Monday, May 21, 2018

Be Our Guest?

BREAKING NEWS: Hank's TRUST ME is a Book Bub's  Biggest Thrillers Coming Out Summer 2018! YAY! With Megan Abbott, Lisa Scottoline, Daniel Silva, B. A. Paris and Sandra Brown!  (Oh, and Bill Clinton with James Patterson.) Yay!

And Suspense Magazine says: TRUST ME  is "without a doubt, one of the best thrillers I've read in years."


And now back to our regular programming.



HANK PHILLIPPI RYANDoes it fill you with delight or dread?  Does it make you wish you didn't have the extra bedroom--or wish you had a few more?  We're having some wonderful guests here at JRW this week, hurray. And that got me thinking about visitors. Overnight guests.  At home.  And that is a different matter.

When guests arrived at Downton Abbey, it was an easier time. For Cora Grantham, at least if not for the staff. There were rooms and privacy, and there was staff, and somehow fresh flowers and food and clean sheets all happened seamlessly.


These days, having guests is a little more---fraught. I love to have people stay over, it's fabulous, but when it gets right down to it, I'm so eager to make sure that everything is absolutely perfect that it's a little nerve-wracking. It's silly, I know. When I stay at other people's homes, I don't care what anything looks like or whether it the cleaning staff (ha!) has done a good job. It's a friend's house, whatever! And I am touched by the hospitality.


But when people come here? Yeesh. Truly, I want to paint the bathroom. I have to stash the stacks of to-be-read New Yorkers. Will the guest want room-temp bottled bottles of water, or cold, or will they be aghast that we have individual plastic bottles of water? 



What if they're hungry in the night? What if they're allergic to the detergent I wash the sheets in?  What if they want to stay up really late/go to sleep really early and are hesitant to tell me that?  We have enough bathrooms, thank goodness.  

 (But once, a visiting relative's son thought it would be better NOT to tell me the toilet was overflowing on the third floor. He apparently thought it would just fix itself. I only found out about it when an absolute torrent of water began to gush into the second floor hallway below. The paint is still peeling and ruined from that. I stolidly ignore it.) 


And see? A guest would notice that! 


So how about you, Reds and readers? Is it open house at your house--or would you rather say: look! A lovely hotel is right down the street! 

(Not Hank's house)

HALLIE EPHRON: Definitely, open house! I love having guests, and yes, it's like having a cleaning person. It makes you straighten up in advance because for a nanosecond, you SEE those old newspapers and the crud that's accumulated between the sink and counter and... I also stock the fridge.  Make the beds. Put out fresh towels. Wipe the window sills. It's a win win. 

LUCY BURDETTE I have stayed plenty of nights at Hallie's house and the food is always excellent:). And there's coffee in the morning, and great conversation, and comfortable beds--what else could a person want? But I do understand the urge to fix things up. We will be having lots of company this summer, and all in small stretches. So I did buy some new pillows and already thinking about recipes. Our worst problem right now is that a yellow jacket nest was built somewhere in the house and they emerged by the dozens in the guest room last summer. Can you imagine? "You'll be staying in the yellow jacket suite this evening. Here are your bee suits..." That must be fixed!



not Rhys
RHYS BOWEN: Okay, confession time. Who else cleans up before the cleaning person comes? I don't want her to see a messy house! I love having guests. We have plenty of room and there are always two bedrooms ready and made up, so it's not too much of a chore. And the guest bathroom isn't used much between visits. These days it's only family who visit and they aren't too critical. The only time it's a bit much is when the whole family is here. We've had 16 people in the house for Christmas and that was a tad stressful. John would make three runs on the supermarket in a day. "What do we need?" he'd ask. "Milk and bread," I'd say. And he'd say "I bought those this morning," and I'd reply, 'Milk and bread."

INGRID THOFT: Since I like things to be tidy in general, it’s not usually a mad dash to get things ready, but am I the only one who thinks it depends on the guest?  Some guests are lovely and thoughtful, and it’s a pleasure to welcome them.   But some potential guests are best steered to a hotel, which in our case is only a block away.  The critical ones—the ones who might be displeased by the temperature of their bottled water (seriously, Hank, you’re too kind!)—really would be better served by a professional staff.  Good guests are the best, however.  Just a couple of weeks ago, one of my sisters and one of my nieces stayed with us, and it was fabulous.  We saw the sights, ate, and watched a “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” marathon.  Bliss!



JENN McKINLAY: I live in a frat house. If you’re coming to stay with me, you need to know that up front. Guitars, dirty socks, and sports equipment are everywhere. It is very loud with yelling, random wrestling, and pranks, oh, the pranks. My mom just stayed with us for a week. She loves her grandsons to pieces but upon leaving she looked ready for some peace and quiet. Visiting me is not for the fussy, so if your guests stay too long, I can send the Hooligans to help you out. No charge.

DEBORAH CROMBIE:  I'm with Rhys--I clean up for the house cleaner. But sixteen people in the house would give me nervous breakdown!


I do love having guests, and we have a separate guest room that can be closed on one side so that it's "en suite." But, like Hank, I want everything to be perfect, which means I notice all the flaws. (Yes, the bathroom needs painting, I'm sure it does.)


 
Not Debs' cat
And then there are the cats. The cats really, really like the guest room. It's in the front of the house with a window that overlooks the bird bath. Kitty TV! So even if the guest is not allergic to cats, I don't think that they want cat hair everywhere. So I usually do lots of cleaning, and then I need to go stay in a hotel!


JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING:
I don't have many overnight guests, other than the occasional family members, who pretty much get what they see. I mean, I make sure there's clean linen on the beds and towels and water on the bedside table (Hank, do bottled and make a donation to the World Wildlife Fund.) I'm not that far removed from Jenn's hooligan days, so my most frequent overnight visitors have been kids' friends sleeping over- and who's going to worry about what someone under 25 thinks of your housekeeping?


The impulse is real, though. Back in the day, I worked part-time for a wallpaper store - we had everything you needed to cover your walls, and we hired out folks to do it for the non-handy customers. I was amazed to find that November and December were the busiest time of the year. Who goes Christmas shopping for wallpaper? But, no, this was for home beautification. It turned out hundreds of people every year, faced with Thanksgiving or Hanukkah or Christmas guests, thought it was the perfect time to renovate the bathroom or redecorate the guest bedroom. 


I personally go with my mother's entertaining advice: if you keep the drinks flowing, no one will notice what the house looks like.


HANK: So, Reds and readers--can we come over? How do you feel about house guests--y'all come? Or...what's that saying about fish and houseguests? (And yes, I clean up for the housekeeper. Do you?)






Copyright: jackf / 123RF Stock Photo

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Copyright: fotomandm / 123RF Stock Photo

70 comments:

  1. Congratulations, Hank! That’s exciting news . . . I absolutely cannot wait to read “Trust Me” . . . .

    We do the housekeeping ourselves, but if I had a housekeeper, I’d definitely be cleaning up for her.

    We have two extra rooms [which came in handy when two of our grandchildren lived here for a year], so we don’t fret when guests are on the way. [Usually it’s family, and that’s always special.] We make a valiant effort to have everything clean and relatively neat, but there’s really no place to stash all the books [and since everyone is used to seeing them around, they’d wonder what in the world I did with them, anyway]. So, if you don’t mind a bookcase or two full of books in your room, we have an open door, a warm welcome, and a place for you to hang your hat . . . .

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    1. Oh, well, bookcases! Of course! But I look at that as the best kind of decorating, don’t you?

      ( thank you for the kind words! If any of you are not on my mailing list, now’s the time! We are about to have a special offer to get early access— so email me your address via my website.

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  2. First off, congratulations Hank! Not that these acknowledgements are necessary to make me want to read Trust Me since I'm already eagerly awaiting the release date but it is nice to see others as excited for the book.

    I'm sure I'd love you all dearly, but if we are being honest, find a hotel. I like to come home and only have to worry about me, not "entertaining" others for a period longer than it takes to order dinner at a restaurant. And it is the same in reverse (for the most part), I'd rather stay at a hotel rather than put someone else out by having to deal with me.

    By the way, for any of the JRW bloggers or commenters on or near Cape Cod this week, authors Edith Maxwell, Barbara Ross and Sheila Connolly will be doing a talk/signing at the West Falmouth Library (575 West Falmouth Highway, West Falmouth MA) on Thursday May 24th starting at 4pm. I am planning on going and I think it would be nice to have a turnout of JRW people if they are in the area.

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    1. Good point, Jay! Yes, I’d rather stay in a hotel to, usually, but sometimes that feels ungrateful, you know? But I really think it makes everyone more comfortable… But, who knows!
      And aww, thank you! Let me know if you want to be on the mailing list!

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    2. Mailing list? There's a mailing list?

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  3. Congratulations Hank! Cannot wait to get my hands on this book! Wish I could get to Cape Cod this week, it appears that spring and summer are finally coming!

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    1. Your book, and Rhys’, publishes first! Big party in Boston on August 8, right?

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  4. I've read it - so na, na, na-na na!! It's fabulous fabulous fabulous.
    Wish I could get to the Cape for Edith, Barbara, and Sheila. I'll be there in spirit.

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  5. AND this comes from Jim Collins - "I've done something to break my Blogger account, and something is keeping me from posting on JRW with my Google account, and I haven't yet found or made time to fix it. So please add a comment for me somewhere expressing my gratitude for the good wishes that some posters passed on. The idea of being a guest on the site is quite exciting. I'll remember that when I get stuck and don't feel like writing."
    We'll be waiting for you, Jim!

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  6. We rarely have guests but I’d dearly love to have someone come in and clean on a regular basis. Cleaning services are hard to find in my part of rural Maine.

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    1. Oh, really? You are that group? Where exactly? Yes, it is quite a treat…

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  7. Congrats to Hank!

    We've lived in some popular destinations: SF area, LA, and Atlanta. I had the house guest routine down pat, especially for college students driving through Atlanta. Cleveland and Cincinnati, very few visitors.

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    1. What is your guest secret? Any tips?

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    2. for my kids, a complete set of toiletries so they don't have to haul contact lens solution and moisturizer in a carry-on. Stacks of towels, extra blankets, sturdy wooden coat hangers, Kleenex, drinking glasses. Buffet breakfast with cereal, fruit, and eggs cooked to order.

      And after one guest had to take a bath because she couldn't figure out how to operate the shower, an index card with that information left on the guest bathroom sink.

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  8. Thank you! Yes, it’s very exciting… But you never know. It is very very reassuring that people are like that, and we shall see.

    Do you all clean up like crazy? That’s so silly I know... Do you make special food? Or do you go out to have meals? I always have tons of leftover food when the guests leave, because I’m always trying to make sure they have whatever they need. Then I wind up with all kinds of stuff…

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    1. If someone is staying more than one night I'll manage at least one big dinner, but there are so many great places to eat in Cincinnati, and I enjoy taking people to them, too.

      And if a guest has never been to my jewel of a town, I'll do the "ten-dollar" tour, pointing out the seven hills and as many beauty spots as I can. Cincinnati is highly underrated for its architecture, parks, the Ohio River vistas, and its lush green rolling landscape.

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  9. Yes, I am not sure what I would do without the cleaning person. They come on Friday, and roar through the house, and it is such an absolute joy.
    I do cleanup for them, though, because my work filing system consists of putting stuff on the study floor.

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  10. Ingrid, you are not the only one. It truly does depend on the guest.

    I like guests. But I have a small house. Three bedrooms and they are all filled (mine, The Girl, The Boy). Now next year, when The Girl leaves for college (even though she's only going 10 miles away), I'll have a guest room and that will be cool. Until then, well, if you don't mind sleeping on the recliner in the den. Or it might be warm enough to roll out the futon in the basement.

    However. I also firmly believe in the saying "Fish and visitors stink after three days." Love the company, but I love the relative peace and quiet of my home, too!

    Mary/Liz

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    1. Oh, and congratulations, Hank! Can't wait to get my mitts on TRUST ME!

      Mary/Liz

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    2. Thanks, Mary! Natalie Sacco of Mystery Lovers Bookshop has a blurb on the ARC cover--she loved it!SO I hope I i will be coming to visit.

      OH!I don't mean visit-visit--I do not have my eye on your guest room! I cannot believe TheGirl is going to college. Amazing.

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    3. Oh Hank, you would be MORE THAN WELCOME to visit! And I'd love to see you at Mystery Lovers on tour.

      Yeah, college. And The Boy will be a junior in high school. Mind. Blown. I am not ready.

      Mary/Liz

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  11. Trust Me!! And other Reds books to come. It's nice to know there will be rewards for the patient this summer.

    When Steve and I got married 36 years ago he was the chairman of the speakers' committee for the local Audubon Society, for whom he traveled for nearly 25 years. As the chairman, he wanted to host the visiting speakers, many of whom he knew as longtime friends. So I became the hostess for a diverse group, mostly men, from all over the States and several other countries: England, Germany, Canada, South Africa, Australia. (Most guests were great, but there were a couple of outstanding stinkers.)

    Over the years I figured out a lot of tricks to make guests' stays go more smoothly for all concerned. We have always been lucky enough to have two main bathrooms, which is key. I figure out coffee/tea/other morning needs the night before and get it set up ahead of time.

    Now we mostly just have our three daughters staying, since none of them live here in town. It can be a challenge during the holidays, especially if significant others/children are in tow. Last year, too, my best childhood friend came and stayed from San Diego, and a couple I met on the Lipstick Chronicles (Al S) stopped over a couple nights on the their way cross-country from Colorado. It's easier if only one guest bedroom is needed!

    Designing the new house was fun, since I'm incorporating guest spaces that are away from our own daily living space. Two bedrooms upstairs, and a couple rooms in the walkout basement that can be used for guests. Lots of flexible options in addition to comfy queen beds, too: pull-out sofa bed, daybed that can be used as a spare twin, and even a pull-out chair that makes into a twin bed.

    I'll be ready. Maybe everyone could come here for a visit? Bring wine!

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    1. YES! Two bathrooms. The bathroom thing is incredibly awkward. Especially since there are peak hours, and the incredible impossible middle-of-the-night situation.
      We have a third floor with a separate entrance and kitchen and bathroom, so that makes life much easier. When the baby children come, they can have privacy, too, and that makes such a difference.
      ANd you are a SAINT. I would go nuts if I'd had to host all those people. Truly.
      ANd interestingly, now that I think about it, if you can get a buffet thing going, where people feel free to get things themselves, it makes it so much easier!

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    2. I have stayed at Hank and Jonathan's and can attest to their premium guest quarters. I had the whole third floor to myself, with a bathroom, a coffee/tea station, and enough books to keep my occupied for several months. Loved it! Thanks, Hank!

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    3. That's the situation we'll have with our walkout lower level, too, and with access to a hot water pot/coffeemaker. I have visited friends with such accommodations, and it is just so much nicer to feel as though you're not imposing on a host who might sleep later, or whatever.

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  12. Congratulations, Hank! Looking forward to reading TRUST ME!

    I'm pretty solidly in the "it depends on the guest" column. We live in Columbus, Ohio, and one of Bob's brothers is an OSU alumni who gets tickets to one football game each fall. So he is an annual house guest (sometimes accompanied by his wife, other years not.) We all know the drill so well that it is stress free. The same is largely true of my sister, who stays a few times a year.

    I do enjoy entertaining, and when we were younger I had much more of an open door policy. I have always felt the need to clean like a maniac before the guests arrive, but it didn't bother me in the least when I was in my 20's and 30's. Now, it depends a lot -- is the pleasure of the guest's company going to be worth it? Is he/she someone I know will enjoy the stay non-judgmentally? For example, my husband's sister is a dear and I love her with all my heart, but she is also a complainer. Guest complaints can be a good thing, when they alert me to something I can quickly remedy -- like Hank's story of the overflowing toilet. But how, I wonder, does she think it is helpful to tell me that the guest shower sounds so loud in my son's old room (the one she was sleeping in that visit) that it made it hard to sleep after folks started showering? That's not even actionable information -- it's just a complaint!

    I don't use a cleaning person routinely, but I do sometimes bring one in before house guests. And though my husband has always accused me of cleaning for the cleaner, I have always viewed it more like this: I am paying them to DEEP CLEAN. But they are only going to spend so much time at our house. If I have remove the clutter, then they are going to spend their entire allotted time DEEP CLEANING. I count that as a win!

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    1. GOod plan,Susan! And yes, the complainers..as if we didn't KNOW that the furnace clunks sometimes.

      And that's a great idea to have a super clean. This time of year is perfect for that, of course. And I wonder if I should get someone to wash the windows?

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    2. We have forty windows, each complete with storm windows, plus half are multi-panee leaded glass casements. I used to wash them. Now we have a man who comes in each spring for the day, does them all, inside and out, upstairs and down, plus three storm doors. And all for $500. Cheap at twice the price. By all means Hank. Get someone.

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  13. I love guests, and yes, I clean before the cleaning lady comes, too. What is up with that! We live in Florida, but far from the water, I generally encourage them to stay nearer the sea than where we live if they are coming for a short stay, and if it's only a weekend, we'll rent suites and all stay by the sea together.

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    1. Oh, Brilliant! Suggest that you ALL go somewhere. Somewhere with separate bathrooms and closets and privacy/. :-)

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  14. When we lived in San Francisco, practically on the sand, we had to consult our calendars before committing to guests. People came from far and near, and often! Not so many visitors these days, although there is plenty of space, far more than we need.

    We have designated guest rooms, complete with book shelves and good reading lamps. It's so irritating to be in a new place, lacking something to read, and worse yet, hungry and thirsty. So we stock little snacks, cookies and crackers and the like, water and also a decanter of something adult. Plenty of pillows, too. Extra blankets, and now that the luggage rack bit the dust, an ottoman to hold a suitcase or two. The closet has hanging space and there is also a rack on the outside, complete with hangers, big enough to hold a weekend's worth of clothes for two.

    Weekend is the operative word. Other than my children, I prefer visits be limited to three days. Longer than that and I get tired of company, would be anchorite that I am. We have a bathroom on each floor, and I really wish the one in the third floor was on the second where is would get more use. But our house is 95 years old, and we're just grateful that we have running water and indoor plumbing!

    That being said (phrasemaker that I am), you are all welcome, together or separately, to come and stay. I promise there will be enough to do, enough to eat, and a little more than enough to drink. I just hope you don't mind sharing a bed.

    Oh, and we have a housekeeper who comes in every other Friday, so plan accordingly. xox

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    1. Fridays it is! And yes, the snack thing is so critical. And hangers. You have this nailed, I see.

      Now I am worrying. I have to go get hangers. However the closets are full, so....ah.

      AndI have come to really be fond of luggage racks.

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    2. The best thing I ever did, well almost, was to get those little over the door thingies for guests to hang their clothes. No one I know has the luxury of an empty guest room closet, but these do the trick, and, after all, it's just for the weekend!

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    3. That's a great suggestion, Ann. I've got guests coming next month, and was wondering how in the world I could clear out some of the Sailor's closet. His room has become the guest room, but because he has very little space in his Bachelor Enlisted Quarters (and none when he's on ship!) most of his STUFF will be stored here for the next however many years.

      Now I'm thinking an over the door hanger and a suitcase rack might solve my problem.

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    4. AN over the door thing! Brilliant brilliant brilliant.

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  15. Hank, congratulations! So excited for your new thriller!
    I've had family here for the weekend, for my granddaughter's graduation, and one thing I've overlooked about guests is all those sheets to be washed and folded when they go!

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    1. Oh, right....but here is a certain zen in folding, right? Except for the fitted sheets, and we will not even talk about that. :-)

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    2. In our household we stopped doing the folding long ago -- when the guests leave, we immediately launder everything and remake the bed with the linens that came off of it. Yes, there's one extra set already folded just in case of emergency, but this way no folding, and the room is immediately ready for the next use!

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  16. Eagerly awaiting the Red's pending book launches, I have the dates noted on my calendar. I think I will wander over to your author pages to insure I am on your mailing lists.

    Most cabin cruisers have a larger foot print than the house. We do have a big back yard, if you are willing to sleep in a tent in FL welcome. Unless you are a Red, then I would sleep in the tent, you would get the house + 3 cats + a beyond shabby chic interior and a weird combination of Pacific Northwest/Southern hospitality provided by your hostess.

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    1. Yes, yes, make sure you are on the mailing list! I have a newsletter coming soon, and trust me, you do not want to miss it! :-)

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  17. Yay, Hank!! I'm sure those are just the first of many accolades to come!

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    1. Oh, gosh, thank you. Crossing fingers. It is SO stressful! Wonderful, but stressful. We're all family here, so just keepin' it real. xxxoox

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  18. Guests can be pure pleasure or high anxiety. I don't have a housecleaner. I told my husband when he brought it up that no one can clean a house when stuff is sitting around with no place to be put up. Right now we have no guest quarters. One bedroom is used as my husband's "junk"room with exercise equipment and other junk. The designated guestroom has been occupied by our son for a few years now as he progresses through college. Our granddaughter has been our only overnight guest in a few years. Our son vacates his room for her so it works out. Back when we did have guests we did a combo of eating out and cooking in. The best guests are like family. They make themselves at home, including making the coffee if they're first up and bringing in the newspaper to read. Love that!

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    1. I do, too. People think it makes it more difficult, butI think it is a joy!

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  19. How about sharing a vacation house with other people? Are you enthusiastic about THAT?

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    1. We’ve done that and it has worked out well. You have to be choosy about who you would want to vacation with and for how long. Everyone has to be flexible.

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    2. It's nice that you think I can afford to go on vacation, but no. If I was doing that I'd much rather just be alone so I can do things on MY schedule.

      Besides, there's not a whole lot of places I'd want to visit anyway. 3 countries and 1 state.

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  20. Hank - this is just thrilling (pun intended)!!!! Seriously, I am so excited for this book to this the shelves in August!!! Yay!!!

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    1. Oh, thank you! It's gonna be all hands on deck for Rhys and Lucy and me, right? xoxoo RED POWER

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  21. Hank, the excitement and accolades concerning Trust Me are kicking into high gear, and I am so looking forward to reading it soon and joining the fun. But, I don't have to read it to jump on the Hank bandwagon and shout out that a new Hank Phillippi Ryan book is on the way, so come on along and join the parade. And, congratulations on making that awesome list!

    Julia, your mother must have been a treasure. I had a great chuckle over her advice. I worried about having guests before I had painting and a bathroom renovation and new floors done a few years ago, and I thought having all that done would make me worry less. Now, it's the clutter and books everywhere. I don't mind people knowing that I'm passionate about books, but I don't want to have to move them to give a guest a seat. Of course, it's family that I have staying over, so it makes it easier to not go nuts about it all. My granddaughters love to explore my "stuff," so that's good. I do have plans for my husbands semi-retirement this summer to get rid of lots of excessive "things." Oh, and I do try to have plenty of food available for the family visits.

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    1. Right. The guests don't need seats--they're guests. And good idea--he'll never notice the missing "things." (And aw, thank you! Watch your mailbox! xooo)

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  22. We had a housecleaner for a short while when I was pregnant with my first child. It never occurred to me to pre-clean for her, and she wanted me to declutter so she could dust and vacuum. I am happy to vacuum and dust around my stuff, so since her request required more work than I enjoy, I have cleaned my own house ever since. As for overnight guests, I'm happiest when they're my children, though we have had a handful of friends stay with us over the years. I generally remember to show them where the linen closet is and remind them to make themselves at home. I'm not sure why I don't get more caught up in worrying about whether they'll have the perfect guest experience, but I feel like if I enjoy their company they'll probably enjoy mine and that's more important to me than creating a spa-like environment for them. Plus I'm providing a free place for them to stay, so you get what you pay for. :)

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    1. TRUE! and you are a fabulous host! "Make yourself at home" is the best advice--but seems like no one ever really does it.

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    2. Thanks, Hank! I suppose there are different rules to "make yourself at home" in someone else's house versus your own. Luckily we've only ever had fabulous guests, so no crazy stories of things gone horribly wrong. :)

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  23. Friends and relatives are welcome, but must appreciate "creative clutter" if they come to this home that looks like a library. I do clear spaces for guests to sit, and always have coffee and snacks on hand . . . and plenty of books. Storytellers will tell audiences they are welcome to take them home . . . on CD "because in person we're expensive to feed."
    When I had someone come to clean for me, I tried to pick up a bit so she could reach what needed cleaning, though sometimes I'd put a "skip this" sign on a table full of papers to grade. Now with no carpet and in-wall vacuum system, my allergies allow me to clean for myself, simpler and I get the exercise from it.

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    1. Creative clutter! Love that. And books are never clutter, right?

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  24. I've had roommates for so long, that having guests wasn't really an option. It is now, and I would have to do some serious picking up and cleaning before it happened, however. With just me here, it is so easy to be lazy and let things just sit there.

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    1. Join the club! But as Hallie says, it does make you see your place through other people's eyes. Which is..interesting!

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  26. Congratulations, Hank. Wonderful to look forward to a new book for summer. Both house guests and house cleaners come into my life at my Florida snow bird rental, not at my Connecticut home. Rental has two bedrooms and two full baths and the ocean and the beach. Quiet home is a condo with two bedrooms, but one is my whatever room with just a cot ( was my office before retirement) and one full and one 1/2 bath. Just too crowded for company and no beach attraction. House cleaner for the rental is wonderful — “not my stuff” to be cleaned around. So I don’t preclean. Every other Friday, perfect.

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    1. I Don't Preclean would be a terrific bumpersticker! :-)

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  27. Loved reading all of the Jungle Red authors' experiences with guests. Unfortunately, ,my place is too small for guests.

    A friend, who is always fixing up places, was telling me about her parents staying with her family for three months. I was surprised because she did not seem to mind. Her father helped her with a home project, repairing furniture or something. I remember many people telling me that they are fine with guests as long as they do not stay more than three DAYS! This friend and her husband live in a big house with their two teenagers. I think six bedrooms and 8 bathrooms with a modern kitchen.

    Wonder if it makes a difference in how many bathrooms and bedrooms you have? If you live in a four bedroom five bathroom house, would having guests be easier than if you lived in a one bedroom one bathroom house?

    Diana

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  28. Later than most here, but just had to weigh in. We enjoy guests--full sized guest room on the second floor and a tiny one on the ground floor. But we bought our house in part because of that little one--hub's 94 year-old mother could come to stay and not have to deal with the stairs! And mostly, it's our tv room, with a comfy day bed to lounge on and a side table for our snacks and adult beverage. But how about a post about BEING a guest? Hub and I recently stayed for just one night at the house of one of his brothers. Four bedrooms, but three of them belonged to his kids--who are all adults and NEVER going to live there again. We got to stay in the basement den. Bro was so proud of the air mattress we would get to sleep on. It was queen sized! It has an electric pump! It took real sheets! So wonderful! We slid ourselves onto this modern miracle and eventually fell asleep. A few hours later, we were awake, elbows poking each other uncomfortably as this thing had significantly deflated, rolling us into the middle of the sinking. . uh. . ship, or mattress. Bro was so enthusiastic again the next morning. Wasn't it wonderful! So comfortable! Good night's sleep, he assumed! Hub asked where the closest hotel was for the next visit.
    But come on over to our house, y'all. Comfy (real) beds and I've made a whole lot of strawberry syrup. So there will be waffles. And bacon. New Haven is nice.

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