3 Quick Things I Do to Declutter My Kitchen Before Holiday Guests Arrive

published Nov 22, 2022
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I don’t believe in making sure everything is perfectly put-together before you allow anyone into your home. In fact, I think letting others see your house as you’re living in it sets the stage for relationships to grow. By allowing someone to see your true life at home, you’re being vulnerable and allowing them to get to know the real you. 

That said, there’s a difference between “perfect” and “guest-worthy.” A clean, orderly home is welcoming and honors your guests, and the holidays are an especially nice time to make everyone feel special by preparing your space for their arrival. 

Of course, the most important room to clean when you’re having guests is the bathroom. Second on the list of importance is the common area where you’ll all hang out. Officially that would probably be the living room, but it’s most likely to be the kitchen. We all know how everyone tends to congregate where all the action is taking place — yes, that same kitchen where you’ve been preparing food and adding finishing touches to appetizers and warming up the bread.

For sure your guests would understand a messy kitchen, but having the kitchen feel a bit more put-together can help you feel more on top of things. This way, you can focus on the people rather than cleaning up the messes. Here are three things I do to quickly clean up the kitchen when guests are arriving any minute.

1. Clear your surfaces.

Clearing off surfaces has the biggest impact on the look and feel of your kitchen. Start with the table and then move to the counters. Put dirty dishes in the sink and if you can’t put everything that’s out of place away, at the very least straighten it up. (Consider the laundry basket method if you’d prefer to get clutter out of the kitchen entirely.) If you have time, wipe down all your cleared-off surfaces. 

2. Wash your dirty dishes.

If time allows, washing the dishes you stashed in the sink (and maybe on the counter if they didn’t fit) is the next thing to tackle when you’re cleaning up before guests come over. No one enjoys seeing dirty dishes — not your guests and not you! “Decluttering” the sink makes the room feel instantly cleaner and makes room for more food prep. You’ll also start with a clean workspace when more dirty dishes inevitably arrive. 

3. Take out the trash.

Nothing makes a room more off-putting than an unpleasant smell. And if you’ve been in the kitchen for a while, you might not even notice if odors are emanating from the garbage can. Taking the trash out before guests arrive not only means you’ll have a whole fresh empty trash bag for cleanup time, but it also ensures that the only thing they’ll smell in the kitchen is all the good stuff you’ve cooked and baked.