Five Simple Things To Do So You Don't Panic When Unexpected Company Knocks

We've all been there. Unexpected company...

You're lounging around on your day off and the door bell rings.  What do you do? Hide in the back room or begrudgingly answer the door hoping it’s the UPS guy with a package. Would you visit with your guests on the front porch or grab your purse like you're just running out the door?

I could never bring myself to hide from unexpected company but I have been guilty of entertaining them on the front porch a time or two. If I did invite them I’d spend most of the visit apologizing for the messy room or the fact I had nothing to offer in the way of refreshments.

I was convicted that I couldn't leave guests outside on the porch no matter how comfy it was nor spend the time pointing out the reasons I didn't appreciate the unannounced visit. Hey, it wasn't their fault I was still in my pajama or last night pizza box was on the coffee table but apologizing for these things let's your guest know that they came at the wrong time. 

I wanted to graciously welcome people in to my home but I needed a plan. So I came up with five simple things to make it easier to open the door and invite people in. These might help you too!

  • Don't get caught with your panties down. In other words I always try to be at least semi presentable when I'm at home. A nice bathrobe comes in handy;)
  • Always have at least one clear spot in the house to bring guests. In a perfect world we'd all have formal living rooms that sit idle just waiting for company. We don't live in a perfect world so set aside an area, even just a corner of the couch, and try to keep it picked up. If the house is messy I usually bring my guests to the kitchen table. There may be dirty dishes in the sink (evidence we eat well) but the table is usually cleared and there's a nice view of the backyard

  • Keep a few treats tucked away in the freezer. Well wrapped (and hidden from husband and kids) cookies, pound cake and quick bread will keep for several weeks in the freezer. If the freezer's bare a little fruit or even microwave popcorn will do the trick.
A simple plate of apples, golden raisins and almond butter served with a cup of tea
makes a nice snack for your guests.

  • Offer coffee, tea or a cool drink. It takes less than five minutes to make coffee or boil water for tea. Homemade lemonade is great but don't discount the value of a cold glass of water. 
  • Keep thy mouth shut about the condition of thy house! At times my house is messy. Toys on the floor, magazines and books stacked by the couch, dirty dishes in the sink. These things are all proof that people live here! Real people who can be really messy at times. Believe it or not your unexpected company probably left a messy house to come visit you. Stop apologizing and pay attention and enjoy your guests. 

So next time unexpected guests show up at your door put on a smile, invite them in, offer a little refreshments and a listening ear. That's what they'll remember. Not that they had to step over the laundry basket on the way in the door. 

I'm setting another plate at my table and making a place in my heart!

If you stopped by I'd love to hear from you. Leave me a little comment:-)

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  1. Dear Patti, I think this is so important, and really good tips and advice. Being ready and able to show hospitality is more important every year this world gets more non-connected through technology.
    I really appreciate your post. And I want to encourage you to not give up and continue to write what is in your heart on this very biblical subject. When I first started my blog it took years for it to gain any momentum.
    Blessings to you! Roxy

  2. Thank you so much Roxy! You are very sweet to encourage me. I'm trying to write about things that are on my heart and I hope to reach and encourage whoever might need it. So many people lead isolated lives it's really sad. Thanks for visiting.

  3. Quit apologizing is the best tip! Thanks for encouraging us to be hospitable regardless. I miss the days of drop-in guests. When I was young, it was equally acceptable to call or drop by.
    Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

    P.S. Do drop in!

  4. I think since so many have cell phones now not as many people just drop in. But it's good to be prepared. Thanks for dropping in!

  5. I think I would quite literally panic if someone dropped by unannounced although that doesn't happen very often in the age of texting and emails. However, I'm horrible about not being hospitable and making tons of excuses for it even given enough time to prepare for visitors. I love your site and am a new follower. I need so desperately this encouragement because fellowship is so important! Thanks!

  6. Hi Keri! I still have a few people who just drop in. Neighbors mostly. It doesn't happen as often now since most everyone has a cell phone. But even if you have an hour notice it can throw you for a loop:-) Thanks for visiting and I hope you'll come back.

  7. You have such great ideas when it come to hospitality. Always glad when I stop by your blog. :)


I'd love to hear from you!