I don’t know if every kid who grew up in the ’80s has the same memories of Thanksgiving dinners as I do. But clearer than the turkey is the way our table was always set: first, a waterproof pad (that I swear was later repurposed atop a mattress when my children came for a sleepover) and then one of my mom’s linens or one handed down to her.
The padding left the table a bit squishy and meant that wine glasses sometimes toppled over. And the linen ended up covered in a cornucopia of cranberry sauce and gravy.
I was thankful, year after year, that my mom never asked me to try and get those stains out. She’d spend an unfortunate amount of time hunched over the laundry room sink, with a bar of Sunlight in hand. Scrubbing. I remember a lot of scrubbing.
Fast forward 25 or 30 years, and now that we host our own Thanksgiving dinners, I’ve learned to skip the linens. Sadly, that doesn’t mean I don’t still meet my fair share of stains after a big turkey dinner. Whether it’s on clothes or fabric napkins, those cranberries and that gravy still like to make their mark.
The difference between then and now, of course, is that I don’t spend too much time in the laundry room. I reach for a spray bottle of pre-mixed OxiClean liquid or use one of the new (and utterly convenient) OxiClean Laundry Detergent Paks. I still favour natural detergents for my everyday laundering, but for tougher stains — and I don’t have to tell you that gravy is tough — I usually go for something stronger.
If only all the washing up following Thanksgiving ended with laundry. Alas, no. The dishes are another story altogether. Another thing I’m thankful for? Our dishwasher. Because, honestly, the last thing I want to do after prepping, cooking, serving and hosting up a storm is dishes by hand. I know some people find doing dishes relaxing, and one woman I recently met tells me she does all her best thinking washing dishes.
Not this girl.
I’d rather tuck into a nice glass of wine listening to the sweet hum of the dishwasher.
So, as we get ready to go into turkey overdrive tomorrow across Canada, lifestyle expert Nicole Sassaman has some great tips so you spend more time entertaining and less time cleaning:
- Have an emergency clean-up kit ready to go for guests who dribble red wine (or other super-important food group) on themselves: cloths (microfibre or regular terrycloth) alongside a small bottle of OxiClean Versatile Stain Remover mixed with warm water
- Start cleanup as soon as dinner’s over, and tackle stuck-on food with OxiClean Extreme Power Crystals Dishwasher Detergent — remember to let guests help!
- Deep clean table linens using OxiClean Liquid Laundry Detergent, ensuring next year’s canvas is bright and clean
It’s all about survival, people. If you can make it through preparing a bird from scratch, serving everything at (relatively) the same time and manage to carry on conversations with every member of your extended family (yes, all of them), you pretty much deserve a medal.
But since I don’t have a medal, instead, the kind folks at OxiClean would like to give you the chance to win a Thanksgiving Survival Kit, valued at $60. That’s a whole lot of clean, my friends. It includes a bunch of awesome OxiClean products (Laundry Detergent Paks, Liquid Laundry Detergent, White Revive Stain Remover, Dishwashing 2 in 1 Booster, Unit Dose Laundry Detergent and Extreme Power Crystal Dishwasher Detergent).
DISCLAIMER: I was compensated for this post, but opinions (and sass!) are always my own.