Cleaning Your Home for the Holidays

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

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Tis the season for prepping our homes for the holidays which means you have a few weeks to get started before the chaos of decorating, gift wrapping, and hosting takes place.  The last thing we should worry about when enjoying the holidays is how to get our house clean quickly.  No one wants to be rushing around panicking when really we all just want to relax and enjoy time with our friends and family. 

I have a neat and tidy home normally so luckily the most I ever do is just scrubbing or cleaning surfaces.  I never have to waste time on clutter these days.  But it wasn't always like this which is why I'm going to give you some advice on how to clean your home for the holidays so you no longer have to struggle every year.

First thing's first -  remove all of the loose things that are either stacked or freely sitting around the surfaces of your home that your guests will see.  

Start with a box or bin, and walking around your living and dining room (since that's where guests will spend the most time) and toss everything in that doesn't belong there.  You'll probably have a fair amount of magazines, toy packaging, papers, and mail. 

Then purge whatever can be thrown away.  If it's something that needs to be dealt with now, DO IT NOW.  It's the only way to get it out of the way without forgetting about it later.  

Everything else remaining in the box can be placed in it's proper home.  
You need to dust the surfaces of your home both high and low.  This gives it that nice shiny sparkle when guests enter. 

Start with the high places like floor lamps, hanging light fixtures, and book shelves then move on to the lower surfaces like coffee tables, end tables, and baseboards. 
The kitchen is one of the most important and used rooms in your home and as a guest, it's always nice to see a sparkly clean area where the food you'll eat is being prepared.  Remove everything from your counters and use a multi-surface spray.
Then tackle the appliances. Your sink and stove top get the most damage and grease built up around them.  

I even go crazy and do the sides of my refrigerator and my vent hood. 
The sink should always be cleaned thoroughly which means removing soap scum where you let your dish soap bottle sit and the water spots left around the sink after you rinse dishes or wash your hands. 
Alas, it's not the most glamorous room in the house but it's certainly the most commonly used by guests.  Obviously a clean shower and toilet bowl are essential but what about the sink and top of the toilet? 
Remove everything, spray and wipe, then replace all your decor or toiletries.  If you have faux plants like I do, wipe them down as well since you don't even want to know what kind of germs hop on there.   
The sink is the other important part and not only should it be free of clutter (that means put all your products IN your medicine cabinet) but it should also have a nice smooth feel and shiny look.  

I clean the actual faucet really well so that it has a nice shine to it.  Then I do the sink itself including the top of the drain.  Guests will feel cleaner when they see a shiny sink.  

Now that you've cleaned all the taller surfaces of your home and likely knocked some dirt and dust onto the floor, you can vacuum.  Make sure to get up high for any cobwebs in the corners of your sealing and always vacuum your sofa and underneath the cushions.  
If you have any hard floors in your home (likely the kitchen and bathroom) now is the time for you to give those a nice scrub.  Since you've removed all loose debris, dust, and hair, you won't have to worry about collecting all of that as you wash.  

I have a wet mop that I use to get that nice reflective shine on all my hardwood floors and in the kitchen and bathroom. 

Make sure this is the last thing you do (usually the morning of the day your guests will arrive) so that any dirt that comes from you running around cleaning will be gone.  

If you stay focused on this process in this order, it will likely only take you an hour or 2 and you can get back to enjoying the calm before the storm. 

After your guests leave, you can do an easy wipe down of counters and even vacuum the floor for good measure. 

By taking the time to properly prepare your home for guests during the holiday season you can alleviate stress and not have to do everything at the last minute.  

Are you hosting guests in your home this year for the holidays? Let me know below!  

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