A quick guide to keeping your cool when playing host this holiday season.

By Katherine Owen
October 19, 2016

This article originally appeared on SouthernLiving.com.

There is a moment, a certain and undeniable experience that anyone who has ever hosted overnight guests knows. There’s no precise timing to it—sometimes it happens several days in, sometimes mere minutes—but you know the feeling. It’s when, as a host, your reserve of patience, graciousness, and pleasantry has near run out. Because no matter how much you love your family, no matter how much you love hosting them, and no matter how hostess-with-the-mostess-Pinterest-board-ready your home is, people get sick of each other. It’s just what happens. And then on top of that, there are surprises, like they brought their dog, their kids, their political opinions, and their problems. So here’s a brief refresher on a few ways to stave off the inevitable houseguest-related holiday stress. Are you on the visiting team? We’ve got a guide for you too.

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