Continuing in our theme of Hospitality we have compiled some practical tips that we utilize as we welcome guests into our homes. We hope you can find these ideas helpful as you extend Christ’s love via hospitality and find great joy in doing so!
Making Prep Easy
- When you prepare your own supper just double it. Freeze the second meal for company or use to drop off with someone who is having a hard week.
- Get kids involved – let them sweep, set the table, etc.
- Spend a rainy day baking with your kids. Stock up on brownies, cookies, bars, etc. and then pop them in your freezer for a night when you want to have someone over for coffee and dessert.
- Have a consistently free evening every week? Use this evening as a natural, built-in block of time to have people over so you don’t even have to think it through each week. Or perhaps, your husband is always gone a certain evening of the week or month. Use this evening as an opportunity to reach out to single girls or women.
- While it isn’t fancy, using paper plates, cups, and silverware is helpful, especially if there is a large group.
- Let guests help with clean up if they offer.
Making Food Easy
- Hospitality is more about the fellowship than the food, so find a meal (or a couple different meals) that is easy to prepare, as well as one that is well-liked by most people, and just always make that meal for company. Then, when you have company, you don’t have to stress about what to make–you already know!
- Find a meal that allows you to always have the ingredients on hand in the pantry (such as chili or spaghetti) so that you can easily be prepared for any last-minute company.
- Have a pancake dinner.
- Taco Bar or Potato Bar are great crowd pleasers- most of the topping for these meals can be chopped or prepared ahead of time and pulled out of the fridge just before serving.
- For a larger group on a Sunday afternoon do basic foods like ham, potatoes, green beans, rolls, etc. so that there isn’t much prep involved. Stick the items in the crockpot/oven and avoid the extra work of assembling something like a casserole. Use the saved time to clean up the house!
- Accept peoples offer to bring something and let them help in the kitchen. (Have them bring something that isn’t it a big deal if it’s forgotten like chips or a cold veggie.)
- Do evening get-togethers for just dessert and hot drinks or cheese/crackers/fruit, etc., and avoid the extra work of a full meal.
- Buy pizza!
- Have a family over and just eat watermelon in the backyard on a warm summer evening for a really simple treat!
- If a mom is over in the morning for a playdate make smoothies for an easy/refreshing drink for everyone!
Making Conversation Easy-
- Have some starter questions thought out ahead of time (I.e. What are your plans for this summer? What is something coming up that you are looking forward to? What do you enjoy most about your job? Etc.)
- Have a game sitting out as an option for something to do.
- Have some new library books picked out that your kids and their friends haven’t seen before or plan some activities that will help keep them busy and allow for meaningful conversations among the adults.
- Host a cookout. Kids are often happiest when outside with room to run and parents aren’t as stressed about keeping their kids from getting too loud or messy.
- See if your guests would enjoy going for a walk. This allows them to feel comfortable with silence in between conversations. Hospitality may feel very overwhelming but we hope that you will step out in faith and start right where you are, with whatever resources you have, and experience the blessing of serving others in your home!