During January 2020, Jenny and her family traveled to Arcata, CA to visit her oldest son for his birthday and stayed in a HomeExchange. To their delight, their host’s Christmas decorations were still up, giving a festive atmosphere to their home swap experience. She was nice enough to share the amazing memories she made with her family and how her hosts were able to keep the magic of the holiday season alive for them, even after Christmas had passed.

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What did you appreciate most about the home you stayed in?

Even though it was almost mid-January, the hosts had left their Christmas tree up. It was fully decorated with lights and glass ornaments, so fun to have it in the living room! There were kids toys everywhere, and not well organized which made it less stressful to clean up before we left! The home was comfortable and well lived-in, my favorite kind of home to stay in.


What did you appreciate most about your exchange partner?

The communication was easy. There was a note left for us on their kitchen chalkboard which was very welcoming!

What did you see or do during your exchange?

Our oldest son lives in Arcata, and we went to see him and celebrate his birthday. It was special for us all to be together and have a home where we could gather for food and games. We walked to Los Bagels (of course), we got to see the King Tide – huge waves bursting against the rocks – and visited the Redwood Community Forest on a very rainy day.


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What is one of your best memories or experiences from a home exchange?

Playing Jackass with my husband and all my kids in a house in Arcata, where there was a decorated Christmas tree in the middle of January, after a day exploring the forest and the seaside.

What would you say to your friends and family who are considering HomeExchange?

HomeExchange is for people who love and appreciate their own home. They get to stay in other equally-loved homes and know that people who are visiting their home are glad to be there and will take care of it.

What tips and tricks would you give to new HomeExchangers?



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