Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sacred Life Sunday: Hospitality

This week I've been preparing for a week long visit on Monday by LoveHubbie's brother (D) and wife (J). D & J have never visited us, and they come from Texas so it's a big huge deal. I rarely have company (aren't you surprised?) and so I had a great deal to do. Added to my slacking off on my household responsibilities since the depression, there was a backlog of stuff as well. I'm tired and sore. However, I'm very excited about the visit.

Mainly for LoveHubbie. Since his father died, he and his two brothers mainly have each other---biologically---and that's all. I think that D realizes this, too, and I'm hopeful that they will renew a closeness they had when they were younger. In adulthood they've grown apart, so this is a special opportunity.

It's good for me, too, to get to know J. We are very different and don't know each other much at all.

I mainly want them both to be comfortable and have a good time. Hospitality isn't my strong suit mainly for lack of practice, but I do my best.

So today I'm thinking about how to foster comfort, relaxation, and family bonds.

You're probably wondering what's going on with BE BRAVE. I'm still at it, every day. Nothing noteworthy, lots of integration. I'm definitely recovering from depression, too. But everything is gradual. Nothing to count as a discrete BE BRAVE day or to write about in a BE BRAVE post.

Today I organized my closet with a few clothes I have now that fit me. I had to get larger size clothing so that I had something to wear outside the house. I expect that D & J will want to leave the house. And my see-through gauze muumuu won't cut it in the house either. I've had these nasty jeans I've been wearing that have an elastic waist and the stiff denim pooches out over my hips, so they are loose, but make me look like I have 30 extra pounds on my hips. They are so unflattering and make me feel like I have so much loose material hanging around me, so it's even harder to move around. Today I put them in a box for donation. I only want to wear things that make me feel like I care for myself.

With my company here, I'm going to be washing my hair, bathing, grooming, etc.---all those things I used to do automatically, but that I've fallen out of the habit of doing lately. Now I'm going to have to do them for 5 days in a row. So I figure why not set a habit and just keep up with it? This will be pretty challenging for me---that's the level I'm working at here.


~Photos by LoveHubbie Mark, kiawe grove photo altered by Me


thailandchani said...

Just be your warm and charming self. The rest will take of itself. I'm sure your company will want to know you - not your skill set. :)


Olivia said...

Thanks, Chani; I hope you're right :) Peace tonight, O

Rick Hamrick said...

I agree with Chani--it's not the expertise at hosting that your in laws will be seeking, but the simple openness and welcoming of them into your home which you are clearly planning to provide. You will set the stage for everything to flow naturally by making them feel at home.

Visits from out-of-towners are far less stressful if you remember that they want just as much as you do to be at ease and be relaxed. That attitude is far more important than tracking down that last renegade dust bunny under the far corner of the bed.

Jessie said...

speaking of showers...i really need one. :)-

it sounds to me like you have your be brave commitment covered while family stays with you. you'll be a wonderful hostess.

clothes--and wearing clothes that make you feel like you care for yourself. Yes! I had to go shopping Friday morning for something to wear to an event. I was so frustrated to have to go shopping because I didn't really have the time--and yet my clothes are all old and faded and look like shit. I really did want something new. Even though I felt rushed, I found 2 really great tops on super sale at Macy's. Really expensive stuff that would have been a couple hundred dollars each, but I got for hardly anything! In the end, I was glad I did that. I felt so much better in those clothes and have decided to invest a little bit more energy into feeling good about myself.

Oh...there is so much to comment on her, Olivia! But for now I will just say that I hope you have a fabulous time!

love you,

Kim said...

I also agree with Chani! It is you they are wanting to see, but if this helps you to move forward with your own process then it is a real gift!

I so get it about the clothes. I hate shopping for them! In some ways, I hate wearing them...always touching me when I don't want to be touched (sounds silly). But I have found soft fabrics make the world of difference. And the tunics, with their longer lengths, are wonderful. You can create this whole exotic wardrobe for yourself. Look at some of the wonderful clothes online meant for yoga...some really cool stuff!

I wish you the greatest luck with your guests. I am not good with having guests and am always ready to have my house back when they leave.

All the best!

CrystalChick said...

Just seeing a little bit of your home and yard in your videos and I know I'd want to come there!!
And you are so gentle and creative that I can't see them feeling anything other than love while they visit with you and LoveHubbie.
Good for you getting some new clothes!
I know how hard it is some days to get myself ready if I'm not going out and all I can manage is a 'bird bath', just a quick wash at the sink and a little bit of makeup. But that works too though!
No one really ever notices the things we stress over. Your guests will probably just want to relax and have a nice visit.

Olivia said...

How did you know about my renegade dust bunnies, Rick? Wait, there goes one now!

Of course, you are right. I think the key is, as you said, to emphasize their feelings of ease and relaxation, and to not worry about---anything!

Thanks, Rick,




Olivia said...


How we present ourselves to the world is important sometimes, and can affect us. I know my clothing and my presentation definitely affect my mood. I don't go overboard, but I too want to care for myself.

Thank you, Jessie, you, too,



Olivia said...


Yes, indeed! I like taking the challenges of life and making them into life lessons.

It's weird, but my challenge with my clothes is in letting myself put effort into being attractive. I don't know why. I'll definitely look into that. I've created an interesting wardrobe; I know what you mean about comfortable clothes that are yoga-lifestle-compatible; I like those too.

Thank you, Kim,



Olivia said...


Thank you. I love my home, too, and hope that my guests will as well.

I like the idea of a "bird bath". That will be something good to remember in my grooming challenges!

Yes, I will remember---FUN and RELAX---for everyone.

I may ask LoveHubbie to read just this post so that he can get on board, too. He is freaking out that everything won't be "perfect" (sigh!).

Thanks, Mary,




Kim Mailhot said...

Hi Olivia,
Start where you are... "What is right with you is the starting point, what is wrong with you is beside the point !" as my mom Guru says. Just think how lucky your guests will be to be with your authentic self... hopefully it will encourage them to be their authentic selves and you can all have a "real" visit ! Ain't that what it is all about ?

Thanks for your visit and your encouraging words today !
Happy Hostessing !

Olivia said...

Thanks, Kim...yes, indeed!
xxoo, O

laundrygirl said...

Guest that you don't know too well can be awkward yet just pretend you are hosting one of us and you'll be fine!
As for the clothes, today I said to myself, "you need a mini makeover!" Like Jessie, I have a closet full of stuff that's faded and old. I need a boost.
A few new items in your wardrobe will definitely perk you up!

Olivia said...

Kristine, Yes, that's one of the parts that is hard. Plus the acceptance factor...I mean acceptance of differences. However, I think that your idea is wonderful and I'll just pretend that it's one of you wonderful people coming and I'll be very happy and definitely looking forward to fun.

In our community, we do accept each other for who we are. We do tolerate differences. We don't care what religion someone is. Or how they keep house. Or what they read or don't read. Or anything else.

I'm going to pretend that's what will happen this week and maybe it will!

Sacred blessings,