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Hosting for 4th of July

In the blog this week I would like to discuss the upcoming holiday and how to best prepare your home for hosting a party. 

Hosting a party can be one of the more rewarding social activities a person can engage in but also one of the more effort heavy activities as well. From planning to clean up there are many components to hosting a good party and like most things in life, the details are the most crucial. 

When preparing to host a party there are many things to consider, since this is a cleaning focused blog however, we will be focusing on cleaning for pre, during, and post party clean up. 

Failing to prepare is preparing to fail. It has been said many times and no doubt it is true. When hosting a party at your home for many people the preparation typically should begin a few days before the party is set to be. At Park West Cleaning we like to think about two things, where will the people be socializing and where will the food be placed. Two places where the eyes of your guests will be and looking out for anything out of line, so you as a host need to make sure you brought your A game and these two locations are spotless. 

When prepping a food station, you will want to first remove the clutter that may be present where you are going to be serving your food. For me, this is my kitchen island, a perfect central location of my home to serve food. I do however keep a fruit bowl as well as some candles and a few kitchen appliances there typically. When hosting my rule of thumb is to consolidate wherever possible. For me a day or so before the party, I am moving the fruit bowl, candles and toaster to the kitchen cabinet. Visually, clearing out a space and dedicating it to a specific purpose tells your guest “this is where the food is”. Meaning, they will not be searching around in other areas of your home for food or drink, limiting the spaces that you as host will need to prep for a party, making your job easier. 

Outdoor prep is going to take a little more effort on your end as a host. First things first you will need to decide where the outdoor socializing will be taking place. Once you have selected an area that will be appropriate for the amount of guests you will be hosting (about 10 sq feet per person is a good rule of thumb). After you have selected your space, you will need to clean and clear the area. That will typically require a quick wash of outdoor furniture that has accumulated dust and dirt from being outside for months, as well as a sweep of the patio or deck where you will be hosting your guests. It has been said before but it bears repeating, the cleaning of a floor/ ground will be one of the most impactful cleaning activities you can do to achieve the Aha Feeling. After your space is cleaned, it is time to get festive. A holiday colored table cloth will go a long way when transforming your space. Add in a few flags (4th of July) or other color coordinated candles, buckets, and chotchkies and you will be well on your way to a festive holiday!

Cleaning up is maybe the most crucial. I like to clean the second the last guest leaves the party, mainly as I don’t like to wake up to a mess. Now the clean up timeline is less critical than the set up however it is just as important. After X amount of people have gone through a food line, filling their plates with all sorts of sticky and sweet foods. There will undoubtedly be spills and stains. I like to attack these as soon as I can, but it’s not vital to get most food spills instantly. My island is made of marble, so it’s a bit porous. This means that I like to get to these stains and spills before they become too permanent. If your serving surface is less porous, you likely will not need to attack these spills night of, but it’s all personal preference. 

Hosting a 4th of july party is about celebrating the passing of the declaration of independence. It is also about bringing people together, to be with one another. To break bread and celebrate the warm weather. As host it is your responsibility and duty to make sure that your guests are taken care of as best they can be. Organization and preparing for a party by cleaning are the book ends to a party. Cleaning, organizing, consolidating, and prepping are crucial for success at your party. Just as important as the food and drinks are on point, making sure your guests are able to have an enjoyable afternoon/ evening in a clean space is just as important. 

Thank you for reading and as always, please email me at Jack@ParkWestCleaning.com for any questions, comments or concerns!

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