travel Pillows, Friends – All in One

Hoodsbee

The Hoodsbee really piqued my interest. The title for their product is, “The Hoodie That Becomes A Plush Toy.”

I haven’t been posting many Kickstarter campaigns on here because I am constantly bombarded with requests to let my readers (you lovely people!) know about various campaigns. But this one piqued my interest because I feel like it would actually be a great addition for my traveling arsenal! It is a stylish child’s hoodie that easily transforms into a pillow pal. I know my kids would use this in the car, on the train, or any other place they need to rest their heads. Please consider helping these awesome inventors out. You can get a Hoodsbee for a $30 backing, which is a really good price that is competitive with other plain hoodies out there. For more information check out their kickstarter here, and hurry because their campaign ends in 15 days.

Happy travels!!!

Kristin

Disclaimer: Although I have personally corresponded with an employee from the makers of the Hoodsbee and believe they fully intend to comply with their campaign, there have been recent campaigns where the company raises the funds and does not distribute the goods. Although this is rare, I feel it is my responsibility to share this with you.

A Traveling Lesson From Aesop

We have a book of Aesop’s Fables that we read to the girls every once in a while. There are some stories that I leave out, but one that has become particularly true in my life lately is the story called, “The Old Man, the Boy, and the Donkey.” It’s about a man and his son taking his donkey to the market. Along the way people keep complaining about the man, whether he is on the donkey, his son is on the donkey, both of them are riding him, or no one at all. Finally, him and his son pick up the donkey in a final attempt to please all of the grumbling people. While struggling to carry the donkey on a pole, the donkey falls off of a bridge and drowns. The moral of this story reads: “Please all, and you will please none.” In the end the donkey is lost, and still no one is pleased.

But this is travel blog, not a donkey or a literature blog, so let me get to my point in bringing this up in relation to travel. When you are traveling with others, especially your family, you need to take everyone’s opinion into account. I have talked about that before. But you also need to realize that you may not find a plan that is everyone’s favorite. That’s ok! You are the adult and ultimately the decision lies with you. Just remember that your job in life isn’t to make everyone happy, even on vacation. Do the best you can. That’s all you can do. And remember that in the end, it is the attitude of the participating family members or friends that will determine the amount of fun they have. When reading this fable by good ol’ Aesop, it is obvious that all of the grumbling people passing by were not having a good attitude about the man, his son, and the donkey. They were looking for a reason to complain, and there is nothing you can do to change that if someone has already determined to feel that way.

Keep in mind that figuring out the best travel plan for your group isn’t an exact science. Do your best to plan things out, and remember that you can’t please everyone 100% of the time.

Happy Travels!

Kristin