As mom used to say, “La famiglia e tutto.” Our families connect us with our pasts and encourage us to move toward bright futures. But that doesn’t mean having them come for a visit can’t be nerve-wracking, especially when they’re your in-laws. But keeping an open mind and knowing how to prepare your home for a visit from your in-laws will help keep the butterflies at bay.
Have a Family Meeting
For some, a visit from the in-laws is a sure way to bring up old insecurities. Having a candid conversation about those feelings with your spouse will help you support each other throughout the visit. The same goes for your kids. If there are things they should know about nonno and nonna before they arrive, tell your kids now. Things will go a lot more smoothly for everyone involved.
Prepare the Guest Bedroom
Even if you don’t have a dedicated guest bedroom, make sure that wherever your in-laws are staying is up to par. Naturally, that starts with some good old-fashioned spring cleaning, but you can go the extra mile to impress by:
- Buying new linens
- Putting out a flower bouquet
- Making a welcome basket
- Leaving them access to a streaming service or some DVDs
- Having the kids draw them a picture and leaving it for them
This isn’t to say that you have to become a bed and breakfast service, but adding a little extra “something” will bring a smile to your in-law’s face.
Plan the Bathroom Situation
Balancing bathroom time is hard enough for most families, but things become more challenging when you have a few extra people in the house. Decide which bathroom you want to reserve for your in-laws’ use. Or, if you only have one bathroom, plan how you’re going to reorganize your schedule so you can get ready too. Don’t forget to put out fresh towels and buy extra soap and toothpaste either.
Arrange Meals in Advance
The kitchen table is the heart of any home, so preparing your home for a visit from your in-laws isn’t complete without deciding what you’re going to put on it. If you’re cooking, review your recipes and buy all your ingredients before they arrive. Remember to double-check if they have any dietary restrictions, and make sure you have a few crowd-pleasing restaurants in your back pocket in case the cooking goes south.
Family is truly everything. And even if we don’t always get along, we’d all rather have a pleasant visit than an unpleasant one. By setting the tone beforehand, you’ll be able to welcome your in-laws with wide open arms when they arrive at your door.