Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming up, and if you’re opening your home to welcome friends and family, you’ll have to tackle a few chores before they arrive. Here are four things to consider when preparing your home for guests:
Before you think about decorating the house, you’ll need to dust, sweep, and vacuum. Prioritize the high-traffic areas: the entrance, dining room, and restrooms. If you have guests staying in town after dinner, make sure their rooms are clean and cozy as well. If you have a hall closet, store its contents in an out-of-view spot to accommodate guests’ coats and luggage.
In the kitchen
Communicate with your guests about who’s bringing what, then clear the necessary room and counter-space. You can make some instant storage space by removing any leftovers from the fridge, freezer, and pantry. You may want to prepare a few dishes the day before the holiday, then store them in the fridge. You’ll want to keep the oven available for the main course that morning. Try to store the ingredients of each dish together to make cooking prep a little less hectic.
Keep a deep bowl or bucket filled with warm, sudsy water in or by the sink to make the dish-washing process smoother. If you have pets, make sure that can’t reach any trash containers that may have castoff bits of turkey or bone.
Set the stage
Aim to have the whole table set and decorated the night before the big day. In addition to laying out the plates, glasses, napkins, and silverware, the host may bring some color to the table with simple decorations. Flowers are a classic centerpiece option, but don’t go overboard. Table décor needs to stay low enough so that guests tan communicate uninterrupted and pass plates without navigating a complicated display.
Candles can provide some warm light, but opt for the unscented variety at the dinner table. Guests shouldn’t be distracted from the appetizing aromas by sandalwood and evergreen.
While the kid’s table can certainly benefit from a little decoration, it’s also a likely scene for extra cleanup. An inexpensive, easy-to-clean tablecloth should suffice, or you can lay down wrapping paper with crayons. If you want to add some festive touches, a bowl or cornucopia of real fruit will both fit the season and offer the kids some nutritious sides.
Make overnight guests feel at home
If any of your guests are visiting from out of town, they’ll appreciate fresh sheets in their sleeping quarters, and clean towels in the restroom (keeping some extra toiletries in the cabinet couldn’t hurt, either). If you have multiple guests, or a full family staying, consider providing a surge protector/power strip so they all can charge phones and other devices.
With all the work that goes into prepping for a holiday, remember why you do it in the first place. In the midst of the cooking and cleaning, it’s important to spend quality time with your loved ones. Be thankful for every moment with them, whether it’s working in the kitchen, dining at the table, or resting in the living room after the feast. And if anyone offers to help with the dishes, say yes!
If you want to celebrate future holidays in a new home, give us a call. We’ll work with you through the financing process.