Tips on how to keep a full house tidy these holidays
One of the best things about the holiday season is being surrounded by those that you love – and that can mean lots of visitors. Having extra people in the house can help when it comes to preparing meals and tidying up, but it can also mean a lot of extra tidying up. Here are some tips on how to best manage a houseful of visitors, keep the mess under control and still immerse yourself in the holiday spirit.
BEFORE EVERYONE ARRIVES
- Use storage containers. Look around the house and pack away anything that doesn’t serve a purpose, and (if you’re expecting lots of children) anything that you don’t want to get broken. Store these items neatly in boxes and put these in the bedroom cupboards — out of reach of clumsy elbows and curious young children.
- Be creative with your furniture. By simply re-arranging a couch here and a table there, you could potentially find space that you never knew existed.
- Get rid of things you don’t use. Before everyone arrives, think about the things that are broken, damaged or no longer in use. Throw unusable items away and give away items you think might come in handy to someone else.
- Give your family specific tasks. Chat to your family and decide which chores everyone will be responsible for while the guests are visiting. Things will run a lot smoother once you know who is washing up after each meal, and whose turn it is to tidy the lounge.
WHILE THE GUESTS ARE THERE
- Clean as you go. Fill the sink with some hot, soapy water as you are about to start cooking. It’s much easier to wipe things down and rinse them off straight after they’ve been used. Cleaning as you go will save you time and will allow you to have the tools ready for the next time you need them. You can also put the pots and pans into the sink to start soaking while you eat.
- Label your guests’ glasses. Get some nice tags that you can tie around glasses and mugs. Not only will people feel special when they get their drinks in personalised glasses, but it will also ensure they reuse their cups instead of using a new one each time they drink something. If there are lots of children around, encourage them to decorate their own nametags as a fun activity.
- Keep your visitors busy. Families and friends are more than willing to help if you ask them. Instead of sitting chatting, catch up while you prepare the food together. Ask them to help you chop ingredients, or if you have been cooking for a while, ask them to start washing up. You know what they say… many hands make light work!
- Do quick five-minute clean ups. Any time you stand up to fetch something or make a trip to the bathroom, tidy up along the way by picking things up and putting them in their right places. Not only will this help keep your home clean while your guests are there, but it will make things easier for you when you start tidying up later.
The holidays are a wonderful time for family, friends and good food. Using these tips will help to ensure that spending time with them is a wonderful, relaxing and rewarding experience.
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