In the Company of ... Company
I once read an article about how to be a good hostess to overnight guests. And I still remember the accompanying pictures: a cozy, inviting, perfectly appointed guest room with crisp linens and a little vase of flowers on the nightstand. The article talked about how you should always put a stack of clean towels in said guest room. And how you should put together a little basket with things your guest might want - a bottle of water, a light snack, a crossword puzzle, yada yada yada. And I was determined, reading that article at the ripe old age of eighteen or so, that I would always give my guests that sort of VIP treatment.
Fast-forward a few years and a few kids. You wanna know what it's like to be a guest at my house? Let me give you a little taste.
-First of all, there is no guest room. We've got too many kids to have extra rooms - which is why my computer is in the corner of the friggin' dining room instead of in its own private office.
-Secondly, even if there were a guest room, there would be no flowers on the nightstand. Why? Because there would be no nightstand. I don't even have a nightstand of my own ... or a headboard for that matter. There is no furniture to speak of in our bedroom except for our headboard-less bed and a crappy particleboard bookshelf that we bought on clearance at Target. So there will be no other room getting good furniture until I myself receive good furniture.
-You've got a choice of where to sleep: the couch, the kids' bunk bed, or the air mattress. The couch is comfy, but you'll likely be accosted by the dog and two cats. They're used to sleeping there. ... Don't look at me like that! I used a lint roller and Febreze!
-Your bedding? That would be the decorative striped pillows from my sons' beds and the "bed-in-a-bag" Elmo comforter that Colin had when he was two.
-Your towels? We've got green, pink, black, or burgundy - take your pick. Some are from like 1998 when I went off to
-I'll make you a lovely breakfast in the morning. Probably cinnamon rolls out of a can.
It's pathetic, really, how far my lofty goal of VIP guest treatment has fallen. But these days, my ideal of successful hosting is keeping pants on my kids in the presence of company. Which is why I'm sooooo glad that the "company" I'm expecting is my sister, Amy (shown below, being forced by yours truly to do the YMCA. You can't tell, but it was at gunpoint).
Amy is one of the handful of people who I know genuinely won't care that they're going to have to fetch their own drinks and that my "table linens" are really paper towels. And best of all, she's down with the clerty, which makes things a whole hell of a lot easier on me.