By REBEKAH JONES
The holiday season can be very stressful at times and holiday cleaning adds a whole new layer to the normal craziness. It’s important to be organized and strategic when cleaning for the holidays and with the five simple steps below, you’ll be drinking eggnog and watching a movie by the fire before you know it.
Create a cleaning schedule/ plan
With all of the other planning that has to be done, cleaning can often be pushed to the bottom of the priority list. If you’re someone who worries about time management, creating a schedule is really important. There are different ways to clean for the holidays, from a quick one-hour clean to a more thorough week-long clean. The week-long clean may sound daunting, but it’s really just allotting enough time each day to do a deep clean of one or two rooms throughout the house. That way, you don’t feel overwhelmed when you realize you need to clean the whole house the day before grandma and grandpa come over for Christmas dinner.
Writing out a list helps with a cleaning schedule. Make sure to give yourself a break between each task you take on. For example, after vacuuming, dusting, polishing and reorganizing the living room, take a 45 minute coffee or food break before moving onto the kitchen.
Organize, organize, organize
Before you start in on the deep cleaning, it’s important to declutter your home. Nothing is more frustrating than trying to clean around household junk. Get rid of things you don’t need and put everything else in it’s place. Cleaning will be easier and a whole lot faster if you do!
Keep your all-star cleaning products close by
Any household cleaning product that is used daily should be out and ready to use. It’s impossible to see a wine spill coming or know when your baby nephew is going to start throwing his food. It’s also important to utilize these products if you don’t plan on doing a deep clean in the main areas of your home. The easiest clean can be done with a Swiffer brush, Clorox wipes, glass cleaner and a vacuum. In the matter of an hour, the room will be in great shape for a party or dinner.
Set out anything you can ahead of time
Set out dishes, silverware, glassware, snacks and gifts ahead of time so you can focus on other things. If you’re scrambling around to find the missing wine glass or extra throw blanket, it’s going to be difficult to enjoy the night with family or friends. Making sure that you have everything possible prepped as guests start arriving is crucial so that when the party really starts, you can enjoy it.
Take a step back
This last step is often skipped over, but quite crucial to do. After all of the cleaning hoopla, take a step back and appraise your home. Go into each room and look at the finished result. Are the pillows fluffed? Beds made? Windows wiped down? Festive books or magazines laid out on the coffee table? Now is the time to add the final touches before guests arrive. Light a candle, add a few more spruce leaves to the dining room table centerpiece, relax and enjoy.