A clean home for the holidays

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There's nothing like the holidays to make you clean your house, especially if you're having visitors.

Now is the time to start sprucing up your home for family and friends and tackling things you may have been putting off. So you don't feel overwhelmed, here's a handy checklist and tips to help you through your chores, room by room.


Clean exhaust fan.

Clean or replace burner liners.

Clean oven and door glass, inside of microwave and empty the crumb-catcher in the toaster.

Wash out inside of refrigerator.

Rinse dust and other debris out of the globes on ceiling lights.

Polish copper and stainless cookware.

Vacuum heat vents and refrigerator coils.

Clean coffeemaker and run a potful of white vinegar through it.

Clean dish rack and drain board.

Organize items under the sink.

Wipe down the telephone with alcohol.

Deodorize the sink drain or garbage disposal.

Living, family or great room:

Clean shades of sconces and hanging lights and dust off the bulbs.

Clean, replace or repair tattered throw pillows and throws.

Replace stained, faded or ripped lamp shades.

Vacuum baseboards and heating vents.

Vacuum under chair and sofa cushions.

Clean glass and frames on artwork.

Wash or dust objets d'art.

Clean leather furnishings.

Wash or replace slipcovers.


Clean tiles and grout.

Replace caulking around tub or shower.

Replace bath mat and shower curtain if needed.

Add fresh soaps, bath salts and lotions.

Replace torn window shades or curtains.

Replace soiled and smelly bowl brushes.

Clean out medicine chest.

Wash or vacuum wastebasket.

Dining room:

Clean chandelier and replace bulbs so they all burn at the same intensity.

Polish dining set.

Replace old tablecloths or runners.

Polish silver.

Wash china and crystal.

Stock up on candles.

Guest bedroom:

Organize closet.

Replace worn bedspread, blankets or mattress cover.

Replace old pillows.

Replace clock batteries.

Deodorize room.


Wash pet beds and replace liners.

Invest in a new cat litter box.

Replace welcome mat and burned-out exterior bulbs.

Clean exterior of dryer and washer and the softener dispenser in the washer.

Wash windows.

Clean ceiling fans.

Clean foyer closet and add extra hangers.

Clean light fixtures and replace burned-out bulbs.

Frances Ingraham Heins writes for the Albany (N.Y.) Times Union.

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