For the first time in over a week, I sit in silence.
Our house has been bustling with a spontaneous family reunion (They drove from CO, WI, Oregon and MN). The chatter has been non stop (understatement), the fridge has been running on overdrive, and if a moment of peace was desired, the only option was heading out to our woods.
Yet, it was a week of living Life to its fullest.
Here is what I realize about hospitality. If you have a “Welcome Home” mentality, they will come.
Friends and family aren’t coming for a perfect house. (So why do we spend days cleaning, painting, and rearranging, just to try and make it look like no one lives there? The counter stayed clean for the first few days, but by the end…it just didn’t matter anymore.)
Friends and family aren’t coming for the gourmet meals (although, I must admit, some easy appetizers and dips go a long way.)
Friends and family aren’t coming for the luxury accommodations (although one family did bring an RV as an alternative housing choice. ;)).
Friends and Family come because everyone desires a place to connect, to communicate, and to cherish those relationships that we all hold dear.
Since I was gone the four days leading up to our spontaneous reunion, I had to let go of many of the things I consider “necessities” when entertaining.
And guess what? It was OK. Our week was delightful, laughs were had, stories reminisced, and no one knew all the “plans” I had to make my house just a bit more perfect, and my meals a bit more grand. Because in the end…that is not what this was all about.
As Max Beerbohm said, “When hospitality becomes an art, it loses its very soul.”
I desire our home to be a place your soul can breathe. It doesn’t always happen, but it’s my goal.
So open your doors, and they will come. For one small moment, everyone connects, feels at home, and knows that those around them really care.