Hospitality: Not a Picnic for One

Photo by gamene

Wow. I am posting late tonight. I’ve been burning the midnight oil on a new editing project. Yikes. Even the dog is snoring.

Last week I received an e-mail from a faithful reader who said that–while she would love to participate in hospitality–she has no opportunities to do so. Her house is small, she doesn’t like to cook, and she doesn’t have a family.

This got me thinking.

What IS hospitality? Have we put it in such a confined space (having people over for a meal) that we’re missing hundreds of OTHER ways we can participate in it on a regular basis?

Consider these ideas . . . which I believe are hospitality:

1. Host a baby or bridal shower.
2. Take cookies to local firemen or police to show your gratitude.
3. Take a treat or plant to the neighbors.
5. Share produce from your garden with people on your street.
6. Host a housewarming party for someone else.
7. Start a welcome wagon for your church, street, school, or community.
8. Visit people in the hospital.
9. Start a book club.
10. Host a block party.

There are MANY ways we can participate in hospitality that don’t involve heavy planning or serious cooking. There are hundreds of items I didn’t even list here tonight.

Hospitality–at its root–is simple, home-inspired thoughtfulness for the encouragement of others. And this time of year is perfect for trying out unique hospitality ideas. What is the most creative idea YOU can think of for practicing hospitality?

. . . and the dog just glared at me for making too much noise.

[Quietly closing my computer now]


  1. Katie O says:

    My house is average size I believe, but at the same time the floor plan does not accommodate parties very well. I choose to ignore it and have parties anyway. We also have a spacious back yard so when the weather is nice we entertain there. Otherwise I would suggest to those with limited space keep the guests list small and and the hospitality simple. One could rotate the guest list if he or she could not fit all of his or her friends in the house at once. Then one would not have to cook as much food.

    You could start a book club and meet at your library to discuss the book of choice. Libraries also have monthly events. I know of some libraries that have had a visit from president Lincoln. Very interesting!

  2. Jennifer says:

    Your hospitality starter-ideas are great! Hospitality truly begins in your heart ~ not your crock-pot!

  3. Rachel Masters says:

    A great book that I read on this topic was "Open Heart, Open Home" by Karen Mains which clarified the difference between hospitality and entertaining. Made a world of difference in the way I thought of having people over!

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