Hi Tidy Thyme Tribe and welcome back! This time of year, we’re all jacked-up with holiday spirit and peppermint cocoa.

There’s never more to accomplish than between mid-December and the first of January. Give yourselves a few minutes to relax, have a cookie, and read this post. Then, grab your microfiber cloths and Tidy Thyme sprays…you’re going to need them.

Before we deck the halls, we must clean the halls. The glories of tinsel, evergreens, and nutcrackers are lessened when we know there's a layer of dust and sticky fingerprints lurking beneath. Many of you are prepping to host a flurry of friends and family and have a “to-do” catalog longer than Santa’s naughty list (so many names added this year). I’m here to tell you: It will all be ok. Let’s discuss time management tactics to keep you on track.  

Scouring an entire home is no easy feat and thinking, “I HAVE TO CLEAN EVERYTHING” is not helpful. Break it up. Determine the most vital tasks. What must be accomplished before company arrives? These are the big ones: de-clutter and organize the living space; wipe all counters and surfaces;

clean bathrooms; vacuum/sweep/mop. Pencil them into your scheduleNext, figure out the "these are important, but not crucial" responsibilities. For example: cleaning out the refrigerator; washing windows; laundry (the easiest mess to hide). Sprinkle them between your vital tasks. Be honest with yourself and don't underestimate how long each job will take. Not allowing enough time for a project is a fast way to feel defeated — and defeat is not on the schedule.

Once your plan of attack is ready, grab a timer. We’re going to clean using the Pomodoro Method, which unfortunately has nothing to do with slathering sauce over bucatini. This time management technique is interval training for the brain. Break big projects into several tasks. Work on a specific job for 25 minutes such as clean all the counter space in the kitchen; wipe away the toothpaste splatter from bathroom mirrors then scrub the sink and vanity; put away each and every random object found throughout the living areas; vacuum/mop a few rooms.

Cleaning does not have to be stressful, I promise. The trick is really just to put on your blinders and tackle one task at a time. And work from the top down. There’s nothing worse than cleaning the floors, then wiping kitchen crumbs all over them (we’ve been there). Keep breathing and moving forward; you’ve got this!When the timer dings, wrap-up the job and give yourself five for a sun salutation, bathroom break, or eggnog refill (good for you if it’s boozy). Reset the clock for another 25. After four "Pomodoros" (and hopefully lots of progress), reward yourself with time to recharge. Take 15 to 30 minutes to feel human again then begin another set, if needed.

With love and appreciation, Happy Holidays from the entire Tidy Thyme family!    

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