dont-stop-decorating-holiday-decor-ideas-for-every-nook-and-cranny-1From tackling holiday stains cleaning the crevices most commonly inspected by mothers-in-law, keeping a clean home around the holidays can seem like an impossible task. Between entertaining unexpected guests and hosting get-togethers with friends and family, having a clean home is never more important than it is around the holidays.

“The holidays are a fun, but often stressful time of year. People are busy shopping, cooking and volunteering, and have little time to keep a clean and tidy home,” says Debra Johnson, home cleaning expert for Merry Maids. “The good news is that there are simple tips and strategies to getting a home in tip-top shape – from being selective with holiday decor to having a laundry closet packed with your trusty cleaning solutions – making cleaning easier and far less stressful.”

Johnson’s secrets for a spic and span home include:

Double-duty holiday decor – Holiday decor is essential to giving spaces a more festive appearance, but if can also double the amount of housework you have each day. Give your holiday decor a second life – fill a vase or hurricane with sparkly tinsel leftovers that may have fallen to the floor and use it as a festive centerpiece. Coal can serve as a great odor absorber, too.

Holiday stain fighters – While red wine, cranberry and turkey gravy are real crowd-pleasers, they aren’t so kind to upholstery and carpets. If you notice that one of your guests left the evidence behind, blot it right away with a white cloth until all of the liquid has been absorbed. If the stain’s dry, whip up a quick solution of dishwashing liquid (1tbsp), white vinegar (1tbsp) and warm water (2 cups) to remove the stain.

Last-minute cleaning tricks – If your home needs tidying before guests arrive, set aside 15 minutes to make your home appear like you’ve spent a full day cleaning it.

1. Grab a microfiber cloth and broom and set your kitchen timer.

2. Sweep up the porch, fold the throws in the living room an fluff your throw pillows.

3. Put a fresh stock of toilet paper in the bathroom, put away your toothbrush and leave a festive box of tissues behind.

4. Throw the dishes in the dishwasher and turn it on – by the time dinner is ready you’ll have clean (and warm) dishes that are perfect for serving!

Source: Merry Maids