Thursday, February 5, 2009


I have discovered something new about myself. Entertaining is not my "gift." I do love having people over, every part of it, but I get SO stressed out before-hand. Every time I say "this time will be different!" but it has yet to be. For about 3 years now we've made New Year's Resolutions to have someone over for dinner from church every month. But after the first time, I get so stressed out that I don't have the strength to do it again for months. What do I stress over? I'm asking myself the same question. I think these are the top things:

1) What to serve. Finally I've decided on two recipes that are no-fail dinners. It's either Italian or Mexican. For dessert, I often stress about that too and then end up running off to Marie Callendars at the last minute to get a pie. So, even though that's number one on my list, that one is slowly going away.

2) Cleaning the house. Because we're in a small house, every mess is magnified. I can mop the kitchen floor, but because we have white tile, it's pretty much pointless unless I do it 10 minutes before company arrives. Same with the rest of the house. We usually do a major clean the night before, but it's messy again the next morning and we have to start all over right before people arrive. Very frustrating. (We also do not have a place for everything since there's not a lot of room).

3) Having enough supplies. We are short on chairs, and short on silverware. We need to buy more of both, but haven't yet due to more pressing financial concerns. So, right now we can comfortably fit about 2 people besides ourselves. Beyond that, we just have to improvise.

4) What to do. I think my biggest stress is "what will we do?" I know - such a simple answer. DUH- talk, hang out! But I'm always nervous that someone will be bored. And because I'm not a natural extrovert, I sometimes can get tired out trying to think of conversation starters! Of course, this doesn't apply to good friends :)

So, if I invite you over, please know that I WANT you to be here, I LOVE having you over, and I do enjoy it while it's happening (and after). It's just that it doesn't come naturally to me. If I don't invite you over, please don't take it personal. Realize that it only happens about 2x a year at this point :)

Case in point, last night we were having people over at 6:00. At about 5:00 I went to get my tablecloth out - the only one I have that fits on table when the leaves are in (brand new, too, so I was SO excited to use it!). Well, it was nowhere to be found. I figured that Martin had put it in the garage somewhere since everything goes in there now (to save space). He looked for it for about 20 minutes and couldn't find it. I was stressing out, let me tell you. I was losing it. So, we ended up having NO tablecloth to use, and I was so frustrated. Our guests never knew what we had just been through. We still have no idea where it is!

I hope I didn't scare anyone about coming over! I know, I need therapy. Does anyone have any tips that could help me?! :)


  1. Looking forward to hearing advice because I pretty much have the same anxieties as you. :)

  2. This is going to sound strange - have people over more often! And don't worry that the house is perfect - people are understanding, maybe you could borrow a couple folding chairs from church? And asking your guests to bring something, is expected or even preferred.

    I've sooo been there, now we have people over nearly every week - it keeps me up with the messes better too :) is a great site for helping to overcome some of this stuff too.

    Bummer that last night was such so stressful, but really, don't wait so long once you find that tablecloth :)

  3. haha - Aw, don't feel bad! SO many people I know (including us) deal with this issue as well. ESPECIALLY those of us who have little kids! We always have to do the last minute cleaning the hour before company comes over. And we don't have all the fancy stuff either! We lose about 2 bowls and 1-2 glasses each month due to someone dropping them!! haha. And so at this point we're in major need of new dishes/glasses and servingware as well! You might want to make a special place for your "company" items, such as table cloths, special dishes, games (if you're into those) napkins/rings etc. I had to do this in one of our closets, that way I always know where my stuff is when we have friends over. And when I get something new (table cloth etc.) I just put it in this little special storage space. (out of the kids reach, of course! ;)
    But you're definitely not alone! When company is coming over, we here at the Banta house can stress out with the best of 'em! ha. ;o)