How to Prepare for Overnight Guests

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Now that we are in November and just weeks away from Thanksgiving (my favorite holiday!!), I've started jotting down to-dos in preparation for our out-of-town guests. I want my guests to feel at home and comfortable in my space, which is why I always make it a point to prepare a few areas before they arrive so that I can focus on enjoying their company during their stay.

  1. Stock up on the basics. With more people in the house I know that we will be going through more food, toilet paper, sheets, towels, etc. than a typical week, which is why I try to get my Target run and linen closet laundry done a few days before our guests arrive. Keep the extra supplies where you know their needed (extra toilet paper in the bathroom, extra towels on the towel rack, etc.) so that your guests aren't relying on you to replenish the supplies or--even more frustrating--run out when in need.
  2. Create a storage plan. Whether you have a spare bedroom or are blowing up air mattresses for your guests to sleep on, remember that with each guest comes at least one bag of stuff. Figure out where that stuff is going to go before your guests arrive (a guest room, a hall closet, a corner of the basement, etc.) so that there is a dedicated spot for your guests to set up camp. Depending on the size of your place, you may need to rearrange some closets or move some furniture to make it work, but it's better to assign a spot in advance so that your guests can start getting settled and not have to worry about relocating their stuff later on. 
  3. Make it homey. I always stress the "make yourself at home" rule, but I like to take it one step further to force the point. Gestures like leaving a few empty hangers in the closet for guests to hang their clothes, a luggage rack to hold bags so they are off the floor, and a tray near their sleeping location to corral eye glasses, reading materials, or a beverage will give guests that "home away from home" experience.

Are you hosting overnight guests this season? How do you prepare for them? Here are some items we're eyeing: