Hotel Life: The Ups & Downs

Another four and a half more weeks before we move into our new house. Here are my thoughts on living in a hotel.


$ Cost $: My husband’s relocation package helped us break our lease, but staying in hotel for a month is still significantly more expensive than any type of rental. In case you haven’t noticed, we hardly go out to eat anymore.

Climate Control: Each room is equipped with a thermostat. While we can adjust the temperature to our hearts’ desire, the air conditioner, located next to the bed, hurls freezing cold wind throughout the entire room. On hot days, the room quickly vacillates between frigid cold and stifling hot. There’s no middle ground.

“I will freeze or suffocate you!” 

Cleanliness: When I enter a hotel room, I immediately put my belongings in the bathroom and tear apart the beds searching for signs of filth or bedbugs. I’m no expert on pest control, but the process of examining the beds helps me to check a mental box so that I can move along.

I also remove any blankets from my bed.

You stay over there!

Last week, I found a small spot of dried blood on a corner of the hotel comforter. Now I sleep with a blanket I brought back from home. My hotel life is like a game of “don’t touch the ground.”

Strange smells. 


The television channels include Food Network. 

Wireless Internet.

Outlets everywhere. 

Workout room. 

Daily room cleaning service: The staff even make my bed with the blanket I brought from home. 

The Hotel Diet

Our “kitchenette” away from home.

Our hotel is stocked with a mini fridge and microwave. We couldn’t find any options offering more than these accommodations.

In the mornings, I hit the breakfast buffet with my husband before he leaves for work. At 6 a.m., it’s quiet and I don’t have to contend with a crowd. It’s shocking how intensely people move around breakfast buffets. The meals are included in the rate, so I fill up here and save a yogurt or bagel for later. Honestly, it’s not that bad.

I stock our mini fridge and pantry with staples like diet frozen dinners, soup, cheese and crackers, and fruits and vegetables. There’s never a shortage of hot sauce or wine.

My friend had to live in a hotel while her husband was transferring in Fargo and suggested that I try my hand at microwave pickling. She also sent this recipe for asparagus and lemon risotto that can also be made in the microwave. I got really excited until I realized we don’t have a cutting board or knives.

There’s also the issue of not wanting to cook anything too pungent. I don’t want strong smells in our small living space and our neighbors probably won’t want them wafting through theirs.

Hotel Life Makes Me Especially Grateful For:

Homecooked meals. Last weekend, we stayed with Jake’s parents. His mom made me a ham sandwich that I enjoyed with wild abandon. When our parents make us comfort foods like sloppy joes and hot dish, they really fill a void. At the end of a week in which the most exciting thing I ate was an Applebee’s Oriental Chicken Salad, I fantasize about homecooked food.

Laundry: Our folks are the best because they let us do loads of laundry at their houses.

Do you have any hotel life hacks? 


  1. Amy @ Minnesota Locavore

    You are so much braver than I am! I would’ve checked out at the dried blood and slept in my car. At least this will make your next kitchen that much more exciting!!!

  2. Jen

    Thanks Amy. I can’t wait to set up my kitchen. You wouldn’t call me brave if you saw me screaming and carrying on when I saw the blood on my comforter.

  3. KirkK

    Man, that’s tough. When I did consulting work, I’d live in hotel rooms for up to 8 weeks straight in places like Fort Smith, Columbus-Georgia, which were really tough. Bigger cities; I spent a good portion of a year and a half in Atlanta which wasn’t too bad, but you do start craving a home cooekd meal after a couple of weeks. Plus, there’s a issue of an ever-changing variety of “neighbors”, some of whom can sometimes be a bit “different”. I hope the time goes quickly for you!

  4. Jen

    Thanks for the empathy:) Neither of us have traveled for work often, so living in a hotel for this long is a new experience. By the way, I always enjoy keeping up with your blog:)

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