Ah, Christmas! A time to relax and kick back. To enjoy time with your family snug in your home looking out on a frosty Winter Wonderland…. Ho ho ho – in your dreams! If you’re hosting a big family Christmas (or even a modest one), you’re probably dreading the onslaught of mess and chaos that the joy of Christmas inevitably entails. So we’re here to give you the benefit of our professional expertise. Essentially, it all comes down to planning and scheduling.
Before the decorations go up
Once Christmas decorations are in situ, it becomes a lot trickier to get things clean. This is why it’s important to give your home a good clean before the decorations go up. By doing this, you can get away with surface cleaning of sides and floors for the rest of the month. It’s not quite a full spring clean, but in the weeks leading up to advent, it’s worth staggering those larger cleaning tasks so that your home feels properly clean.
- Vacuum behind and under furniture
- Dust and polish shelves, sills and other surfaces
- Clean down doors and skirting boards
- Spot clean carpets
The lead up to Christmas is so important in the smooth running of the holiday itself. A home is easier to maintain during a busy period if it starts off thoroughly clean.
Your appliances are going to be worked hard over the Christmas period. So for them to perform at their best, give them all a deep clean before the season kicks off. If appliances accumulate dirt and grime, it will affect its performance and even lead to breakdowns and faults. Which you definitely don’t want to happen over Christmas!
Add a cup white vinegar to an empty hot washing machine cycle and wipe around the rubber seal with vinegar. This will clear out any accumulation of grime that might otherwise transfer to your festive finery!
You’re going to use this a lot if you’re catering for visitors! So you want your dishwasher to be on top form. Prepare by running an empty cycle with a cup of household vinegar placed in an upright cup in the top rack. Make sure that salt and rinse aid are topped up.
A good fridge declutter is the only way to avoid treacherous teetering piles of food in your fridge over the Christmas period. Throw away all those lingering jars and pots. Be ruthless and only keep what is going to be eaten. Wash shelves and drawers down with hot soapy water.
Yes, its only going to get dirty, but starting from a clean slate means you’ll avoid looking at your oven in despair come New Year! Many people like to leave this to the professionals, so book this in now if that’s you. However if you’re going to tackle your oven yourself, mix water and bicarbonate of soda into a paste to spread on the oven interior. Leave it for a couple of hours and then spray with white vinegar. After half an hour you can wipe it down ready for use.
Descale your kettle. There will be many cups of tea and coffee to be made over the Christmas period and you don’t want to serve scaly drinks! Boil a half filled kettle with 50/50 water and white vinegar for a chemical free process.
This goes for stuff, clothes and kitchen. If you can, have a good clear out. Give good quality things to charity and discard anything unusable. This allows you to free up space for any gifts you may receive and to store the various incidentals of Christmas. By this we mean crackers (pulling and eating), seasonal kitchenware and extra ingredients. Ideally, you’ll be able to free up a kitchen cupboard to keep everything off the work surfaces!
From Christmas eve to Boxing Day you may have different family members visiting, or be rushing in and out of the home on visits to loved ones elsewhere. Whatever your plans, this period can feel like a whirlwind of activity, so it’s worth laying out some core logistics and cleaning tasks to maintain a semblance of control.
Clean as you go
Wiping oven and worktop spills as you go will prevent an overly daunting kitchen clean up at the end of the day.
Don’t let rubbish take over! Store recycling out of the house, collect up wrapping paper as presents are opened and start Christmas Day with an empty kitchen bin.
Wipe down kitchen surfaces, run the dishwasher and throw dishcloths and tea towels in the wash at the end of each day. These simple things give the mornings a sheen of clean.
The single most impactful act of cleaning is to vacuum the floors. So a daily whip round of your living room, hallway and kitchen will keep your home feeling fresh and welcoming.
Your guests need not be an army of festive elves, but allow them the opportunity to self serve and most people will willingly chip in. Leave a colander out for dirty cutlery, and this will avoid it cluttering up the sink.
Now, hopefully all the hard work you’ve put in before the festive onslaught will begin to pay off! Of course, your home will still feel like it’s a mess – this is the most surefire sign of having had a good time after all! However, it should feel like a manageable mess. At CJH Cleaning we know the importance of planning, so hope that these preparation tips will give you a merry Christmas!