With young children, this can sometimes be challenging. Here are a few things that I am seeking to remember as we practice hospitality.
1. Keep expectations low. Your guests are usually just thankful to be in your home. Yes, you should clean up and prepare for your guests, but don't put pressure on yourself to make things perfect! This wise advice was written in a card from our wedding and hung on our fridge for years:
"Your guests don't care what you serve, or how clean your house is.
What matters most to your guests is that they were invited.
Practice hospitality often."
2. Embrace your entertaining style/personality. We try to live fairly simple, relaxed lives. If our guests know our family at all, they won't be expecting fine china. BUT, that may be your style! If you like fancy, embrace it! If you're more simple, embrace it! Whatever will make you and your guests most comfortable.
3. Make something you're comfortable serving. Entertaining is probably not the time to pull a whole untested menu from pinterest to try out on your guests. Maybe one new recipe, but try to stick mainly to stuff that you've cooked before.
4. Try to make something your guests can eat/like. I ask about food allergies and preferences and make a variety of types of food.
5. Practice! They more often you have people in your home, the easier it will be! We host community group in our home most weeks and try to have dinner guests often. I also meet with ladies in our house and schedule play dates. Our extended families live out of state, so we get to practice when they visit as well.
6. Relax and enjoy your time together.