This article first appeared in Roman Paradigm Massage and Therapy’s blog in December, 2012.

dishesAs we prepare to have our homes filled with the laughter of family and friends during this holiday season, here are a few tips to keep the widely used areas of your home healthy and organized during the holiday hustle-and-bustle:

  1. Soaps: Check the soaps in your kitchen and washrooms to make sure that they are contain an antibacterial agent. A lot of times, the soaps that we typically use to hand-wash the dishes do not contain this agent, which is important to prevent the spread of germs.
  2. Kitchen Sink: While the holiday meal is being prepared, delegate one person to be on dish washing duty, and another person to dry and put away dishes. Keeping the kitchen free of dishes will help prevent contamination, unwelcomed anxiety, and help keep you organized.
  3. Kitchen Counters: Whether you are cooking a turkey, ham, Turducken, or tofu turkey, keeping our cooking areas wiped down during and after the preparation of meals is extremely important. Any dish that contains uncooked meats need to be properly cleaned and sanitized. Sanitize the sink, cooking utensils, and cutting boards as well.
  4. Too Many Cooks: Limiting the amount of traffic in and around the kitchen will help keep you organized and focused. Encourage some (or certain) guests to refrain from coming into the kitchen, and pets should be kept of the kitchen at all times.
  5. Know your Guests: Vegetarian, gluten-free, non-drinker? Know if your guests have any limitations, and take appropriate considerations.
  6. Washrooms: Your washrooms will get more use than normal this time of year. Supply festive paper napkins in the washroom to prevent the hand towels from getting too damp. If you would like to stay green, delegate a person to change the towel frequently.

Creating a habitat that is warm and inviting is very important for our loved-ones feel welcome in our homes. This time of year is about spending time together, laughing, sharing stories, and joining around the table. We oftentimes get caught up in the hustle-and-bustle and forget the real meaning of these times. Staying organized in the cooking process and delegating certain tasks will allow the host/hostess the opportunity to enjoy these times with the guests.