First of all, don’t take things too seriously. Don’t sit around fretting about whether your guests are going to find that spot on the rug or that stain on the wall. They’re more likely to be more interested in having a time with you and your family, not acting like barracks inspectors for the drill instructor.
It doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t go that extra mile to make the house tidy. I fyou do expect guests of a good number and need to prep up the family room and guest rooms and such, then taking care of these areas should be easy if you’ve not neglected them for a while. Often, we’ll have that guest room or guest bath just sitting there the last time someone visited. You might not have given it a good dusting or vacuuming and you might have left some of the previous guests’ leftover belongings and tracks. Well, the first thing you do is survey the areas and predict what tools you’ll need and how much. Can you get away with a light dusting and vacuuming or will you need to go all out to get the job done.
To be on the safe side, just give the entire area or areas the once over full. Wipe down walls, cabinets, showers, toilets basins, and give the floors a good mopping as well as vacuuming any rugs. Dust will have settled on curtains, blinds and even light bulbs. A simple dusting should fix that. Test the outleets and lights to make sure they’re working and run the water for a while in the sinks and showers to flush out any backed up residue and rust.
Check for hidden treasures the pets may have hidden in small places as well as tos the kids might have left laying around. Once you’ve done all that, it’s time to hit the rest of the house and give it the once over.
Don’t do it too far in advance or the areas will just get messy again. Holidays call for lots of preparations regarding meal preps and decorations and organizing the furniture to accommodate guests. You might have to bring in more chairs or a bigger table ou’ve had sitting in the attic, basement, or the garage. If so, then you’ll have to clean them thoroughl too. Appliances like washing machines, dishwashers, stoves, and refigerators should be spotless. Toss out old food and such and make room for the holiday treats and beverages.
Keep pets in check during this time so they don’t mess up right after you’ve tidied up and the same goes for small children and clumbsy family members. If the weather outside is frightful you might have to prepare for that especially if it’s windy or wet and slushy. That outside debris and dirt will be blown in every time you open a door or window or tracked in by foot. Have a good household spray cleaner, rags and paper towels handy and place them strategically in every busy room. This way you can tackle those spills and such immediately and not let them set where the may cause permanent stains or discoloration.
Finally, get the family involved with the home cleaning and holiday cleaning. Play your favorite music, usually holiday music to brighten the atmosphere. You’ll find that such chores are fun and easier when everyone pitches in and are smiling.
Image credit: Leonid Ikan