Easy holiday decorCleaning the house can be annoying. Arguably therapeutic, but super annoying. It's not that you don't want things to be spic 'n' span, but, well, it takes time. A lot of time. Time that during the holidays you don't always have, especially when your mom's begging you to make that one dessert you always make. You know, that one. 

Take my current predicament, for example. Saturday night I'll be having 20 of my closest and oldest friends over for a "Friendsgiving" dinner party. The issue? I have a whole SLEW of errands, things to cook, and hello -- BLACK FRIDAY -- between now and then. So what's an enthusiastic hostess to do? Fake it.

Yeah, you heard me. What if I told you there were a whole bunch of things you could do in less than one hour to make your house appear cleaner than it actually is. Thus I present you with 10 steps to faking a clean house. Don't worry, we won't tell anyone your secrets. 

10. Eliminate odors: Arguably the first thing that people notice when they walk into your home is the smell. If you're cooking a great meal, you're in luck. Just in case, though, light a few candles throughout different rooms in your home guests will be using -- including the bathroom.

9. Put out seasonal decorations: A few painted pumpkins, ornaments, and candles placed around the kitchen and living room can make it seem like you put a whole lot of thought into your decor. In actuality, you needed an activity to keep your kids occupied yesterday. That, and Pottery Barn was having a sale on their adorable ceramic luminaries.

8. Spruce up the entryway: Make sure the floors are dusted where people first walk into the home. You want their first impression to be a good one.

7. Declutter: Ahh, the easiest way to clean up. Stack the toys in large bins. Then pile unopened mail, magazines, books, and whatever other gems are usually lying around the home in neat piles. If they're presentable (i.e., interesting books), use them to add to the decor. If they're just sloppy, put them in a crate in the closet and promise to go through them at another time.

6. Fresh flowers: There is no easier way to make your home look bright and sunny.

5. Dust large surfaces: Are loads of people going to be hanging around the kitchen counter snacking or sitting in the living room around your coffee table? Make sure those are the surfaces that are dust-free. I think your guests will forgive the bunny or two near the Christmas card photo from five years ago in the corner.

4. Find comfy home accents: Throw pillows and blankets can hide any imperfections in your couches, sofas, or dining room chairs. Plus, they're an easy way to accessorize pending the time of year.

3. Empty the sink: A totally easy fix. If you have extra time, emptying the dishwasher could also be a good idea. This way, you'll have somewhere to put some of the dirty dishes as they accumulate around the home.

2. Curtains: No time to wash all the windows? Make use of those drapes and blinds you splurged on oh so long ago.

1. A smile: Ahhh, the KEY! At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you are comfortable in your own space. Guests are coming to your home to enjoy your company and one another -- just remember that and relax.

Do you have any quick tips for a clean home?


Image via Pottery Barn