Thursday, August 11, 2011

Hospitable

gorgeous print via

A few years ago I made the goal to entertain every month that year, and I've pretty well kept it up since then.  I love having friends over and planning get-togethers.  The problem is that I often get so caught up in the getting ready that my stress level escalates and by the time I'm supposed to be enjoying my company, I'm exhausted.  It's gotten better as time has gone on, but I've also learned to let some things go.

Yesterday we had an impromptu play-date, and I hadn't had time to give the house a good once-over before the guests arrived because we got to my house at the same time.  The kids had fun spending time on the swing set and playing with toys.  My friend and I had a good visit.  I fed the kids fast quesadillas and pulled out (slightly wilted) leftover salad for lunch.  Thinking back, I'm embarrassed that I served my guest my leftovers, but it was what I was planning to eat for lunch.  I think (at least I hope) that my friends didn't go home disgusted by my dirty floors and leftovers lunch, but instead happy after fun chatting and kids playing.

Last night a friend from high school and her husband came over and stayed the night en route to the Grand Canyon.  I decided to remedy the dirty floors from earlier in the day, so since my efforts were spent cleaning I opted for an easy pizza dinner.  This morning I realized I forgot to get out the guest towels last night (they found them just fine on their own) and I forgot to hang the shower curtain liner (the fabric curtain is slightly damp).  I enjoyed catching up last night and chatting over waffles this morning, and I'm hopeful their memories will be focused on our time together instead of on soggy shower curtains and looking for towels. 

I've come to realize over the years that having friends over is about the people.  If I waited until my house was perfectly decorated, I'd never have guests.  If I made it a pre-requisite that every surface sparkle before friends could come over, they would never come.  If 10-course meals needed to be planned before having a dinner party, I'd never have them.  But I have never left a gathering of friends talking about the amount of dust or the food that could have better complimented the meal.  When I go to a friend's, I'm always happy in the being together, and I hope I've created that same experience for the friends that come to my home (dust be darned!).  

we just look so welcoming, right?  photo by Melissa


5 comments:

Hannah said...

You are the perfect hostess, Christina! You house is welcoming, especially when it isn't in perfect order. And...about the leftovers...I'm still thinking about them. It is on my to-make list. I loved it! I'll eat your leftovers any day.

Alison Alleman said...

Couldn't agree more. And my philosophy is that if your house is sparkling, you just make your guests feel bad that their own house isn't sparkling. And you wouldn't want to make your guests feel bad, right?

Jocelyn Christensen said...

I've totally had to accept that over the last two years or so. I almost found that people were MORE comfortable in my house if it was a little bit dirty! Hee hee...what a relief!

Hey, Christina...Your husband is TALLLLLL :) And handsome...what a beautiful family. And I'm glad you've put your photo on the blog now so I can look atcha! :)

lori said...

Sweet Christina, I'm just getting back to semi-regular blog reading and found the post you wrote after Wes's passing. I was so touched by your kind words. Do you mind if we add your thoughts to the memorial blog we're compiling? We're hoping to make it as all inclusive as possible so we can print it off as a keepsake for our children.

You and your family are beautiful and I loved this most current post. Life IS about family and friends and love. We shouldn't put those things off because of perfectionism. Great reminder. Your blog is just lovely, I'm glad to find my way over.

Much love and many thanks to you!

Amber said...

Funny, I had already forgotten about the towels and the shower curtain. The showers we had for the next 2 weeks were in a river and stepping out onto sand and drying by hot wind, so we were in the lap of luxury at your house. Thanks for letting us call you and come by any old time.