Monday, December 18, 2017

5 Tips to Prepare Your Home for Holiday Guests

For many Filipino families, the holidays means loved ones visiting home from abroad. In my case, I’ve been seeing (or plan to see) a few friends based in the US or the UK, and it’s been wonderful. If you have family or friends coming over for get-togethers at your home or if some of them are actually staying for a weekend or for their whole vacation, here are a few ways to make their stay special.

1. Fill the guest room with love. 
Love not mess! An extra room, if you’re lucky to have one, is usually our tambakan. If your guests are staying there, please move all the musty boxes and old appliances to the garage, vacuum the floor, wipe down the walls, change the sheets, bring in the pillows, open the windows and air out the room (and change the curtains while you’re at it). If you want to be extra, get a few scented candles, bring in a potted plant, add a rug by the bed. You don’t need to buy these—I’m sure you have some lying around your house. Just move them to your guest room to make your visitors feel special.

2. Make the beddings super soft.
There is nothing so amazing after a long day than sinking into a bed that’s clean and the sheets are fragrant and buttery soft. Now, really nice bed linens are expensive. I’m lucky to have a few sets—check out old photos of my babies enjoying our luxe sheets!—but those are for my own bed (queen-sized). For our guest bed (a.k.a. the sofa haha), we have bedsheets that are twin size. They’re just normal thread count but I make them feel extra special by using fabric conditioner. Super simple tip, right?

3. Put a throw on the sofa.
If you don’t have an extra room and your guests will have to stay on your sofa, clean the sofa! People always forget to do this! Vacuum it to death, wipe it down with watered down bleach (if sofa is white) or fabric conditioner, and let it dry under the sun. In a condo like me? Turn the fan on full blast so your sofa will dry faster and it won’t smell kulob. I like to use the Parfum Collection of Downy, particularly the one in the gold bottle, Daring. I actually like Sweetheart better (pink bottle) but my kids like Daring so what can I do? Anyway, all of the variants smell fantastic so whatever you choose is a winner. 

If there are stains on your sofa that just can’t be removed, discover the magic of throws. A throw is a small blanket in a decorative design. It’s not a bed sheet or a comforter. You can drape this on your sofa (over the stains!) to make your living room cozy. 

4. Make the bathroom an experience.
This goes without saying—scrub that bathroom down! Don’t forget the mirror. Wipe the doorknob and light switch with alcohol. Move your toiletries to your bedroom (this is my own quirk because I don’t like other people sniffing my stuff or dipping their fingers in my creams hehe). Wipe down the shower stall or wash the shower curtains. Replace the bath mats with something that feels great on bare feet. Light up a scented candle. Make your towels fluffy. Very important! My pet peeve when I visit other people’s homes is rough towels!

When Vince and I were choosing items for our bridal registry more than a decade ago, we carefully picked the softest white towels we could find. When several guests gave us the same gift of towels, we didn’t exchange them at the store. Extra towels are always a must to a home! For a growing family, for a home that welcomes guests, an abundance of towels is amazing. When you have guests, make towels (face, hand and bath!) extra luxurious by washing them in bleach (if yours are white like ours) then rinsing them with your best-smelling fabric conditioner. I’m a Downy Antibac user but for special occasions, I bust out the Parfum Collection for sweet-smelling and super soft towels. 

Note: If your towels are colored, you can just use Downy Antibac! It kills germs, makes towels nice and soft, plus the Color Protection Technology will keep your towels looking new!

5. Prepare munchies.
When I’m a guest at other people’s houses, I always bring my own snacks. Two reasons: first, so that my host isn’t inconvenienced forever trying to feed me, and second, so that I won’t be a bad guest and rummage around my host’s kitchen when I get hungry in the middle of the night. Set aside a basket of snacks in your guest room or a jar of cookies on the dining room table or just a special cupboard in the kitchen for snacks. Tell your guest, “This is for you. Feel free to eat anytime!” 

You must’ve noticed that I’m really into making things super soft (this post was actually inspired by me doing the laundry—I get a lot of blogging ideas when I’m doing the laundry!). I’m a very tactile and sensual person and by sensual I mean my senses like to be stimulated. I touch things. I smell things. When a home smells clean and fragrant, when what I touch is soft, I feel happy. Special. That’s what I want my guests to feel when they’re at my home. If you have any tips on how you make your home special for your guests, please share in the comments! Happy holidays!

*This post is brought to you by Downy.


  1. Super helpful post. Me as a person, di ako magaling mag entertain ng guests be it relatives or other people so bawiin nalang sa preparation 😊😊 I love putting scented oils on top of a candle holder but I choose yung scent na hindi nakakaantok. 😀😀

  2. I did some of your tips during the holidays. Medyo matrabaho nga lang ang tanggalin lahat ng kalat from the extra room(being 7 months pregnant!), pero sulit naman. Our guests said they enjoyed the room at nag-abala pa daw akong maglagay ng snack box sa room. ;)

  3. Thanks for the tips Ms. Frances! I am am going to bear it in my mind those tips, even it's not holiday season.

  4. So trur momshie :) iba talaga kapag napakacomfortable ng mga bahay na pupuntahan :)

  5. Thank you for sharing 5 Tips to Prepare Your Home for Holiday Guests. I learn a lot for these tips. Super helpful for the next holiday events in our house.


Thanks for dropping by my blog! It really means a lot that you spare the time to read... and comment!