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Fall is here and with the cooler season brings visitors near and far. Nothing spells hosting season like the holidays and the team at Andy Esbenshade knows a thing or two about hosting a party, weekend guests, or an unforgettable dinner soiree.

While we could lay out a list of must-do’s, why not make it easier. Let’s focus on what shouldn’t happen, so you can focus your creative energy and welcoming spirit into the planning aspect. Ready to get started? Take a look at the seven things good hosts avoid. You may find these details trivial, but we’re willing to bet you’ve experienced them at some point when you were a guest yourself.

  1. Check the Temperature

House too warm? Too cold? A good host will consult the temperature throughout the event to make sure guests are comfortable. Can’t seem to cool down the house fast enough? Usher your guests to the patio and enjoy the evening air!

  1. Stock up on Bathroom Necessities

Nobody dislikes being stranded in your bathroom more than your guest. Do everyone a favor by adding a few extra rolls of toilet paper, a box of tissues, and a full bottle of soap to your bathroom. Finally make sure your bathroom door has a lock. Pre-party planning may seem like a lot, but it’s far easier than running around during the actual event. What’s the best way to enjoy the evening? Front loading the majority of the world so you’re left to mingle, cheers, and chat all night long.

  1. Plan for the Unexpected

In a similar vein, a good host will anticipate their guest’s shortcomings. Stock up on extra toothbrushes. Have the air mattress primed and ready for the driver who simply can’t leave the party in his or her current state. Devote a phone charger for your guest room. These little touches are the foundational elements of the good host’s guidebook.

  1. Always Plan for Coffee

What’s the one thing overnight guests crave? Morning coffee. To make their stay comfortable, have your pot geared up the night before so any early riser will simply have to push the button for a fresh pot.

  1. Keep Allergies in Mind

Does your guest suffer after spending time around your cat? Is your best friend allergic to shellfish? The sooner you’re aware of what may spell out danger for your guest, the sooner you’ll be able to plan around it. Keep your guests informed of all possibly harmful ingredients or pets. Looking to score a few extra bonus points? Keep an OTC allergy medication on hand and always plan your food options around your guests. Even if that means saying goodbye to your shrimp cocktail.

  1. Include that Extra Element of Fun

Julia Child once said that a party without cake is just a business.

  1. Be Yourself

The last and possibly most important rule is to be yourself and strive to enjoy the time you’ll share with your guests. As the host, you have the power to make or break the evening and this is often a direct reflection on your mood throughout the night. Take a few minutes to breathe before guests arrive. Throw perfection out the window!

When you take the time to iron out the kinks, you’ll soon be the best host or hostess in town. It all boils down to a few basic ingredients. And once you know the formula, you’ll never look back.