Merry Maids Top 12 Tips for Turning Holiday Cleaning Challenges Into Holiday Cheer

Expert-Tested Advice Gives Way to Stress-Free Season

MEMPHIS, TN - (Marketwired - November 16, 2015) - Between holiday shopping, whipping up delicious meals and hosting guests, it can be challenging to prepare and maintain a clean and orderly home during the holiday season. That's why Merry Maids, the nation's leading home cleaning service, is sharing 12 expert-tested tips to help homeowners stay calm, cool and cheerful when faced with unexpected stains, messes and other holiday cleaning challenges.

"While decorating, cooking and spending time with loved ones during the holidays is what it's all about, the preparation and cleanup can be overwhelming," says Debra Johnson, Merry Maids home cleaning expert. "With these smart and simple tips you can bring out the crowd-pleasers like red wine, cranberry sauce and gravy, and even welcome last minute guests with open arms -- and still enjoy a stress-free season!"

Merry Maids Top 12 Tips: Turn Holiday Cleaning Challenges into Holiday Cheer

1. Tipsy Tips for Red Wine Stains

While red wine is a favorite, it can be unkind to upholstery and carpets. To clean, blot with a microfiber or white cloth, pour on club soda and continue blotting. If the stain's dry, whip up a quick solution of dishwashing liquid (1 tablespoon), white vinegar (1 tablespoon) and warm water (2 cups) and blot the stain.

2. Sticky Situations

Cranberry sauce is a sure-shot darling of the holidays, until it spills on the new tablecloth. Quickly combine a solution of mild liquid detergent (1/2 tablespoon), vinegar (1 tablespoon) and one quart of cool water and let the stained cloth sit for 15 minutes; then wash with cool water.

3. No Crying Over Spilled Gravy

What's a turkey without its best friend, gravy? If you're stressing about what spilled gravy may do to your linens or new outfit, relax. Blot the spill to remove excess gravy, treat with laundry stain remover and soak in the washing machine for two hours. Wash, air dry and voila!

4. Bright and Melty Decor

When wax drips onto that special tablecloth, it's a nightmare to remove. Place in the freezer and scrape with a blunt butter knife. If any wax remains, place a sheet of wax paper on the affected side of the linen and use an iron on the reverse side to transfer the spilled wax onto the paper.

5. Cup o' Joe Overflow

Coffee is a crowd pleaser after every holiday feast, until sips turn into spills. Dab carpet stains with a microfiber or white cloth to remove excess coffee, and then blot with liquid dish soap (1 tablespoon) cool water (2 cups) and white vinegar (1 tablespoon).

6. Dessert Disasters

Nothing says holidays like chocolate-y sweets. When stains occur, mix a solution of dish washing liquid (1 tablespoon) and cold water (2 cups) to blot the soiled area until no color transfers to the cloth. Continue to blot soiled area to assist with drying carpet and then place a fan over it until it's completely dry.

7. Pesky Pine Needles

Real Christmas trees look beautiful and smell amazing, but those pesky pine needles can cause post-holiday frustration. First, empty out your vacuum and slowly vacuum over the needles. For those last few errant pine needles, press a lint roller over the area until it's clean.

8. Safely Storing Memories

From family traditions to your baby's first Christmas, holiday ornaments hold special memories. For easy and safe storage, glue plastic cups to strips of cardboard and stack them in a box, placing an ornament in each cup. To deal with shattered baubles and glitter, use a lint roller over the area to capture all the pieces.

9. Not So Bright and Shiny

The holidays are the perfect time to break out your finest dishware. To clean your silver before the party, use a soft cloth and gently rubbing polish over each piece. After the holidays, wrap silver in cotton or felt and store in an airtight container to prevent tarnish.

10. It's a Wrap

Setting up a gift wrapping station is all about smarter storage. Use clothespins on both ends of wrapping paper to hang in a closet with string or yarn. Use a wire hanger to hang a spool of ribbon.

11. Fixings for a Feast

Holiday feasts usually call for an oven cleaning, before and after. To clean oven racks, place in garbage bags, spray with oven cleaner or a degreasing solution, leave for 30 minutes to an hour, rinse with soapy water and wipe dry.

12. Spruce in a Snap

To spruce up your home before guests arrive, sweep the porch, fold blankets in the living room and fluff throw pillows. Tidy the coffee table and swipe with a microfiber cloth, put away anything left on counters.

Use these expert tips to help reduce stress and chaos around the holiday season. Or sit back, relax and let Merry Maids create a customized cleaning plan for your home. Merry Maids' trustworthy team is readily available to ensure a consistent, reliable, and thorough cleaning process every time, allowing you to focus on what's important -- creating fun holiday memories. To find the nearest Merry Maids location, visit Stay up-to-date on the latest Merry Maids news and tips by visiting the company's Facebook page or following Merry Maids on Twitter.

About Merry Maids

Merry Maids is the largest home cleaning franchise network in the United States. Merry Maids provides services in 48 states and the District of Columbia through more than 500 company-owned locations and franchised outlets. The company also provides home cleaning services in Canada, Ireland and the United Kingdom and has licensing arrangements whereby licensees provide these services in Hong Kong, Japan, South America, South Korea, Southeast Asia and Australia. Through its company-owned and franchise locations, Merry Maids employs more than 8,000 home cleaning professionals that service homes on four continents, including more than 200,000 homes in North America every month. Merry Maids is a business unit of ServiceMaster Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SERV), a leading provider of essential residential and commercial services. Go to for more information about Merry Maids or follow us at and

About ServiceMaster

ServiceMaster Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SERV) is a leading provider of essential residential and commercial services, operating through an extensive service network of more than 8,000 company-owned, franchised and licensed locations. The company's portfolio of well-recognized brands includes American Home Shield (home warranties), AmeriSpec (home inspections), Furniture Medic (furniture repair), Merry Maids (residential cleaning), ServiceMaster Clean (janitorial), ServiceMaster Restore (disaster restoration) and Terminix (termite and pest control). The company is headquartered in Memphis, Tenn. Go to for more information about ServiceMaster or follow the company at or

SOURCE Merry Maids

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