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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

On Hosting

In Jewish communities, we do a lot of hosting. We host family, friends, and neighbors. We invite new families looking to integrate into the communtiy. We host friends who have had a hard week and need a break. We invite people who don't fit in perfectly.  In Judaism, it's a mitzvah (commandment) to welcome guests, especially those who need a place.

As a mom of two little ones who works outside the home, I've thought a lot about finding my groove with this mitzvah. On one hand, my own family keeps me busy enough that I could easily stop there. On the other hand, I have always wanted to have an open home, full of guests, and I can't give up on that so easily.

My solution? (Trying) to balance. I don't host every week, but I host. When someone offers to contribute something to the meal, I enthusiastically accept. I cook food that I like to prepare and eat, and try to accept that there's no way to please everyone.

Most of all, I try to remember that quote above. Just recently, I hosted a friend who lives in a home much bigger and fancier than mine, and I was nervous to have her over. But I told myself--I'm happy with what I have, which is what matters, and I'm sure my friend would rather be invited over than not!  And of course, it turned out just fine--wonderful, even.

Do YOU ever get nervous having guests over? How do you handle it?


  1. I am nervous right now because my daughter's graduation is coming up and I will be hosting about 20 family members all from out of town - very nervous! I just tell myself they love me, be calm and plan, plan, plan all the details!

    1. So true--just try to make sure you relax and enjoy it when everyone's there!

  2. I love that quote! I get nervous about certain people but I have to tell myself that it always ends up enjoyable. I agree with your comment about they would rather be invited over than not at all. I just always want to make sure my house smells good. I'd hate to be the family that has a weird smelling house! lol ;-)

    1. Ha! I hear that! I think that if you're conscious of smell, then it probably smells delicious!

  3. Oh, I definitely struggle with this! I am an introvert, and I get very nervous being hostess. But it is important to me also to have a welcoming home, so it is something I am always working on. :)

  4. Sigh...we used to have people over all the time the first few years we were married. Then a little less frequent as families got busy with kids' activities,etc. I only get nervous once a year, when I try to spruce things up for a big open house on New Year's Eve. Other than that, you're welcome to enjoy the home that we LIVE in!

  5. I can definitely relate! hosting is hard for me, especially overnight guests. I actually blogged about it once before!

  6. Since we live in a caravan, we often wonder whether it will work out to have families who live in larger homes -- you know, because they and their kids are used to more space. Hosting in the warmer weather is a plus since it allows the kids to play outside, but the truth is that I can't remember ever having a negative hosting experience because of limited space. Though there IS that family of 10 we keep wanting to invite but realistically can't...

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