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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

House Guests....if only I was a gracious hostess!

I'm pretending I'm in my bedroom working on a client's file just so I can get a quick break from entertaining our house guest.  I should probably feel guilty but I don't and since I don't want to go back out to the living room, I'm going to rant a bit!

I almost always think company should stay at a hotel.  Isn't that awful of me?  But when I visit my in-laws we stay at hotels.  It's something about having to be "on" from the minute you wake up to the minute you go to bed that just rattles my nerves.  Exceptions are my best friends and my sister.  I love spending time with them and losing track of time and saying at midnight that you really need to get to bed!  Other house guests, it's like 6:30pm and you are already watching the clock for it to become an appropriate time to announce you are just "so tired, better hit the hay!" 

And when you/they stay at a hotel, you almost always skip the first morning food talk about what to have, can I make you a cup of coffee, pardon me I'm going to go take a shower (and I admittedly always take an hour to get ready with shower, makeup, blow dry and straighten my hair and ironing my clothes, it's been this way since junior high) and I'll probably be MIA for at least an hour and I don't want to hear you give me a hard time and tell me I should just skip the makeup.

Then there is the part where my company doesn't bother to rinse plates, help load the dishwasher, prep dinner (you know, help cut veggies, shred cheese, etc.) that REALLY gets to me!  I'm not saying I need a housekeeper and cook for a week, but help out darn it!  And don't ask "do you need help?"  Crap, I have a one and two year old, I work full time, and have a messy husband, did that question need to be asked?  If you are my house guest, can you just say you'll unload the dishwasher, or set the table, or rinse the dinner dishes off, put food items away after dinner and just do it so it's not that awkwardness where I tell you to just relax, I got it. 

If the majority of meals are made at my house, which they are and I 90% of the time cook from scratch and you haven't helped out with groceries, when we are out to eat, why not offer to pay the tab?  Oh man, that's really selfish of me to even say that huh?  But unless I BEG for you to come visit me and I know that you are on a tight budget, your vacation is not an opportunity for my family to wine, dine, and entertain you.  It's to enjoy each other's company but that's hard to do when I'm cooking you 3 meals a day and cleaning up after you for a week!

Rent a car.  Unless you are in a super busy city, rent a car.  Save the money before you plan your vacation and take breaks to go do your own thing even if it's only for a couple hours.  It gives everyone time to breathe.  I'd say our guests can take one of our cars, but with DH working nights and going to school full time, that just doesn't work for us right now.

Finally, respect the kids' schedules.  Some kids go with the flow and are not on a set routine.  My kids aren't.  It will take you all of about 6 hours before you realize this.  When my kids go to bed at 7, please don't feel the need to talk loud for 2 hours straight or crank the volume on my TV up.  Maybe after the 5th time you saw me have to walk upstairs and put one of the boys back to bed because they can't get to sleep, you would have thought 'maybe I am being too loud?'  Again, another reason to rent a hotel room.  Also realize that not all toddlers want to go on several hour long road trips several times during your stay.  My boys like to play, run around, take naps in their beds, and it's really difficult to do this when we are jammed packed into my car all week long.

Okay, I'm I going to go down as the worst  daughter-in-law, nephew's wife, etc. in history?  Probably.  But I've realized this week how much I do not like having guests stay at my house....okay, let's just be honest, my husband's family at my house.  I could write for days about all the horror stories of my MIL's stays at our house but I've ranted long enough so I'll end it here!


  1. I feel EXACTLY the same way about guests (family especially;-) Some people are just not good guests and expect that since they are on vacation then it is your honor to make their stay magical. If people were more considerqate when they stayed at another person's home then that would be a different story. But since that never seems to happen anymore, then I completely agree with every word you said!

  2. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your sweet honesty. Nice tips! :-)

  3. The house guest did leave me a very sweet note in the guest bedroom after they left. It's nice to hear thank you, maybe I'm very needy in that way, but I say it often to people and I like that other people realize it's still the right thing to say!

  4. Brandi,
    How are you? I loved this post, it was so funny. I love your honesty! I'd like to update you but I dont want to post a comment, lol
    and no we're not pregnant :) Here's my email address, vicksgirl78@gmail.com

  5. I agree with you. I cringe when my mom's brother and his family visit. They act like their better than everyone especially his wife and youngest daughter. My aunt hasn't visited our family (including her mother in law who was not the typical mean mil) since 2003.

    So my grandmother died in July so that brought them out. They made everything out to be about them. Their oldest daughter's divorce (met the guy and got pregnant the week they met plus he was married to another girl nope didn't see this coming)

    My biggest problem was the youngest daughter who is currently pregnant with her second child a boy. My daughter died in May and we were due around the same time. She popped her top up "look at my baby belly" later on at dinner she started talking about poop. I was like ewww not while we're eating. and she replied "your not a mom you don't have kids you don't understand". Yes that's what I'd say to someone who's lost two babies and has tried to have kids for 6 years.

    The whole week she'd gripe about how she can't wait to have her body back, how the factory is closed, this is the last one. Especially at grandma's funeral.

    She also made fun of the flatware my sister has which is just your run of the mill flatware from target. Why don't you have this why don't you have that? My sister is very successful RN. She has a wonderfully spacious home.

    What does my cousin have? A house her husband's grandmother bought them. Her husband is a loser who's had 3 duis to date so he lost his CDL license and now their on welfare and food stamps because he doesn't make enough at his present job. But they also have the newest Iphones with top of the line plans yet they need the governments help?

    Don't get me wrong I believe when someone needs help they should get it but with everything they have I don't believe they need help. They also have borders and they haven't reported that as income.

    At any rate M won't be welcome in my home again.