Whether you are hosting friends and family at Christmas or not, it's a great time to do a quick refresh on your spring or fall cleaning so that the house is sparkly for the big day and the new year! And with just one week away, it's time to pare down the list to what is necessary and what works fast.
Here are some important tips, shortcuts and our favorite tools for cleaning the house before Christmas.
Write out all of the cleaning jobs you can think of onto small sticky notes and stick them on the fridge. Be sure to include jobs appropriate for everyone in the family, from the littlest members to your spouse. Ask them to choose one sticky note a day, complete the task and then recycle the note. Adding a few details on the note about how you expect the job to be done or to what standards helps avoid fighting afterward and a hassled mom or dad, which brings us to our next point.
Christmas is a holiday where you can let go a bit in the tidyness department. It is not like Thanksgiving in the formal dining way. Buffets should be embraced and accepted, and remember that the living room will have bits of wrapping paper, bows and presents strewn about it all day anyway so don't spend a lot of time cleaning in there pre-party. Instead…
Focus on the areas that will definitely be noticed. Grab a pencil and paper and walk thru the house just like your guests will, writing down any problem spots as well as rooms to skip. For example, if your bedroom is upstairs and you don't anticipate guests wandering up there, don't spend time dusting that room. A simple vacuum and making of the bed will be plenty.
Disposable Cleaning Wipes - We don't like to use disposable anything nowadays, but if once a year you have to pull out the disposable cleaning wipes right before a hectic and major holiday, so be it! They are a stress-busting lifesaver, and can be used almost anywhere, from the kitchen counters to the bathrooms for an almost effortless last minute cleaning job. And if you still can't get over the disposable part, simply spray your favorite cleaner onto a rag and go over those surfaces yourself, then toss the rag in the wash!
Clean Tables Off First - We're talking about end tables, sofa tables, anything where clutter has gathered (especially those bills on the kitchen counter) because it is one of the first things guests will notice. Normally we wouldn't advocate for shoving these items in a drawer, but at this time of year when you've got so much else going on, there is nothing wrong with stacking all of that mail into a drawer or file folder to hibernate for a week (you weren't dealing with it anyway, right).
Floor Care - You won't be able to get away without vacuuming the carpet, that's a must, especially where pine needles have fallen. But if you have hardwood, tile or linoleum floors, do a quick sweep, then use a hot wet washcloth on problem areas. There isn't much reason to do a full mopping anyway since the first few guests of the day will be tracking mud inside anyway.
Microfiber Cloths – Keep them in every room for quick wipe downs on the go.
Shop Vac – A shop vac can solve many messy home dilemmas, from cool ashes in the fireplace to leaves in the rain gutter. Keep one around for year-round quicker cleaning access!
Steam Cleaners – Easy to use and easy on the environment, a steam cleaner is a wonderful investment for the home.
Favorite and Best Selling Cleaning Tools:
Check back with us tomorrow for some great hostess gift ideas!