stop taking my peaches!

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four at four forty four

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so yesterday i bought peaches to use for breakfast. when i woke up in the morning two of them are gone. ( my kitchen is sort of a common area where guests must walk through to get to their room. the peaches were in a bowl in the corner of my counter top.) so i discovered when cleaning rooms which guests took them.
today i bought three more peaches. just walked through the kitchen two are gone ... same guests that took them yesterday are the only ones that have returned. (and these ones were not even ripe yet. hard as a rock. they must have tasted terrible)
so what do i do? i love the fruit on the counter ... looks nice, easy access, but i actually need it to serve breakfast. do i say something to the guest or just leave it go?
i know they are not super expensive, but every penny counts. and these peaches i actually bought for myself because i had one of the others and it was so delicious i wanted more.
i guess i'm just venting here. its just frustruating. last week someone drank a whole bottle of sparkling water i had on the counter to make sangria for a party i was attending the following day.
does this stuff happen to you? do you get frustrated? where's the line between being hospitable and being taken advantage of? and what happened to people's manners!? who just takes stuff off others people counters without even asking?
thanks for listening.
 

Copperhead

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Sounding by your set up there, people may feel you have these things out FOR the guests. So many B&B's do place things out for guests to help themselves. Given the free flow, if I were you I would either by extra fruit in case it is taken or store it out of site.
 

GeorgiaGirl

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I would also think since they have to pass through the kitchen to get to their room they must have thought the peaches were for anyone. Put some fake ones out tonight and see if they try to eat those LOL! Sounds like you have to put your stuff under lock and key...
 

jonedwste

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Maybe you could put a nice note on them saying "for tomorrow's breakfast"...?
 

scrambled_eggs

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Yeah even though they look good on the counter I probably would not have them out if they are getting taken. Putting fake ones there is a good idea. I think the problem could be that guests have to pass through to get to their room. Is there a way to close part of the kitchen? I usually put out the cookies and tea items in the dining room for the guests and they know that area is for them to take from. Since I live at the B & B I am usually always around if they have questions or need something. If asked and if I have enough I would be more than happy to help them out and by giving them a banana or other fruit from the kitchen during non breakfast hours. Like you I need to make sure that I have enough for breakfast. Lately I have had guests taking things they shouldn't and it is very frustrating. Some of this I will never be able to control. One guest last month took the nice wooden hangers home with them from their room closest. They took all the tea and sugar packets from the room...and there were a lot! Took all the toilet paper, a big bottle of bubble bath for the tub and also the rubber ducky. They checked out and I let it go. It will all even out...sometimes guests don't use any of the amenities in the rooms.
 

gillumhouse

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I made baskets for each guestroom and put 2 bananas and up to 4 apples in the basket and put it either on the dresser or on the mantle for the guests. Some take it and some don't. It does not cost that much but it IS appreciated that it is there "if they get the munchies". By putting it in their rooms, there is no question about what is for taking.
 

Samster

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No, it didn't happen to us. I had plenty of stuff out for guests though - bowl of fresh fruit at the check in area, chocolates and hard candies in candy dishes at various places in the common areas, snack baskets & turndown chocolates in the rooms, and guest fridges with all kinds of soft beverages and water. And.....guests didn't have a reason to enter our kitchen PLUS we had a private sign on the kitchen door. I use to kid the guests and tell them that we didn't want guests to come in the kitchen "where the magic happens". lol!
Since your kitchen is accessible to guests, is there any way that you can put a tasteful sign in some kind of picture frame on the counter that says something that would indicate to the guests that you need particular items to prepare their breakfast? Or, put a fruit bowl in the dining room and point out that is where they can help themselves?
I don't think that a lot of guests realize that most B&Bs don't have unlimited storage for the items needed to prepare their breakfast or that we plan carefully with the freshest ingredients for the quantity of what we're preparing for them.
 

Don Draper

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I would NOT be letting guests walk through my kitchen. But if your setup forces you to do this then I would definitely keep anything you don't want taken under wraps.
 

EmptyNest

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Sorry, I never happened to us either as our area was private. We always had plenty of fruit, drinks and other goodies out in our guest lounge area that they could help themselves.
If there is no way to keep your area private. I would never leave anything out that you intend to use or people will just help themselves. We have all learned that from Mort and her open kitchen issues :-(
 

Morticia

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I have an open kitchen, too. We had to put locks on all the cabinets and now I have a sign on the fridge and on the kitchen counter that tells guests 'Off Limits'.
In your case, if they are here any more nights I would put out fake fruit.
You CANNOT leave items out within the reach of guests without telling them the boundaries. As in, 'This is my kitchen, guests are not permitted here.' (At all. For any reason. Yes, you.)
Sorry, just read that guests have to go thru the kitchen area. So, in that case you have to be clear about what is for guests ('Everything on this table/counter/buffet is for your use. Everything else is mine.') My sign says, 'Please respect our privacy.'
 

muirford

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If you like the look of fresh fruit on your table, put out a bowl of lemons or limes, maybe a pineapple (if the bowl's big enough). Keep fruit for breakfast or yourself out of sight.
 

EmptyNest

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If you like the look of fresh fruit on your table, put out a bowl of lemons or limes, maybe a pineapple (if the bowl's big enough). Keep fruit for breakfast or yourself out of sight..
I like that idea a lot. Most won't take lemons, limes or pineapple..or if they do..they are desparate.
A simple sign stating something like " Health Dept regulations do not allow guests in the kitchen. If you need something, please check with the innkeeper.
 

Copperhead

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If you like the look of fresh fruit on your table, put out a bowl of lemons or limes, maybe a pineapple (if the bowl's big enough). Keep fruit for breakfast or yourself out of sight..
Like the lemon / lime idea and it will leave a wonderful clean fragrence in the air as well.
 

Samster

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If you like the look of fresh fruit on your table, put out a bowl of lemons or limes, maybe a pineapple (if the bowl's big enough). Keep fruit for breakfast or yourself out of sight..
That's a great idea about the lemons/limes and pineapple! And then locking everything up that's for the innkeeper's use, if that's possible.
 

Proud Texan

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If you keep doing things the same way, you're going to always get the same results. You are going to have to figure out someway to limit guest access to your food stuffs. Do you have a lockable pantry?
Hide the peaches. Out of sight, out of mind.
 

Basil Fawlty

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I agree that setting boundries with folks - both socially and within the house is a difficult area. A nice sign next to or - on! - the bowl of fruit might do the trick. I like the idea of fresh fruit in the rooms - distracts from the bowl of breakfast ingrediants! If guests pass through the kitchen to their rooms - signs on the 'fridge, pantry, etc., let them know what is public about the room and what is private.
- Kimberly, Green Cat Guest House, Poulsbo WA
 

Highlands John

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I have an open kitchen, too. We had to put locks on all the cabinets and now I have a sign on the fridge and on the kitchen counter that tells guests 'Off Limits'.
In your case, if they are here any more nights I would put out fake fruit.
You CANNOT leave items out within the reach of guests without telling them the boundaries. As in, 'This is my kitchen, guests are not permitted here.' (At all. For any reason. Yes, you.)
Sorry, just read that guests have to go thru the kitchen area. So, in that case you have to be clear about what is for guests ('Everything on this table/counter/buffet is for your use. Everything else is mine.') My sign says, 'Please respect our privacy.'.
Morticia said:
My sign says, 'Please respect our privacy.'
I had to put this in our information pack in the guest rooms because we were fed up with people wandering around our home uninvited.
This is a B&B, but like most UK B&Bs it's our home too. And yet despite a sign on the front door saying "Please ring bell for attention" we've had people march right in, ignore the bell and sign in the hall saying "please ring for attention" and then wander from room to room to find someone.
We had people help themselves to things in our kitchen (which unlike others here is not necessary for guest access), we've had people march into our lounge (which says "Private") at 10pm to ask us questions about how they get to places the next day (why it couldn't wait until breakfast I've no idea), we've had to put a lock on the store cupboard outside the guest rooms because people were helping themselves to biscuits.
We have friends with a B&B who work Monday and Tuesday, they do a reduced rate these days and leave guests a continental breakfast out. They were telling me today that people this week had been in their fridge, opened a brand new pack of cheese and eaten half of it, even though it was not part of their breakfast.
The cheek and audacity of some people amazes me.
 

Morticia

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I have an open kitchen, too. We had to put locks on all the cabinets and now I have a sign on the fridge and on the kitchen counter that tells guests 'Off Limits'.
In your case, if they are here any more nights I would put out fake fruit.
You CANNOT leave items out within the reach of guests without telling them the boundaries. As in, 'This is my kitchen, guests are not permitted here.' (At all. For any reason. Yes, you.)
Sorry, just read that guests have to go thru the kitchen area. So, in that case you have to be clear about what is for guests ('Everything on this table/counter/buffet is for your use. Everything else is mine.') My sign says, 'Please respect our privacy.'.
Morticia said:
My sign says, 'Please respect our privacy.'
I had to put this in our information pack in the guest rooms because we were fed up with people wandering around our home uninvited.
This is a B&B, but like most UK B&Bs it's our home too. And yet despite a sign on the front door saying "Please ring bell for attention" we've had people march right in, ignore the bell and sign in the hall saying "please ring for attention" and then wander from room to room to find someone.
We had people help themselves to things in our kitchen (which unlike others here is not necessary for guest access), we've had people march into our lounge (which says "Private") at 10pm to ask us questions about how they get to places the next day (why it couldn't wait until breakfast I've no idea), we've had to put a lock on the store cupboard outside the guest rooms because people were helping themselves to biscuits.
We have friends with a B&B who work Monday and Tuesday, they do a reduced rate these days and leave guests a continental breakfast out. They were telling me today that people this week had been in their fridge, opened a brand new pack of cheese and eaten half of it, even though it was not part of their breakfast.
The cheek and audacity of some people amazes me.
.
The no ringing of the doorbell on entry is what finally got us to install a keypad. The door is always locked. Guests cannot unlock it when they step out and leave it open for anyone to wander in. They CAN leave the door wide open, but that is a whole other problem!
We've considered an alarm or a padlock on our fridge. A lock on the laundry room door was in order after a family stayed with a bunch of kids who kept going in there.
We've had guests pack our fridge full of their own items even tho the guest fridge is easier to get at. No, their items could not co-mingle with other guests' items. We take it all out in the morning and put it in the guest fridge. Yes, there is a sign on the fridge and at the kitchen entry. Some people are, as you say, cheeky.
 

Banana

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Would it work to make it part of your speech upon check in? "Although you must pass through the kitchen, anything within it is not for guest use." And yes, unfortunately, a sign may have to be put up also.
 

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