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Over the hills and through the woods, to Grandmother’s house we go… During the holidays many adult children go home for Christmas. Parents and grandparents also may leave home to visit their adult children. I’ve enjoyed both these types of visits. In November, I wrote some tips for “taking home with you” as you travel, perhaps on business or even pleasure – http://www.sandwichink.com/take-a-bit-of-home-on-your-travels . Here are more travel tips for those times when you are traveling to visit family or friends you see often, or vice versa.
When I first went to visit my daughters’ homes, I bought a big plastic tote (like ones made by Rubbermaid or Sterilite). I filled it with items I normally use, such as shampoo, conditioner, a bath sponge, hand soap, and other toiletry items. There are small bottles of my vitamins, pain relievers for headaches, etc. I have coloring books, crayons, and a couple of favorite children’s Bible song CDs in there for a special time with my grandchildren. I also packed a copy of my favorite study Bible. Now when I go to visit them, they pop that tote out from storage and I have all my favorite items without having to run to the store. We all use different soaps due to allergies, dry skin, etc., so it makes it really easy to visit them without adding to their busy schedules or mine. Trust me, when I’m visiting, I’m constantly moving, because there’s so much to enjoy and so little time to do it 🙂 . This also results in lighter luggage and fewer headaches in the security line at the airport. We even bought one extra booster seat for my visits with the grandkids. That way I can take one grandchild at a time with me on errands for some one-on-one visiting, and their parents don’t get stuck without a car seat when we forget it’s in the back seat.
When regular guests, including grandchildren, visit me, I have the same type of tote waiting for them as well. I have filled this tote with a special sponge, a wash cloth, slippers, a bathrobe, favorite lotions, manicure goodies for the gals, and aftershave for the guys that we purchased together at various times. The day they arrive, I put the tote out on their bed, along with a fresh towel, new box of tissue, and a bottle of water for each.
Some other ideas for welcoming guests can include:
Stocking up on breakfast items they enjoy, like cereal, fruit, milk, and yogurt
Putting a few books and magazines you know they’ll enjoy into their room
Providing an alarm clock and making sure there are enough available outlets for their needs, including cell phones, laptop computers, etc.
They say you can never go home again. That’s not true, for which I’m quite grateful. But it is certainly different. These ideas help to make it seem less different and more “at home and homey."