Author Topic: Proper hostessing  (Read 5150 times)

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sparksals

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Proper hostessing
« on: February 04, 2007, 10:49:26 PM »
I was at a superbowl party today and I was mortified at the condition of the house in terms of cleanliness.  Now, I understand that the kitchen and sitting area can get messy with food, dishes, etc., while people are getting their snacks or putting their dishes in the sink.  No problem there.

What I do have a problem with is when the bathroom is not clean.  At this particular home, there were several wet face cloths on the sink, hair on the floor and general disarray in the only bathroom.

I was raised that whenever I have guests, my house is spotless, including the bathroom guests use, but I don't expect it to stay that way during the party.  I put out fresh towels, make sure the toilet is clean and disinfected as well as all countertops and the sink. 

Is this the norm when people with only one bathroom in the home have it in such disarray when guests come over?  I was truly disgusted. 
« Last Edit: February 04, 2007, 11:06:36 PM by sparksals »

Shoo

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2007, 10:56:48 PM »
The bathroom that guests will use is the FIRST room I clean when I'm having company.  I'm always very uncomfortable in someone's bathroom where there are used towels, clothing, make up, etc. lying all about.  It makes me feel like I'm intruding into their personal space.  Which I am, I know, but a good host will try to eliminate this, IMO.


pryncsskittyn

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2007, 08:34:04 AM »
Ugh, I think a bathroom tells alot about people.  If a host/hostess can not take the time to be sure their bathroom is friendly and welcoming for expected guests, I don't feel my presence is either appreciated or welcomed.  I don't want to be in my OWN bathroom if my DF or DS leave wet towels or clothes laying around, never mind toothpaste, hair or other disgusting things in the sink. Even if I'm rushed when guests are comming over, that room is the first thing I pick-up and clean up before they arrive.  Dirty dishes in the sink is understandable, even a little clutter on the table, but the batroom comes first to me.  But then, I tend to keep my house pretty tidy anyways, so clean up doesn't take long here.

Had I been in your position, I'd have felt pretty uncomfortable too!

sparksals

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2007, 01:15:57 PM »
I'm glad I'm not the only one.  I understand a house gets messy as the party wears on and even the bathroom can get so slightly with so many people using the towels. 

I always clean my entire house prior to guests, put out fresh towels in the bathroom and make sure it's spotless.  I also check it throughout the event to make sure it hasn't got messy and I usually give the toilet seat a wipe with a those disinfectant wipes. 

NYGirl100

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2007, 02:03:46 PM »
I agree that the bathroom should be clean if you're hosting a party.  I also clean everything top to bottom before any party, although if I don't have time to fully clean everything, I definitely clean the bathroom.  I would be uncomfortable using a bathroom like you described, too. 

kingsrings

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2007, 04:28:00 PM »
I can't imagine someone leaving their bathroom messy and disgusting when company comes over. Do you really want people to see your gross stuff? That is the room that I make sure is the most clean when people come over. And I also always leave a candle burning in the bathroom when I have guests over, too. Just for the sight of the pretty flame and the smell of the candle.  ;)

Shoo

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2007, 04:31:04 PM »
I also want to mention that I also make sure the other bathrooms in the house are clean, as well.  This is because when we are hosting several people, invariably someone needs to use a bathroom that has a little more privacy than the guest bathroom in the general living area.  So they end up going upstairs to use the bathroom.  I've been caught with a messy bedroom and bathroom before, so now I make sure the bed is at least made and the bathrooms are clean.

VorFemme

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2007, 10:37:26 PM »
Two story house (third time since we got married and fourth time *I* have lived in a two story house (first time I was six and it had two bathrooms - both on the first floor - as it was a "vintage" Victorian house).  The newer houses have had at least a powder room (toilet and sink) on the ground floor - which made it easier to get to the bathroom in a hurry.............

I try to keep the powder room (closest to the entry door) presentable at all times - with potpourri.  The bathrooms that are upstairs are less likely to be spit & polish clean due to being less likely to be in use by the casual visitor.  If I am expecting company - they are on the list of things to be checked FIRST - after the sheets for the guest bed and the towels for the guest bathroom have been tossed into the washer & dryer!

But *if the DH were to pull an impromptu invite for a casual evening - HE would be handed the toilet brush and cleaner while I pulled together a quick meal.  And the door to "family only" areas would be firmly shut.

He's done that two or three times in our marriage - and only once since we had kids...........so that is a pretty big *if.  But it is not impossible that the school aged family member could be followed home by a friend from school...........

(edited because I failed to run spell check before hitting post)
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Belle

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2007, 02:24:09 PM »
I was wondering about something similar this past week. I spent the night at my friends' (a couple's) house due to bad weather. (I did ask them if I could spend the night about 24 hours beforehand, knowing that a bad storm was coming that would shut down the roads.) I didn't expect them to entertain me, or to make sure everything was spic and span--I was grateful just to have a bed to sleep in.

But the place was a mess. I don't mean kind of cluttered. I mean the type of mess that could potentially grow into such a rip-roaring mess that the department of sanitation has to be called in to clean the house. (I am NOT exaggerating.) My friends have always been cluttered, but I have NEVER seen the place like this. Both kitchen sinks, all countertops in the kitchen, and the entire kitchen table were covered with dirty dishes (with food still in them). There were also random dishes throughout most of the house. 2/3rds of the couch was covered with laundry. I opened the fridge looking for ketchup, and there was food spilled EVERYWHERE. (Yes, most people have some food spillage in their fridge. But I'm talking about items that have been knocked over, spilling the food, and haven't even been uprighted yet, jars oozing with crud onto the shelves, etc. Nasty.) The doorway into the two bedrooms was cluttered with piles of junk, so you couldn't get in without walking on clutter. In order to close the blinds in the bedroom I had to step on piles of clutter, and then do a long stretch because the door blocked the window (but I couldn't move the door due to the piles of books and clothes and purses and stuff). I started to slip on stacks of paper at one point and thought I was going to topple into the bookcase. Although the sheets were supposedly clean, the bed was covered in piles of books and papers which I had to move onto the floor in order to get into the bed.

Now, again, I wasn't expecting a 5-star hotel, just someplace to crash. Although I did ask to spend the night (which typically is a no-no, but I was a bit trapped due to weather conditions, and I've known one of the two people for many years), when I spoke with friend she mentioned their place was dirty, but I didn't get the impression that they were uncomfortable with me staying there. (Maybe I'm just really clueless and I missed it. But really, I had several other friends I could have called if they weren't able to house me for the night.)

So, I was wondering where this falls in terms of rudeness. Should people clean up before they have guests that they have invited? Should people clean up before they have a guest (i.e., me) who is uninvited, but whom they have agreed to host? [If I'm threadjacking, let me know and I'll move this to a new thread.]

I felt a little miffed that friend didn't at least clean off the bed for me, but at the same time, I did ask to spend the night, and it was only 24 hours notice.  (I was also very disturbed by the appearance of the house--I've never seen anything like it, except in photos from a friend who used to work for the department of housing.)

P.S. Does anybody else ever hope that their friends don't lurk on this site and recognize a description of themselves???

kingsrings

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2007, 02:41:17 PM »
Belle-I think your friends place was unreasonably dirty, but I do wonder if they can be excused simply because they didn't have enough notice (nobody's fault) to clean the place up just a little bit. I'd just give them the benefit of the doubt on this one. One of my 4-H leader's place was like that, and it was like going through an obstacle course to move even a little bit because there was so much clutter everywhere, every place, be it the floor or the furniture. Not only it is unsightly and unsanitary, but it's very dangerous as well, especially as a fire risk. I really don't see how people can live like that. 

Belle

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2007, 02:47:01 PM »
Kingsrings--

That's kind of what I was thinking, as it wasn't really a planned visit. But, as I said, I was a little miffed that they didn't even clean the piles off the bed (which only took me about 60 seconds). Then again, maybe once your house gets to that point you've ceased to really see it as a mess? It was just an odd situation to me--I felt very uninvited, but at the same time I WAS uninvited, so I wasn't sure that I had any right to feel that way.


pryncsskittyn

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #11 on: February 10, 2007, 03:15:31 PM »
Belle,  Had I been a person living like that, I'd NEVER allow people in my home, not even uninvited guests.  I feel they could have said no, or at least hinted, "well, I think you might be more comfotable at a hotel, my house is a mess right now" 
The house you described is a fire hazard, department of Housing (that's what it's called in my area) would have given them 10 days to clean the mess or condemned it and had an outside party come in and clean it, much more important, the insurance carrier on the house would have been notified and insurance premiums raised or just plain dropped the client.  I know this because I've seen it happen (not to me, I'd die before I allowed my home to get to that point). 

I feel that if they accepted, the least they could do is warn you, and possibly clear off the bed for you.

Twik

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2007, 09:21:11 PM »
As a self-proclaimed Messy Person, it's amazing how often I can walk around, or over, or through a mess before it actually strikes me that I should do something about it. It's like the messes have their own little SEP fields going.

So, I think the answer is your friends are used to the conditions, and really didn't understand that they needed to do a little tidying.
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sparksals

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2007, 09:49:08 PM »
Twik - what would you define as messy?  There were hairs scattered on the bathroom floor, two or three used washcloths sitting on the bathroom sink, the hand towel was filthy and there was crap all over the small vanity/sink area. 

megswsu

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Re: Proper hostessing
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2007, 12:13:03 PM »
Quote
What I do have a problem with is when the bathroom is not clean.  At this particular home, there were several wet face cloths on the sink, hair on the floor and general disarray in the only bathroom.

Uggg. Dirty bathrooms are my pet peeve. Even if someone comes by on short notice, I ALWAYS go in there to make sure it's tidied up. I can't stand going into someone's bathroom and it's dirty. Yuck!  :P