Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years’ Eve – three of the holidays that most everyone looks forwards to, yet dreads at the same time. We look forward to spending time with friends and family, celebrating the season’s magic, and the feasting of turkey dinners with all the fixings. But the visions of holiday visitors and carolers make us cringe and smile at the same time.
When you’re the host, the possibilities are endless, but so are the stressors. Especially as you find your schedule full of shopping, baking, cooking, cleaning, planning, and checking your Naughty or Nice List, not once, but twice. If you find yourself stressing about not having enough time to get everything done, know that you’re not alone, as I’ve been there myself – truth be told, most of us struggle with holiday stress each year.
There are ways, however, to ensure you’re able to reduce your holiday stress so that you can enjoy the company of others, the festivities, the feasts, and THE deserts. Included in the following tips, is professional carpet cleaning, as having a clean and sanitized carpet can make a great first impression on your guests. As well as keep you from pulling your hair out at the first mention of a spill.
1) It is important to make a to-do list, but also to assign a day and a time when the items on said list will be taken care of, otherwise it will just become yet another wish list in a pile of many. Make a to-do list for everyday leading up to the big day to avoid encountering last minute stressors.
2) Black Friday shopping? Make sure you plan your shopping route in advance to ensure a productive night/morning. I personally recommend downloading a map of each store your visiting and writing in your items. Always schedule more time than you think it will take. Crowds are in the thousands, lines are longer than usual, and parking is limited.
3) Your home’s carpet is the first thing most guests see, so make a good first impression, by having them professionally steam cleaned. This will ensure that your home looks and smells good. And don’t forget the stain protection! Having stain protection applied can protect party fouls from ruining your holiday cheer.
4) ‘Tis the season to cook holiday feasts and bake endless treats. Your kitchen is command central during the holidays. Make sure it’s ready for guests by decluttering and organizing essential kitchen items – baking trays, utensils, dishes, and more. Consider moving the coffee pot into the dining area or family room to reduce some of the traffic.
5) Spruce up your home’s exterior for the holidays. Rake up any leaves, sprinkle salt on the walkways, lay out a new Welcome mat, and set out festive holiday decorations: harvest decorations for Thanksgiving and winter decorations for Christmas. Wreaths, strings of lights, and potted plants/poinsettias are all great ideas.
6) To avoid accidental mishaps, reorganize your living room furniture for the holidays, by eliminating clutter, arranging chairs in a circle (it encourages conversation), and carving out a special place for the focal point: the Christmas tree. Set out pretty decorations and fragrant candles or potpourri.