Saturday, March 7, 2009

Practicing Hospitality: Chp 4

Lindsey, from Passionate Homemaking, continued our book club discussion last week with chapter four. Sadly, I'm just getting around to posting my thoughts. For previous chapters, check out chapter one, chapter two, and chapter three.

These are just a few of the points that stuck out to me in this chapter:
*"Planning suggests that you are anticipating opportunities to prepare a meal, invite a guest to stay the night, or open your home to others in some way (pg 103)."
*"A crucial part of successful hospitality is to be purpose-driven (pg 117)."
*"Planning meaningful conversation will help you be more effective in your ability to meet the needs of your guests (pg 121)."

1. How can you become a planner of generosity?
We love spending time with friends after church on Sundays. However, with two little ones going out every Sunday can quickly become hectic. One of the ways we've worked out Baby Girl's morning nap is for me to bring the kids home for her nap while my husband and friends pick up lunch to bring back to the house. While this has been a good short term solution, it's also been costly. So my plan is to start making a few freezer meals that I can pop in the oven after church. This way we can still have guests, but not be rushed to make lunch.
I'm also planning to make some breads and goodies for the freezer. I have a friend who does this then feels like she can easily have guests over for coffee and still have something to offer them.
As far as planning for conversation, I need to discuss this idea with my husband further. I've never thought about it before, but I do think it's something we need to pray about and pursue further.

2. How can you begin to change your perspective to view household management with an eternal purpose?
I've always kept a fairly tight cleaning schedule and while I'm a pack rat, I still like to keep it picked up and tidy. One of the ways in which I can view it with an eternal purpose is to pray while I'm cleaning, asking the Lord to remind me that I'm cleaning my home for his glory, not for my own comfort. Praying that I'd remember to extend hospitality as my home is already ready.

3. What tips might you have to help maintain a more orderly and prepared home?
I do have a cleaning schedule, one that is still basic, but has helped structure me enough to keep my home in working order. Daily tasks include: wiping down the counters, loading the dishwasher, sweeping the kitchen, making the beds, tidying up the papers and picking up toys and items that have been drug around the house throughout the day.
Mondays I vacuum, Tuesdays and Fridays are laundry days, Tuesdays are trash days, Thursdays I clean the bathrooms as needed, and Fridays are a day for tying up loose ends. I try to have all my cleaning done throughout the week as weekends are reserved for family and tend to be heaver entertainment days. I try to have most of the heavy cleaning done by then.
I also have a couple of sample menus that I use routinely for when there's nothing in the fridge. My Lentil Tacos are a big hit as are my Chicken and Black Bean Enchiladas. Both are easy to make and I keep the necessary ingredients stocked in the pantry.

Join us for Monday for chapter 5: Hospitality and Your Home

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