I firmly believe there’s a special place in hell for long-term house guests when you have small children. Don’t get me wrong, I love visitors, even overnight or weekend guests, but when you’re in survival mode, due to your babies still constantly waking in the night, the last thing you need is more living creatures in your house to worry about for weeks on end.
Hell, I can barely keep a pot plant alive at the moment, after caring for my one-year-old and two-year-old toddlers, my husband and myself. Who has the time or energy to cater to slovenly house guests from hell who treat your home like a holiday retreat for weeks on end? Benjamin Franklin was so on the money when he quipped: “Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.” Oh I hear you Benjamin, and I could not agree more.
So, what makes a good or bad house guest? How do you avoid committing house guest crimes against humanity?
House guest dos:
- Bring a small gift for your host, such as a bottle of nice red wine – it’s good manners and will sweeten your stay-over.
- Offer to help – especially if your host has small children. You don’t want to make her liken you to an adult toddler in her mind through your sheer laziness.
- Pay for dinner at least once, even if your good-natured hosts refuse. You don’t want to be a financial drain, after all.
House guest dont’s:
- Never stay in someone’s house for weeks on end. It’s just plain rude. Get a hotel room for at least some of the time instead, if you need somewhere long-term. Personally, I think a three-day stay-over is long enough – even if it’s your best friend.
- Your hosts’ couch is not your new abode – do not sit there all day. Good house guests go out into the world and make themselves scarce – they do not stare at a TV all day.
- Mind your manners – don’t do long and repeated bushies in the shower (this actually happened to me, with a house guest). Do your best, as a house guest, not to actively piss off your hosts with rude and discourteous behaviour such as leaving your towels on the floor, or dishes on the table and blocking access to the kitchen when there are ravenous, little children to feed.
Here endeth the rant.
By Nicole Carrington-Sima