One of the great gifts of the holidays is opening your home to the people you love. Entertaining can be stressful, but, with some simple decluttering in key areas, you can create spaces where your guests feel at home. And you’ll feel more relaxed when your guests are comfortable. Get started today to ring in the holidays in peace!
Overwhelmed at the idea of doing it yourself? Don’t forget I’m always here to help!
1. Create a Welcoming Entryway
Your entryway welcomes your guests into your home. To make it feel more inviting:
Clear out mail, packages, library books and put them where they belong.
Put fresh flowers or a simple, seasonal decoration on an entry table.
Make sure your guests have a space to put their shoes and hang coats and bags. Relocate kids’ shoes for the time being to make space on your rack, place extra hangers in your coat closet and, if needed, designated a bedroom for coats.
An uncluttered entry space will greet your guests with calm and let them know that you have made space for them in your home.
2. Take Stock in the Kitchen
Whether or not you have a formal dining room, guests love to gather in the kitchen. Make the space more comfortable for dining or pre-dinner chatting by clearing the counters and tidying up. The less clutter, the better!
A holiday meal will be much more relaxing for the host, too, with some pre-holiday prep:
Check your fridge for expired ingredients to remove and replace them.
Restock the pantry with staples, including special ingredients for holiday recipes and baking supplies.
Pick up seasonal snacks and treats.
Stock up on alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
This is a good time of year to move baking items and roasting platters from higher shelves and into easy reach. The ice cream maker and grilling tools can go on a high shelf for the season.
3. Set the Dining Table
Whether you serve your festive meal in the dining room or right there at the kitchen table, make sure you have what you need to set the table so you’re not rushing around to fill in gaps on the day of your event:
Count table linens, place mats, wine glasses, silverware, and napkins and, replace what’s missing.
Locate special serving items, like the salad bowl you loaned to a friend. If you need special items like a gravy boat ( I love this one by my friend MaryMar at MMClay) or pie plate, buy them ahead of time.
Consider festive decor in your dining space. Touches as simple as seasonal flowers and candles make the season bright!
Remember, your dining area doesn’t have to be fancy to feel festive!
4. Freshen up the Bathroom
At some point in every holiday visit, everyone needs to powder their nose! Make sure the bathroom is clean and peaceful with a little pre-holiday prep:
Stock up on toilet paper, hand soap, lotion and hand towels.
Create a basket of travel-sized toiletries for overnight guests. This is a great way to use hotel giveaways.
Empty the trash.
Clean, clean, clean!
Guests will appreciate having what they need on hand, and you’ll enjoy the benefits of a clean, well stocked and organized bathroom long after they’re gone.
5. Turn Down the Sheets
For a lucky few, the end of the meal won’t be the end of the visit. Whether you have a guest bedroom or a comfy couch, prepare for overnight guests by creating a cozy retreat:
Make the bed with fresh linens, extra pillows and blankets.
Set out fresh towels.
If you have a guest room, clear a drawer for their things and the bedside table for their books.
If you’re feeling extra welcoming, create a kit with ear plugs, sleep mask and a decorative candle for guests to enjoy.
When it comes to overnight guests, a few thoughtful touches will let them know you’re glad they’re there!
There’s nothing like welcoming friends and loved ones into your home to make the holiday season warm and bright. Keep it simple, calm and uncluttered for a visit you’ll all celebrate and enjoy!
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