Thanksgiving dinner may provide many fond memories of getting together with family members you seldom see otherwise, but, like any occasion in which many people take part, it can also produce a big mess.
The dishes all have to be cleaned, washed and put away, and the living room may have to be cleaned as well, as visitors congregate and eat there. It can really spoil a lovely holiday when you have to do this — and make the next one less enjoyable when you have to think about the cleaning up that you’ll have to do afterwards.
Does this sound like you? Well, here are some valuable tips that should help make the job a much easier and less burdensome one.
Set up a basic plan.
Decide such things as what to do with the leftovers, which dishes can be washed in the dishwasher and whether you’ll be sweeping, vacuuming or mopping. These decisions should be made before you prepare the meal.
Clean as you go.
This is the best way of avoiding having to clean up a big mess — you simply clean each dish, pot or piece of silverware as soon as you are finished using it. This is certainly much easier than washing a whole pile of dirty dishes in the sink!
Limit what you cook.
At a big occasion such as Thanksgiving dinner, it is tempting to prepare a great big feast for everybody, especially if many people will be coming. You should know that this is not necessary; the prominent restaurateur and cook Thomas Keller says to exercise restraint. Cook four recipes at most; this will reduce much of the stress of meal preparation as well as cleanup. You can save even more work by ordering ready-made Thanksgiving meals from specialty stores.
Begin with a clean slate.
If the rooms are clean to begin with, you will have a much easier cleanup afterwards.
Be savvy with containers. Serving containers, too, must be cleaned after they are used — unless they are disposable. Therefore, if guests will be bringing their own food, ask them to use disposable containers for the purpose. This is also another good reason for using specialty stores as their containers are disposable.
Following these tips will make your life easier. Have a happy and clean Thanksgiving!