If you are hosting Thanksgiving, you are probably busy with shopping and cooking the meal, but another consideration is your floor! Hardwood flooring can take a beating on Thanksgiving and other holidays but making a game plan ahead of time can minimize any permanent damage!

Before your guests arrive, decide if you will allow everyone to keep their shoes on inside their home. You may feel uncomfortable asking people to remove their shoes, but it really keeps down the dirt, allergens, and other unpleasant substances brought into the home on shoes. Have extra floor mats out near the entrance way for people to leave their shoes, and additional mats for people to wipe off any dirt, slush, or snow before they come inside.

It is beneficial to prepare ahead of time for food and drink spills! Have a small basket filled with stain and spill essentials such as a sponge, white cotton cloths, paper towels, vinegar, and baking soda. Red wine is a common culprit for a stained floor if not cleaned up quickly. Soak up any spilled wine quickly with a wet paper towel, don’t wipe or rub it as this can expand the stain and send it deeper into the wood. If any stain remains, a paste of baking soda and mineral oil can sometimes lift a stain from a hardwood floor. Coat the paste on the stain for 45 minutes and then remove it with a dry cloth.

Oily or greasy foods like gravy or a dropped piece of pie can cause difficult to remove grease stains! Clean up any spills quickly by blotting them with a sponge, clean cotton cloth, or paper towel. Applying too much pressure or wiping will spread the grease. If caught early enough you may be able to soak up all the grease. If not, apply a cleaning solution of equal parts warm water and white vinegar, soaking a washcloth or sponge into the solution and applying to the stained area. Wipe the stain in a circular motion and avoid too much pressure to keep the stain from setting in deeper. You may have to repeat this several times to completely lift the stain.

Another option for protecting your floors is to add an area rug to your space! Rugs can cushion the dents made by animal paws and can protect from dents and scratches from children playing. Consider investing in a new one or moving one from another area of your home temporarily to help with the extra foot traffic.

Enjoy a thankful day with family and friends!