Hostesses With The Mostest > Entertaining and Hospitality

Hosting family from out of town for the first time

(1/3) > >>

lnwalker:
Hi Ehell community -

I have been a lurker for a long time and could use getting some advice from all you knowledgable ladies and gents.

I am in my mid-twenties and moved across the country to California about a year ago. My parents, adult brother, and young adult sister will be visiting my new city in a few months. This will be my first time hosting out-of-town visitors and especially since it's my family, I really want to show off my maturity a bit by being a gracious and welcoming host.

Since I have a small apartment and live with my boyfriend and two dogs, my parents and brother will be staying in a hotel. (Their idea, not mine - they booked it on their own before telling me and it was probably a good decision since my apartment is too small to sleep 6 adults and 2 dogs). My young adult (21 yrs) sister will be staying with my boyfriend and me at our place.

We have all agreed on a general plan for what we will do each day they are here (4 days) and it is mostly sight-seeing, beaches, and restaurants.  My brother has never been to my area of California before and my parents and sister have never been to California altogether! I am letting them plan most of the sight-seeing schedule but giving suggestions if asked.

What can I do to be a good host?

As far as food, I plan on picking up the tab for dinner out at least once throughout their stay, but probably can't afford to buy every meal out. I also plan on having lots of snacks and drinks at my place to keep everyone's tummies satisfied. One thing I am concerned about is that I eat very healthily and mostly vegan (although I do eat meat and cheese about once a week) and my family does not. I like the idea of cooking some of my favorite healthy meals and snacks for my family - both as a way to show off how good healthy food can be - but also because I feel like since they are visiting my home they should have the experience of "my" food. (It wouldn't be weird food like meat substitutes or fake cheese or even tofu - I'm talking about veggie and peanut stir fry, for example). But I also realize that this has the risk of totally blowing up and being unsatisfying for them all... thoughts? (Side note: I also would love to cook my family healthy food as a way to demonstrate how far I have come in the past year - I've lost almost 30 lbs and have totally transformed my health).

I know most of them will not be staying at my apartment but I still feel like I am the host of my city (and I'm sure they will come over at least once a day anyway).I will clean my house thoroughly before they arrive, at least, but any additional tips on housekeeping for someone who still has a college-like apartment?

Am I missing anything?

CrazyDaffodilLady:
Make sure there are clean guest towels and soap in the bathroom.  Also extra toilet paper.  I like to keep a spray deodorizer in there.

Have a variety of beverages available.  I don't use bottled water myself, but I have it for guests.

Bobbie:
Make sure your apartment smells great.  Its the first sense that people use as a first impression.  Have a fun time!!

peaches:

--- Quote from: lnwalker on April 21, 2014, 06:24:37 PM ---
As far as food, I plan on picking up the tab for dinner out at least once throughout their stay, but probably can't afford to buy every meal out. I also plan on having lots of snacks and drinks at my place to keep everyone's tummies satisfied. One thing I am concerned about is that I eat very healthily and mostly vegan (although I do eat meat and cheese about once a week) and my family does not. I like the idea of cooking some of my favorite healthy meals and snacks for my family - both as a way to show off how good healthy food can be - but also because I feel like since they are visiting my home they should have the experience of "my" food. (It wouldn't be weird food like meat substitutes or fake cheese or even tofu - I'm talking about veggie and peanut stir fry, for example). But I also realize that this has the risk of totally blowing up and being unsatisfying for them all... thoughts? (Side note: I also would love to cook my family healthy food as a way to demonstrate how far I have come in the past year - I've lost almost 30 lbs and have totally transformed my health).


--- End quote ---

I would be very careful here. Your relatives are coming to visit you - not Dr. Dean Ornish - and they're not coming for a health spa experience.

I would try to compromise on this issue. You could fix meals that incorporate a dish or two that you know they like, and also a healthy or vegan offering that you and your BF enjoy. For example, you could fix hamburgers, along with turkey burgers or tofu burgers.

Another approach is to fix a family favorite - say, pot roast - in a healthier way. Cooking Light has a lot of family favorite recipes made a bit lighter, but still recognizable.

Some meals, like roast chicken, span the traditional and the healthy.   

You don't have to abandon your convictions about eating, but at the same time, don't make your guests uncomfortable about theirs. They are entitled to live the way they want; they aren't a project. And a visit where you are extending hospitality isn't the time to impose a makeover on your guests.

They may notice you've lost weight and look wonderfully healthy, and they may want to know your secrets! I'd let them inquire if they're interested; I wouldn't foist my new philosophy on them.

I think it's great that you're so interesting in being a gracious host. Good luck to you!

Arila:
I think it's OK to have "your" snacks and food available at your house, but I wouldn't go on and on about how healthy it is or showing them that it can be tasty as well as good for you. Honestly, my aunt went vegan, (cousin paleo etc etc etc) and it's not the food that bothers me, it's the incessant sermonizing about it that drives me crazy!

I've changed my diet and lost a lot of weight, and I am really obsessive about it, but I'm really careful to keep my lips ZIPPED. If someone asks me about it, I will tell them about the program, but otherwise no one would know.


Don't be defensive, just be positive. "Do you guys want some snacks? I have carrots, and my favorite cookies" No need to modify that to "My favorite vegan, gluten and fat free cookies - don't worry, they taste GREAT and are healthy!""You must try them!""Try them!""Try my favorite cookies!""You'll never miss the real thing! Honest!"

Navigation

[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version