To start off, I love my family! …not all of them, but most of them! 🙂
However, adding anyone to your usual routine causes friction, so here are some ways to help with that!
1. Create a safe zone!
Having a clean room and being able to retreat to it when needed is a huge need for me when I have family in town! Honestly my family all thinks I go to bed early… well, actually, I go to bed early anyway! When they are in town I just head towards my room a little earlier in the night!
2. Take long showers!
First off, cause you’re in close proximity with others and you should seriously smell good! Second, because showering is another venue for alone time, without ignoring your guests and getting something productive done. Finally, showers allow you to process life and situations in a private environment!
3. Learn how to gently set boundaries!
I used the word “learn” because I’m really not sure how to, but I know it helps! 😉 Everyone needs to feel safe and included and loved…. Ways I have tried to do this are to openly say things like, “Ouch” if someone is being rude or one really effective thing is hide all the non-silicone or wood ware so that my brother-in-law doesn’t scratch my non-stick pans. Save the pans people! They are expensive to replace!
4. Make food ahead of time and freeze it!
This one is huge! Whenever family is in town they always want to “help” in the kitchen. Now some of them truly are helpful, but most of them get sticky or oily handprints everywhere and just end up creating more dishes… and on the dishes note, who wants to do dishes when there are lots of people around. All of those things being said, make meals ahead of time, freeze, and enjoy quickly and efficiently.
5. Create a laundry system.
Everyone has laundry. It is a simple fact of life. However, since going to college and having random people house sit for me, I have learned that not all people know how to do laundry… to the point that one person broke my dryer by not changing out the lint filter for 4 weeks!
So for the sake of saving your washer and dryer and everyone’s sanity, put in the time to label 3 baskets: Whites/lights, colored, and clean. Wash and dry and fold it all yourself and just have them grab their own clothing from the clean basket or hung up on the laundry rack.
6. Try and enjoy the moments!
Even though your life feels like your life is being taken over, they’re not here forever, so enjoy the little moments!
7. Remember that you can still have a social life!
Family may be in town, but depending on how long they are there, you can still leave them and go hang out with friends! It will probably help you all to get along if you’re not always together anyway! …on the same note, don’t ignore them!
8. Remember that it will end!
One of these days you’ll say your bittersweet goodbyes, go home, take those pants and bra off, and once again be able to enjoy your home all to yourself… unless you have a roommate or family or something else! …either way, your life will go back to normal eventually! 🙂
So next time you have family in town, you find that the second half of your burrito has been eaten, and someone is showering during your usual time slot, I hope these little tips help!
48 days down, 317 days to go!