Day 8 of Countdown to Oliver: Prepare for Visiting Family

Photo by Lassa Christensen, "Suitcase"

Photo by Lassa Christensen, “Suitcase”

Tomorrow my mom will be here! So, that means get a massage and chiropractic adjustment, right? Because that’s what I did. Because of this awesome ‘Countdown to Oliver’ segment, there’s not too much left to clean or organize around the house.

I did set up the guest room bed and create a welcoming basket for the room–snacks, lotion, water, Kleenex, etc. It’s also a nice touch to place items in the guest room that have something to do with your relationship or connection to whoever’s visiting: Photos, a gift from them, an item that holds some memory, etc.

I do normally have a regimen to prepare when out-of-town family or friends come to stay. It’s similar to the countdown in that there’s a small list of things to complete each day for a week prior to the arrival. That way you can break things up, it’s not overwhelming, and you have plenty of time to get everything done.

Here’s my prep example list:

Start one week before company arrives–


Day 1:

Do the deep-cleaning things that aren’t necessarily outwardly noticeable at first but do make a difference…

  • Self-clean the oven
  • Throw the clear shower curtain in the washer with bleach on a hot cycle
  • Windex the windows and mirrors
  • Soak any rusted items (knives, shower curtain hooks, wire storage, etc.) in baking soda, white vinegar and hot water for 30 minutes.
  • If you have a pet(s), this is always a good day to go in or make an appointment for anything you need done: vet, groomer’s, food, flea meds, etc. (Or just give them a bath yourself if they don’t need a haircut or nails trim)


Day 2:

Get the organization and clutter under control again…

  • Empty out whatever niche or draw used to store paperwork and mail, and sort it or file it away
  • Clean out the refrigerator
  • Organize/clean out closets, drawers, pantries
  • Take a plastic bag out to your vehicle and gather all the trash
  • Take your vehicle to the carwash for a rinse and vacuum (if need be)


Day 3:

Loose ends…

  • Put together some ideas for what there is to do around your area, some events and sales that may be going on, and good places to eat or site-see
  • Get online and search for coupons/Groupons, deals, discounts, grocery sales, and freebies (everyone’s financial obligations are different with company in town, but this way, whoever the financial burden falls on has a break)
  • Make arrangements or reservations for any specific place you know you’ll want to visit
  • Make a meal plan for each day, just in case; that way you can prep groceries and have an idea of what to make on any given day, at any time


Day 4: 

Work on the outside appearance and get some vitamin D…

  • Purchase some cheap, colorful flowers and put them in a gardening bed if you have one, in front of the door, around a tree, or anywhere that’s quick, convenient and adds a little brightness (TIP–$12 for 18 pansies at Home Depot). Or tend to your current plants!
  • Wipe-down any outdoor furniture
  • Sweep off decks, porches and sidewalks
  • Pull weeds
  • Trim the grass


Day 5:

Laundry day…

  • Wash the rugs throughout the house
  • Wash towels, oven mitts and kitchen towels
  • Wash any blankets or throws
  • Wash any other loads of clothes laundry you may want or need to
  • Wash sheets and comforters, assuming guests are staying with you
  • If you have pets, wash any pet beds or toys
  • ^This includes folding or putting everything in its spot after washing!


Day 6:


  • Make a list and go grocery shopping (be excited you have a clean refrigerator and pantry to store your food in now!)
  • Make sure to include on your shopping list extra toiletries, cleaning items or any miscellaneous items (candles, snacks, photos) you’ve noticed a need (or want) for around the house
  • Prep any food you can ahead of time: put together and freeze a couple meals, prep a marinade, make a pitcher of tea or drinks, etc.


Day 7: (This can be the day company arrives or the day before based on whenever works best to start ‘Day 1’.)

Everyday chores and anything else…

  • Wash and put up dishes
  • Vacuum
  • Mop or sweep hard floors and bathroom(s)
  • Clean the bathroom (toilet, sink and shower)
  • Dust (fans, shelves, furniture, etc.)
  • Wipe-down counters, tables and furniture

…If this is the day of arrival (or on the day of arrival)…

  • Light some candles
  • Bake something yummy
  • Make beds and fold/re-organize any items that need it



The Countdown List:

1. Create the segment “Countdown to Oliver” and make list
2. Make a hospital bag
3. Create a baby registry
4. Prepare the baby’s space
5. Set-up pediatrician visit/appointments
6. Install the car seat
7. Pampering day
8. Prepare birthing plan
9. Wash shower curtains, rugs and sheets
10. *Reader’s idea* Virtual gift-opening
11. Finish an art project
12. Finish a book
13. Create an exercise regimen for the final 4 weeks
14. Take a sewing class and make something for the newest babe
15. Have a special mom and daughter day with Ella
16. (Re)organize files and paperwork
17. Finalize plans with the OB
18. Prepare for visiting family
19. Cleaning day
20. *Reader’s idea* Clothe diapering
21. Meal prep (frozen meals)
22. Write a letter to the new baby
23. Design birth announcements
24. Date night
25. Invest in post baby clothes
26. Clean pumping and feeding items
27. Take a class
28. Clean the carpets and floors
29. Stock up on toiletries and groceries
30. *Reader’s idea* Put feet up and rest

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