If I’m staying overnight, is there anything I should keep in mind?

We have elsewhere discussed taking gifts to a home when you are spending the night, but there is more to being a “house guest.” While a person is a “guest,” he or she should not treat the house as a hotel and the family members as hotel staff waiting to meet their every need. While the family members will do their best to make their “guest” comfortable, the “guest” should realize that he or she is should be as light a burden and as little a disturbance to house–hold activities as possible.

In short, the visitor is briefly participating in the daily life of the family and should show appreciation for being invited by contributing even in some small way to the normal operations of the household. If you are only staying for one night, there may not be much that you can do, but you might offer to wash or dry the dishes after a meal or help set the table. Even if your offer is not accepted, the family will recognize your willingness to contribute.