Many of us have busy lifestyles even during the stay-at-home challenges of the Coronavirus. We might go out less. We might entertain less. We may let the housekeeping go a bit.
With the holidays upon us, whether you will be hosting just your immediate family or if you will be entertaining a few more family members or guests, take these 6 easy steps to prep your home for food and fellowship.
This is our favorite step—probably because it’s easily achieved (we hope!) and very fulfilling.
It’s time to get rid of the old and bring in some new. You can start in the entryway of your home. What clutter can you remove? Can you find better homes for shoes, backpacks, toys and umbrellas? In the living room, remove old magazines, shelve books appropriately, tidy up coasters and cords. Can you hide those remotes? What items do you no longer need or use that you can donate?
2. Start fresh by cleaning.
Some of us clean or tidy up daily while others make time over the weekend. The title of this blog does contain the word, “easy,” so if you’re not ready for the difficult work of a deep clean (like mopping under the beds and disinfecting showerheads), then we suggest knocking out a quick clean at the very least, which will do a lot to freshen up your space for the holidays.
Some easy things to do in the least amount of time include the following.
- Dust your picture frames, windowsills, ledges, knickknacks, and tables. For hard surfaces, use our Real Clean Floors cleaner or another wood-friendly alternative.
- In your kitchen how does that fridge look? Is it cluttered with magnets, recipe ideas, old reminders or postcards from trips in the long ago past? If so, it’s definitely time to remove the old items and tidy up those magnets, some of which may have been in hiding after all!
While cleaning the usual spots like the top and front of your range and disinfecting the sink, don’t forget the fronts of the fridge and dishwasher.
- For the holidays if you are making more food than usual, then you’ll want to make sure you have your culinary artillery ready. From baking pans and blenders to cookie cutters and coffee-pod makers, make sure everything is clean and in working order. If you plan to use special dishes for your guests, save yourself the headache of doing it last minute, and wash your plates and flatware beforehand while you are cleaning up your other kitchen items.
- For mopping wood floors, tile or linoleum, consider our effective mop kit. With the ready-to-use spray, you can clean and protect your floors with a solution that leaves a soft orange peel scent when finished.
3. Revitalize with enticing smells.
Science tells us that scents make positive emotional sense. According to Theresa Molnar of the Sense of Smell Institute (no, we did not make this up), “Scents can have positive effects on mood, stress reduction, sleep enhancement, self-confidence, and physical and cognitive performance .”
An easy way to achieve this is of course through scented candles. At the holidays, top choices are warm, seasonal blends like pumpkin spice and apple cinnamon. We also like smooth-scented candles with varieties such as cardamom with mimosa and fir with rosemary. If you’re after some big-time relaxation, we’d recommend considering lavender and sandalwood, both known for their chilled-out qualities. If you want a more peppy feeling, then by all means go with peppermint.
4. Add a touch of cozy.
We like the Danish sensibility that is pretty well known these days even though it looks tough to pronounce. Yes, hygee (pronounced hoo-guh).
Scandinavian folks have to survive long winters, and from that they have achieved a calm in the presence of a soothing and relaxed atmosphere.
How do you do this at the holidays?
Use the aforementioned candles, and as we suggest, keep it calm. Don’t go too crazy on scents. Fire up those lamps and avoid those overheads.
Place throw pillows and blankets on your couch. This is an easy, lovely touch for added warmth and coziness.
5. Maintain visual appeal.
If you’ve followed some of the steps above, then you’ve achieved less clutter and added the scents of candles to your space. We hope you have picked up a nice throw pillow or rug to add to your home’s ambience.
Add a holiday wreath or a new piece of art from a local artist if you can. Start on the holiday decorations early by finding those tubs and boxes. Ensure ornaments and lights are in working order. Hopefully, Santa and his reindeer didn’t take a hit during last year’s exit to the attic or basement.
6. Make a playlist to complement the atmosphere.
William Congreve, a British playwright and poet, once wrote “Music has charms to soothe a savage beast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak.”
Hopefully, you won’t have any beasts around at your holidays or twisting oak floorboards, but we do hope you have some music to soothe the soul.
You can find plenty of holiday music playlists on Spotify or Apple music, but why not create your own? If you want to add visual flavor, on your screen you can stream a playlist from YouTube where some contributors have added holiday-themed settings.
Get in touch today.
If you need any holiday playlist suggestions, cleaning products or wood floor samples, please don’t hesitate to contact us today via our website or by phone, 877.215.1831.
1. “The Hidden Force of Fragrance.” Psychology Today. 1 Nov. 2007. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/articles/200711/the-hidden-force-fragrance