simple & budget-friendly tips for hosting

we haven't always been the best at hosting. 

last year when rachel & her sweet husband came for a visit, luke ran into their car while pulling out of our driveway & caused some pretty serious damage. 

"hi, we just met you & we wrecked your car."


but we've always tried our best to make our guests feel at home. 

when we visited ashley's home last year, we were amazed by her natural knack for hosting. there was a little chalkboard at the entrance with a welcome greeting & her space was just so comfy.  she even left little mints on our pillows & a guest book for us to sign. 

i will forever remember that trip to ashley's home because her touches were simple & her home was authentic.

today i'm sharing some simple tips for hosting, inspired by our dear friend ashley & the lessons we've learned along the way, that we have implemented in our own home to make our guests feel special!

1. make sure your guest's space is clean & comfortable - this is a given, but we always wash the sheets & make the bed before guests arrive. even if you do not have a designated room for your guest, set out a pretty basket with clean linens & pillows next to the couch for your guests to see. i also light a candle & include a fresh bouquet of flowers in our guest room. 

2. always have budget-friendly, healthy snacks available - being on the road makes me grumpy & hangry. i like to have freshly popped popcorn, carrot sticks with hummus, salsa or pita chips available when our guests arrive. even if they don't need a snack right then, it's nice for our guests to have easy access when the munchies happen!  

3. make your guests feel special - earlier this year we painted a wall in our guest bedroom with chalkboard paint so we could write messages to our guests. it's been a hit! even if you don't have a chalkboard wall, pick up a small chalkboard from the thrift shop or craft store to write a sweet message to your guests. we have also adopted ashley's guest book idea & include a simple journal in our guest bedroom for guests to write a message about their stay just before leaving our home. 

4. include a little welcoming basket or a small gift - this gesture doesn't have to be elaborate, but if you have a bit of extra wiggle room in your budget, create a welcoming basket for your guests. i like to include local chocolates, soaps & coffee crafted from our town. if your guest is on a road trip & just stopping by, include snacks for the road. when our dear friend arrived with her three little boys, we gifted them a basket full of art supplies & simple toys to play with during their stay. 

5. share a cup of coffee or tea with your guests - our coffee bar is one of my favorite corners in our home because it allows us to host our guests effortlessly. they always know that they're free to grab a cup of coffee or mug of tea anytime. even if you don't have space for a coffee bar, include a hot water kettle on your stovetop with a basket of tea bags for your guests to freely enjoy. 

6. most importantly, be authentic & present. disconnect from your phone. enjoy a meal with your guests & indulge in a good glass of wine while sharing your lives with these special people. that's what it's really all about!

what are some of your tips for hosting guests? i'd love to read your ideas & traditions!


Lauren Hooker said...

You are so creative! I love these ideas, especially the guestbook. Thanks so much for sharing, Natalie!

Kaylan said...

so sweet, Natalie! When can I come over? :)

Aliesha Caldwell said...

I love all of these ideas, Natalie! Very sweet and thoughtful!

growntocook said...

Such lovely ideas! I love to entertain and do my best to make the guests feel welcome but it is a bit more difficult in our case since we do not have a designated guest bedroom. But I can definitely use some of your tips!

Helen said...

Love this!! We recently made over our guest room and now it's one of my favorite spaces in our house. Great ideas! :)

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