A Last-Minute Cleaning Checklist for Thanksgiving

published Nov 21, 2016
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Thanksgiving is in three days. And you’re hosting. If you started planning weeks ago, you’re in great shape to pick up and get to the real work of having guests and preparing a very special feast. If you’re only getting around to preparations now, don’t despair! Here’s a list of practical things to take care of so your mind and heart are free to enjoy what matters most.

Prepare for Guests

  • Do a quick clean of the guest room (dust and vacuum).
  • Make the beds if you have a separate guest room.
  • Clean the bathroom and set out towels.
  • Make a plan for additional meals you’ll prepare at home.
A \Happy (Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

Clean the House

  • Clean up common area clutter.
  • Clean the bathrooms your guests will use.
  • Dust and vacuum.

Meal Prepping

  • Clean out the fridge so you have room for new items.
  • Compare your list against items you may have at home.
  • Grocery shop.
  • Plan out a detailed timeline of what you will cook when.
  • Do whatever you can do ahead of time to make cooking flow smoothly. I usually start making my pie crusts and desserts about three days out.
  • Check out frozen turkey thawing requirements.

Dining Room

  • Do a final count of dishes and serving platters. Fill in any gaps either by purchasing what you need or by being creative with your plans.
  • Do a quick final cleaning (dusting and vacuuming/mopping).
  • Decorate the table. Remember that simple touches can be just as elegant and loving as an elaborate set-up.


(Image credit: Lana Kenney)

Having overnight guests and getting the house ready for dinner can be overwhelming.