OK, Friends. You’re hosting a last-minute holiday party with a capital “H,” and your house is in a bit of disarray with a capital “D.” Where do you even begin?
We’ve. Been. There. (40 guests for Thanksgiving and all the entrees… why not?) And we’re here with our TOP 10 TIPS for preparing your house while still maintaining your sanity.
It won’t come as any surprise that we’re all about being PRACTICAL.
TIP # 1: Designate + Clear The Main Spaces
You may feel the urge to clean your whole house, but we want hosting to be as reasonable for you as possible.
Focus on the areas where you guests will gather — generally that’s the kitchen, dining room, and living room. And of course, don’t forget the bathroom!
We suggest creating a TEMPORARY holding zone in your home where you can place items that are cluttering the areas where your party guests will be spending time. Then, set a date and time after the party to manage that collection and relocate those items back to where they belong. Mark your calendar today to hold yourself accountable for this!
TIP # 2: Restock The Bathroom
Make sure your hand soap is refilled, a fresh roll of toilet paper is on the dispenser and your hand towels are fresh. A lit candle and/or some fresh greenery are extra credit — but a clean and well-stocked bathroom should take total precedence!
TIP # 3: Clean The Floors
We’re not talking about floor wax or rug cleaner… we’re talking about grabbing the vacuum and making sure there are no visible crumbs or pet hair. The goal is to have a floor that’s presentable — but it doesn’t have to be perfect. You’re likely going to want to do a deep floor cleaning after the party, so don’t make yourself crazy (twice!)
TIP # 4: Ditch The Dishes
Having an empty sink and/or dishwasher is going to make the end-of-night clean up that much easier. And it creates an open space for guests to drop their dishes, instead of leaving them spread around your house.
TIP # 5: Create A Guest Drop Zone
A great thing to consider before you host is where your guests will store their coats and belongings.
If you have a coat closet, create some open space and just be sure that nothing will tumble out.
If you are opening up a guest room for storage, make the bed in that room and turn on a dim light, such as a lamp, to guide folks efficiently into (and out of) the room.
TIP # 6: Empty The Trash
This one’s pretty self-explanatory, but sometimes it can be overlooked in the last-minute melee. Do this at least 30 minutes before your start time, so even those early guests won’t catch you taking out the trash.
TIP # 7: Add Some Accents
As we noted above, lighting a candle in the bathroom or placing some fresh greenery or flowers on your surfaces can make your house feel extra warm and welcoming.
Consider any little touches that might make your seasonal party feel special.
TIP # 8: Make Sure You Have Extras
Stock up on anything you might run out of, such as coffee, tea, ice and TP… you don’t want to have to run out to the store at the last minute!
But if you do encounter that scenario… we’re all about Postmates.
TIP # 9: Schedule Your Own Prep Time
Sometimes we put off getting ourselves ready because we don’t want to be schlepping trash in our new holiday outfit… but there’s nothing like the panic of hearing a doorbell ring when you’ve just stepped out of the shower.
Try to be ready at least an hour ahead of your party’s start time, so you can be available should any of your guests arrive earlier than expected.
TIP # 10: Focus On The Big Things
Ultimately, people won’t care about the stack of boxes in the corner or the piles of paperwork on your desk. Your friends and family just want to have a good time, so if you’re going to focus on anything, focus on the experience — the food, the music and the atmosphere.
And most of all, spend your energy being PRESENT and in the moment. We promise you won’t regret it!
Wishing you + yours the happiest holiday season yet!
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