It’s 11pm and your company has all gone home, and while entertaining is a joy, cleaning up can sometimes be a chore. Here are a few quick tips for how I take the stress out of cleaning up after company!
#1 TAKE CARE OF STAINS before calling it a night. I try to get the table cleaned up, but if the cloth napkins or tablecloth are showing obvious stainage, I try to take care of it before the damage is irreversible. A spray of Shout, a toothbrush, and a little water do the trick before I pop it in the wash the next day.
#2 WASH THE VALUABLES RIGHT AWAY: Knives and wooden kitchen tools are my first priority when tackling the dishes. I try to do my best to take good care of our knives and wooden-wear only because they are some of the kitchen’s most used, and often times, most expensive tools. If I don’t touch any other dish that night, I do try to get these guys squared away.#3 ORGANIZE THE DIRTY DISHES: Some more experienced housewives are thinking, “What?!?!?” right now. But this is where my “food safety” nerd comes out. When there’s no dish washer and a small sink, washing has to be strategic, so I attempt to organize the dishes into groups in the order I will wash them in the morning. Dishes, platers, pitchers, bowls, then cups, and lastly, utensils. (Note: air drying is the most sanitary when it comes to hand washing dishes).#4 EMPTY THE GARBAGE: If none of the above gets done before I hit the hay, I do change the garbage no matter what. Maybe it was all the slaving away I did as a child when I had to empty the garbage every. single. night. But I’m here to say, people, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger! Now I love emptying the garbage every day. Yes, even if the can isn’t full. “Oh…really” some have said “Isn’t that a waste of garbage bags?” Welllll, maybe. But if there is anything I’m going to be lenient about with my “environmentally friendliness” it is this. You can buy nearly a billion garbage bags for about $10.00 at Costco, and there’s an end to the argument. I am drafting a post titled “Smells In A Small Apartment”, and this was the little prelude.
What are your tricks?