On a scale of 1 to 10….

Mildred….she insisted we call her Mildred. Not by her proper name, but her first. She was one of my Mom’s best friends and no matter what we called her, hospitality should have been her middle name.

No matter when we came, Mildred would stop what she was doing and turn her attention and her hands to the task of blessing and ministering to us. She would sit at the table and serve us tea and freshly baked cookies. (These cookies were unlike any I had ever tasted before, nor since. They were a rich butter cookie, made with vanilla that her son sent up from Mexico, but with a twist. Just mouth-melting delicious…)

Mildred’s house wasn’t immaculate….in fact, most of the times that we were there it wasn’t even clean. Mildred wasn’t fashionable…in fact, she was an elderly, overweight woman with a leg that had been injured severely, requiring the use of a cane. Mildred wasn’t a gourmet cook….in fact, we had the same things every time we went to her house.

But despite all the things that Mildred wasn’t, she WAS a hostess. She delighted in serving and ministering to us. Her face would light up whenever we got there. No matter what she was doing, we were her highest priority.

If she was doing laundry, she’d bring it to the living room to fold, so we could talk. If she was hanging laundry out, she’d have one of us kids fill the water pitcher and bring it outside, along with some glasses, to drink from while she finished, so we could talk. (Sometimes she’d let us help hang out, sometimes she’d wave us away and say, “This is my exercise, I daren’t let you young’ens take it from me.”) If she was knitting (which is how we found her most often) she’d allow us to help her roll a new skein or she’d just pat the sofa beside her, so we could talk.

So it started me wondering, “Who do I know that is a wonderful hostess? What makes them so?” It has been good food for thought. (Any brilliant input? Any normal input?)

I found that I have some friends I would consider very good hostesses, but I can’t quite put my finger on why. I found I have other friends I would say are not as good hostesses – not because of their home or what they do – but because their true focus is themselves. I have continued to ponder on this, trying to discern the why, knowing that in doing so, I will learn much.

I’m still trying to get the courage up to honestly assess myself. (And no! This is not an invitation for any of you who have been a guest in my home to answer. πŸ˜€ Sorry, just not quite ready for that yet. When I am, I’ll let you know – maybe I’ll send you a questionnaire.) πŸ˜‰

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