I know we’ve all been there. Company is coming and they are coming PRONTO. Really that is the story of our life. Dan and I realize that we may be free at 5pm, quick call people to hang out, and soon realize that we need to get the house “guest” ready. Or, someone calls and they are going to be over in 5 minutes. Honestly? When that first started to happen early on in our marriage, I would kinda freak out. Boy did I learn quickly! I soon realized that a house is supposed to be lived in, looked lived in, and it’s okay if it’s not in tip-top shape. I will never forget when one of our youth group kids came over one time. I will say our house is usually in order, but on that particular day, I was baking/cooking everything under the sun and the kitchen and dining table were a disaster. This person dropped by, walked in, and said he’d never seen our house such a disaster – yup, I agreed :). I have learned to be “okay” with what our house looks like when people come over at random. It’s not the house that I care about anymore – it’s all about who walks through our door. I’ve learned to put aside the thoughts of “what are they going to think of the dishes in the sink” and many more questions. But I will say I have learned to never let anything get too out of hand (which I usually didn’t let happen anyway), because then you are always semi-prepared.
So, I’m sure you’ve been there. WHERE TO START? Here are 10 things that I live by and do WEEKLY. I’ve had way too much practice :)…
1. Pick up. Just put things where they belong. I know that is a broad one, but it means something different for each household.
2. Wipe down the fixtures in the bathroom (faucet, sink, toilet, counter).
3. Vacuum – only vacuum the areas where people will be.
4. Wipe down fixtures in kitchen (sink and stove).
5. Pick up kitchen – this may mean do the dishes or put them away.
6. Put papers or “stuff” in one neat pile. Trust me, you can make a disaster look organized quickly by doing this!
7. Make sure you have a drink prepared- we are prepared for the next “Y2K” with our supply of Crystal Light!
8. Quickly check supply of snack foods – if you know you have something to offer, offer it. If you don’t, DO NOT WORRY ABOUT IT! Just don’t offer food then!
9. Take out garbage if needed.
10. Take a deep breath and remember that when people come over, it’s about the relationship, not if you may have forgotten to pick up that crumb on the floor. Trust me, 99.9% of the time, they won’t notice!
We are blessed, yes BLESSED, to live in a small house, where this does not take long at all. We (yes Dan is a HUGE help), have become pretty good at this. We LOVE having people over! We LOVE when people show up unexpectedly! Seriously! If we had to choose whether to go to a dinner and a movie vs. just hanging out with people at our house? We would choose the home – it’s just who we are.
I hope this helps the next time you have someone coming over pronto!