Tips for Holiday Speed Cleaning + Win Febreze Gift Basket

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This review was made possible by iConnect and Febreze. I was provided compensation to facilitate this post, but all opinions are 100% mine.


There are so many magical things to celebrate with family and friends this time of year. I love that there are great old classics on television, and new holiday classics made-for-tv this year. Maybe it is that unique mix of the old and traditional alongside the new and shiny of the present that makes this time of year so enjoyable. As much as I love to see headlights unexpectedly appear in the driveway since it heralds the arrival of either the delivery driver with presents to be wrapped or friends and family coming over to have a sweet treat, it also sends me running through a mental checklist to make sure the house is holiday happy!

To keep our house polished for the drop-ins (who are always welcome!), I find that there are a couple of things I can proactively do to keep the lights twinkling and the carols humming right along. Here are some tips to get (and keep) your house ready for surprise guests for when you get the “We’re coming over and we’re 20 minutes away!” call.

1.  Let Your Tree Light Shine! I find that the room with the biggest lighted tree gets the most attention, so I put up the tree and get it trimmed as early in the season as possible. The more the focus is on the tree, the less people care if the floor was waxed this morning. Give them something shiny to see and that’s where their eyes and energies are focused.  Spend 5 minutes cleaning up the space where your guests will spend the most time.  Light a few candles – we love the Febreze holiday candles – they are festive and make your house smell like the season!

IMG_98002.  Make Sure the Shoes Drop at the Door. If you can keep the dirt out to begin with, your floors really will look much better and cleaner when the drop-in friends arrive. This is trickier with our four-legged family members who don’t always remember to pause to wipe their paws, but your efforts will be well-rewarded! Plus, it makes it easier to run through with a laundry basket and grab everyone’s gear to stash away when last minute house guests are on their way.  Run a quick broom to pick up any remaining dirt.

3. Eliminate the 12 Stinks.  With kids home and get-togethers, the potential for stinky is high, and that’s not something you want your guests to face.


If you haven’t seen the new music video featuring Glee’s Jane Lynch and Matthew Morrison detailing the 12 Stinks of Christmas, you have to check it out! It’s pretty hilarious!

       4.   Glass Wipes for the Windows. Watching it snow is one of our great enjoyments during the winter months, but smudges from fingers and dogs are inevitable. We keep a container of glass wipes handy and hit the windows in the common rooms and the mirror in the guest bathroom manageable within moments. Run a wipe along the sink and make sure there is plenty of soap, toilet paper, and hand towels.  We also like to use a Febreze oil warmer in Jolly Pine to keep our bathroom smelling fresh.
      5.  Confine the Clutter. Nothing makes a house look less welcoming than lots of clutter. We make sure to keep our clutter down by having a space for all of our clutter-happy items to go in a hurry. In a moments notice the keys can go to the bookshelf in the kitchen, the mail to the desk and the office door closed, and the stray laundry into the nearest hamper! It really can be done in a hurry, and without a sweat.  Worst case scenario – grab existing clutter, toss in to a laundry basket, put in a spare room where guests don’t need to be, and close the door!  It will still be there when they leave.

One lucky Parent Palace reader will win a Febreze Kit to help you avoid the #12Stinks of Christmas!  Make sure to come back every day to enter!


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Which of the #12Stinks make their appearance in YOUR home?


  1. says

    I adore speed cleaning. I lack the ability to focus on cleaning tasks that go on for hours on end. That is such a cool giveaway btw!

  2. says

    Love this! I’m so bad at the speed cleaning. Having 6 kids can be so difficult so when I clean I generally take all day ….. this is so helpful. I love febreze too, such great scents!

  3. Rebecca Swenor says

    These are great tips for Holiday Speed Cleaning. It is so true that people will pay more attention to the tree rather than anything else and It is great for a natural air freshener too. Frebreeze is something I always use because of having a dog. Love this gift basket.

  4. Leigh Anne Borders says

    As a momma of boys that game, I am all about the 12 teens gaming stink! That is definitely the scent that I need removed before guests flood my home this holiday season.

  5. Maggie Branch says

    I love the holiday connection! It smells so homey and clean. These are great tips for getting guest ready.

  6. Karen Glatt says

    There are so many odor problems over the Holidays, and Febreze makes so many products that really help me out with this. I can not stand the lingering food smells and the bathroom odors are the worst!

  7. Dawn Monroe says

    My stinkiest cleaning problem is teenage boys who can be pretty nasty in the bathroom and their bedrooms are like science projects. Gross!

  8. says

    The stinkiest part of the holidays can be wet boots! We have a little mudroom area where people drop their shoes and boots and this time of year that cubby can get pretty stinky!

  9. says

    We have a summer smelling one right now, seems a bit wrong considering flowers are not the smell of christmas, but I LOVE summer lOL. I will say my favorite christmas smell is christmas trees SO I might just have to invest on one for christmas.

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