Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Are You a Guest…or a Host?

Guest or host?

I saw this question posted on Facebook recently, and it made me think. I have to admit, I often find myself on one side of the fence more than the other. And I have a theory as to why. Kind of like right-handed people or left-handed people, there are those who are more comfortable playing host and those who are more comfortable being a guest. I guess I fall into the former category.

We hosted a big Thanksgiving get together, and now I’m writing up my list for Christmas dinner. All my kids will be there, along with my dad and my college daughter’s Brazilian roommate. I tried to figure out why I enjoy it so. Maybe it’s because I love being with my family and friends on my own turf. Maybe it’s because I’m a glutton for punishment. What I suspect, however, is that it’s because I’m an introvert. What? An introvert who wants to host Thanksgiving and Christmas? Bear with me, here. I actually love being around family and friends, but I feel more comfortable doing it on my terms. As host, I can pop in and out of the kitchen, or make sure everyone has what they need. Those moments away from the crowd give me a chance to recharge my batteries and come back ready to tackle the next topic of conversation. I also really enjoy “doing” for people. I think it’s one of the ways I express love to those I care about.

Tina with hubby and Brazilian Friends
Tina with hubby and Brazilian Friends

On the other hand, I have a really close friend who hates having events at her home. It’s just too stressful for her. She much prefers to be a guest. (Maybe this is why we’re such good friends, we balance each other out). She’s a wonderful guest, she’s always right there asking what can be done and lending a hand. Conversation comes easily for her—she can sit for hours, visiting with this person or that person and walk away feeling energized and refreshed at the end of the evening. She’s comfortable no matter what her surroundings. I’m in awe of her ability to change and adapt to wherever she might find herself. I wish some of that would rub off on me. Really.

Fajita party at our home in Brazil
Fajita party at our home in Brazil

I’m a firm believer in knowing your gifts and polishing them, just like when we practiced penmanship in school. Oh, it might be fun for me to try to write with my left hand. I might even be able to scratch out a legible sentence or two, but soon my hand grows weary and the words become a mess. If I switch back to my right hand, however, I breathe a sigh of relief at how naturally I can shape and form those letters. It’s effortless. I think it’s the same thing with being a host, whether it’s for overnight guests or simply a quiet dinner with friends. It feels effortless. Fun. Like my brain settles into a comfortable routine that it knows and loves. In fact, my friend who’s the great guest is planning on spending a couple of days at our house during New Years. I’m looking forward to it. So is she.

What about you? Do you feel more comfortable as a guest or a host? Or maybe you’re one of those lucky ambidextrous folks who does both equally well!

Oh, and I have to show off the cover of Her Hard to Resist Husband, because Medicals are ringing in the New Year with a brand new look. What do you think? Do you like the new covers? Or were you a fan of the previous versions? Her Hard to Resist Husband 2


24 thoughts on “Are You a Guest…or a Host?”

    1. Lucky you, Fiona! Maybe you can give me some lessons on being a good guest! I always worry about creating too much work for my hosts, even though I enjoy doing it for others. Have fun with your get togethers! I’m sure you’ll have a wonderful time!

  1. I’m a much better guest, but that is because I can bail whenever I need space, and I need space A LOT. Can’t do that when people have invaded your turf!

    I think this has to do with the sheer size of my family. So many cousins… it gets overwhelming!

    1. I think that’s why I retreat to the kitchen from time to time. And my husband is an awesome talker (that man can TALK), so he takes some of the pressure off. And our cousin load (sounds like a disease, doesn’t it) is pretty light, so we don’t have huge get togethers. I might be a little more stressed if I were entertaining 40 people! 😉

      1. 40 is a small number around here. Keep in mind my mom’s mom is one of 7 still-living siblings(One passed away a few years ago, but her children and grandchildren still come to the get togethers … as do all the kids/grands of the 7 living… 40 isn’t much of a number 🙂

        My grandfather was one of 11, and one of his sisters passed at 98 with kids/grandkids/greatgrandkids at around 110. That’s one sister.

        Crazy country families… epic breeders.

    1. LOL, FF. I reckon if I lived in France I’d be a guest too. All that great food I probably couldn’t cook right ;). Thanks for visiting with us this year, FF. Merry Christmas !

    2. Thanks so much for stopping by FF!! I’m with Fiona, I would definitely love to be a guest in France. Such a gorgeous country.

      I knew the culture in Brazil fairly well, so I felt comfortable hosting there. I’m sure it would be very different, if I were new to the country.

  2. Love the new covers! I truly stress about hosting, yet, like you, I prefer to host on my turf and my terms. We have done a little remodeling so we have an open concept house, which means I can’t any longer sneak off into the kitchen to hide out. I’m right there with the guests! LOL. However, I do still have the very good excuse to be busy and I wear that badge of honor with pride. When all is said and done, I really do love having the ones I love in my home for special events (Like my daughter’s baby shower last Sunday). This year on Thanksgiving, my daughter hosted and I must admit, it was great to be a guest! Maybe it’s time to pass that mantle on to the young ones. 🙂

    1. Congratulations on your baby shower, Lynne! Such a special event.

      I agree, I really enjoy flitting around and making sure everyone has everything they need. I just truly enjoy the whole process (except the part leading up to the event–then I’m normally a mess). If I’m hosting, I get to talk a little bit to a lot of people–rather than the other way around. 🙂

    1. Jill, I love that!! I think I’m a host married to a guest, lol. My husband is a wonderful conversationalist and is one of those change-and-adapt type of people. It is a balancing act, keeping both people happy, isn’t it? But we somehow manage!

  3. I think host because I’m at home and don’t have to go anywhere, but this year I’m not being a host at all. Guest, which has me a bit stressed. Although, Christmas Day we’re just staying here so I can spend all day in my pjs eating junk. 😉

    1. Oh! PJs eating junk. I never thought about that as an option. Okay…I revise my opinion. I choose that!

      Seriously, I feel for you being a guest. I always feel a bit stressed being in someone else’s home. You just never quite feel like yourself (at least I don’t). I always end up wanting to swap roles with whoever I’m staying with, which probably leaves them stressed. I’m always trying to wash the dishes or offering to do a million and one things. Yeah, I’m not a very good guest. 😉

  4. Hey Tina. I’m a much better hostess than a guest. I’m not good a small talk so as a hostess I always have something that I need to be doing. I have to be busy and sitting around talking is my idea of a good time. I do think I need to work on the guest thing because I could use some down time and it would be good for me.
    I love the new covers. Very up to date. I was tickled to be your partner in the 2 in 1 package this time around.

    1. Susan, you hit the nail on the head! That is EXACTLY why I’m a better host. I can work and work and work and just engage in a few minutes of chit chat with each person. I envy my husband so much in that aspect. He can think of a million things to say, where I would just draw a blank. I’m trying to learn to be a better guest. But old dogs and all…it’s not easy for me.

      I felt fortunate as well to be paired with you!!

  5. I’m a ‘swing both ways’ person like Amy and Fiona! I love being invited to someone’s home, where all I have to do is show up or bring an appetizer or side dish. But I am blessed to have a house that is good for entertaining and I enjoy cooking. I believe that friends and family simply enjoy getting together, which prompts me to play hostess sometimes to make that happen. Since having a perfectly kept house doesn’t seem to be in my genes, I’ve learned over the years to not stress too much about that when having people over. I don’t think they notice too much, (if they do, they don’t have to come next time 😉 though I force myself to ‘see’ the clutter I’ve ignored for a while and put it away!

    I love the new covers! I’m excited that my debut happens to be released the same month the new designs are.

    1. Your cover was beautiful, Robin! I really love the new design–and yay you for having your release happen right as the new covers are being rolled out.

      I don’t worry too much about everything being perfect, maybe that’s why I can host things. I do like to be creative and for the table to be pretty, but if there are a few fingerprints on the refrigerator door, that’s okay too.

      You guys are definitely going to have to put together a how-to manual for us guest-challenged folks. You’re inspiring me to change my ways (or at least give it a shot).

  6. Hi Tina, I’m probably a better guest than a hostess! Mainly because I’m a bit of an anxious cook and I find it challenging to get that balance of hostess duties to keeping tabs on how the food is cooking! Though, having confessed that, I am actually improving my hostessly skills and working on being a less anxious chef! Because I do love being visited! It’s a dilemma! 😉

    The new covers are very attractive! I’m a fan!

    1. Sharon, it sounds like we’re both working on improving some skills! Although I’m sure you’re a much better hostess than you think you are. Because if you love being visited, that’s all part of it. I get anxious cooking and doing the prep work as well, but once everyone is eating and enjoying each other’s company, I relax and enjoy the visit!

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