It’s officially November, and that means the holidays are coming up fast. This time of the year often gets so busy and chaotic that sometimes it ends up being more stressful than it is enjoyable. On top of the holiday cooking, party planning, and gift buying, many of us will be hosting out-of-town guests for at least a few days. This can add an extra element of stress, especially for those of us who also work full time.
So what do you do when you want your guests to be comfortable, but you barely have time to think about it? Well, I’ve created a list of simple ways to prepare your home for overnight guests. These are just a few super easy things you can do ahead of time to help put your mind at ease. They won’t take much time or effort on your part, but will mean the world to your guests.
I promise, you don’t need to slave over the stove or spends weeks cleaning the house. Sometimes the little things make all the difference. Run through this simple list of tips anytime you are planning to have overnight guests, and you’ll be all set!
Don’t forget to grab your FREE printable cleaning checklist at the end of this post!
1. Freezer Meals
Having a few pre-made freezer meals on hand is a great idea for dinners at your house. The last thing you want is to be stuck in the kitchen while you have a house full of guests. This is also a lifesaver on nights that you may have to work late. All you’ll have to do is stick it in the oven to bake. Easy as that! Having a few meals prepared means less time in the kitchen for you and more time to enjoy with your guests.
Lasagna, chili, casseroles, chicken or veggie pot pie, or mac & cheese all work great as freezer meals. Do a quick Pinterest search for freezer meal ideas – you’ll find tons of options!
2. Breakfast Staples
Whenever I have guests coming in, I like to have a variety of fend-for-yourself breakfast items on hand. That way, I don’t have to worry about waking up at the crack of dawn to start breakfast for everyone. A few easy breakfast items would include – bagels and cream cheese, eggs, muffins, pastries, cereal, oatmeal, toast, peanut butter, jams, fruit, milk, and juice.
If you want to prepare a special breakfast, try something like this french toast casserole from Lil Luna, which can be made the night before. All you have to do is pop it in the oven in the morning, and you’ll have a delicious homemade breakfast for everyone!
You could also try something like these freezer friendly breakfast burritos from The Country Cook. These can be made ahead of time and then stored in the freezer. Then your guests can simply heat one up in the microwave whenever they want.
3. Easy Snacks
For snacks, I like to keep things on hand that are portable, easy to grab, and don’t require any work. Fruit like bananas, clementines, grapes, and apples work well. Sliced cheese and crackers, veggies and dip, hummus, and grab bags of chips, pretzels, and popcorn are all great options. Store them in an easily accessible place and let everyone know where to find them so that they can help themselves to a snack whenever they feel hungry. For a homemade treat, try whipping up a batch of my favorite whole wheat chocolate chip cookies. They’re always a huge crowd pleaser!
It’s always nice to be able to offer your guests a cold or hot beverage when they arrive. You may want to stock up on some bottled water, iced tea, juice, soda, beer and wine, and of course, coffee. I don’t think my coffee pot ever stops running when we have guests! If you have the space, creating a little coffee station makes it easy for everyone to help themselves to coffee. Set out a few mugs, creamers, sugar, and cinnamon. Preset your coffee maker to start first thing in the morning, so even the earliest of risers will have freshly brewed coffee waiting for them when they wake up.
For the most part, your guests will probably bring everything they need, but it’s nice to have a few things on hand in case they forget something. I like to keep a little basket with a few essentials like shampoo, conditioner, tissues, extra toilet paper, toothpaste, and toothbrushes in each bathroom. I also make sure each bathroom is stocked with plenty of clean bath towels, hand towels, and wash cloths.
6. Comfortable Bedding
Make sure each bed has fresh linens for your guests. It’s also nice to leave out an extra blanket and pillow by each bed where guests will be sleeping, or maybe even a fan.
7. Clean Home
Okay, don’t feel like you have to break your back trying to clean every nook and cranny of your home. You have enough on your mind this time of year, and honestly, you’re probably the only one who would even notice that something wasn’t perfect. Try to carve out a few hours of your schedule, maybe one or two each week, leading up to the date that everyone arrives. Use this designated time to focus on cleaning a few areas. The most important rooms to focus on are bathrooms and bedrooms. The day before everyone arrives, do a quick once-over. Make sure everything is put away, beds are made, bathrooms are clean, and any pet hair or debris is vacuumed up. Just doing a few simple tasks like this will help ease your mind and make your house feel nice and tidy.
To make your life easier, I’ve created a simple cleaning checklist for you to follow anytime you’re planning to host overnight guests. This includes the main rooms you’ll want to focus on, and is easy to break up day by day if you wish. Use the form below to grab yours!
There’s no need to stress if you are hosting overnight guests this year. Just follow these few simple tips, and rest assured your guests will feel right at home.