How-To: Prepare Your Home for Holiday Guests

Entertaining, Home

kc holiday

We’ve talked before about decorating your home for a holiday party, but once you’ve decked the halls, what do you do to prepare your home for guests? Though I don’t often host overnight guests, I do entertain frequently for dinner parties, birthdays, festive brunches and holiday dinners.  At any dinner party, there are two rooms where your guests are guaranteed to be: the kitchen and the bathroom.  Even if your living space is decorated to the nines, people tend to gravitate to the room where the food is and at some point, will pay a visit to the washroom — especially if spirited beverages are flowing.

To ensure that your holiday celebration goes off without a hitch, Cottonelle, Kleenex, Scott and Viva products, available at Walmart via the Ibotta app, will help you prepare your home for any celebration, while letting family and friends feel the togetherness that comes with this time of year.

Cottonelle, Kleenex, Scott and Viva have your household needs covered this holiday season and you can find these brands at Walmart, a one-stop shop for all your holiday preparation and entertaining needs. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party for holiday guests or planning to take the entertaining reins this year with the whole family, you can save on the must-haves and splurge on other things.

Ibotta is a free app that helps you save money, including:

  • $1 off Cottonelle 12-ct or larger
  • $1 off Scott 12-ct or larger
  • $1 off Viva 6-ct or larger
  • Buy two products and get an extra dollar back.

Create a Welcome Basket

My purse is pretty much a black hole, so there’s no question that whenever I head out for the night, I forget something and find myself having to ask my hostess for contact solution, dental floss, hand lotion or a nail file. To avoid scrambling through your bathroom cabinets or drawers to fulfill on the spot requests, I like to make sure some of the following toiletries are displayed neatly in my bathroom someplace inviting, so guests know they can help themselves.

You don’t always have to use a basket, either. I like to use a container that corresponds with the season. During the summer, I like using miniature beach bags and during the holiday season, a festive gift bag adds a special touch. What to include in your guests’ welcome basket?

  • Laundry strain remover pen or wipes
  • Dental Floss
  • Hairspray
  • Nail files
  • Contact lens solution
  • Lint roller
  • Hand lotion

Deck the Bathroom

We all know what goes on in the bathroom (stays in the bathroom), but that doesn’t mean we have to pretend the room doesn’t exist. There are plenty of things you can do to make your bathroom a calming space for guests to freshen up. There’s nothing more awkward than visiting someone’s home, sitting down in the bathroom to do your personal business…and the toilet paper roll is completely empty.


For the love of all that is hospitable, make your extra t.p. easy to find. If you don’t have a discreet container or cabinet where you can stash extra bathroom supplies, make them look pretty! It starts with using quality toilet paper, like Cottonelle Clean Care or Cottonelle Ultra Comfort Care which is ultra cushiony and ultra luxurious — exactly what you want to see in a bathroom, right? Cottonelle has CleanRipple Texture, which is a proprietary innovation, is strong and has extra-absorbent ripples. Scott 1000 toilet paper is another great brand that gives you the quality, performance and long-lasting value you want in 1,000 sheets.

I also like to keep plenty of Kleenex on on hand for guests. Soft, strong and absorbent, Kleenex Holiday Oval is the perfect tissue to always have on hand throughout the holidays. Even though my local Walmart only stocks the square boxes, I love the oval-shaped box that adds extra sophistication to your home, with prints and colors inspired by the holiday season. Kleenex Perfect Fit, a new slim canister, is also ideal for any small or on-the-go space, and available in a variety of patterns that fit seamlessly into any room.


I love the holiday patterns, especially the ones that match with the color coordinated ornament balls on my Christmas tree.

Deck the Kitchen

First, stock up on your essentials. When I cook, I constantly wash my hands and then I run out of paper towels. Viva® Vantage® has a revolutionary scrubby texture while Viva® Mainline has a signature soft and smooth texture.

Viva® Paper Towels are great for everyday use, but also on the tough messes that often join the holidays, like cleaning sticky cookie dough from a kitchen workspace or mopping up spills and splatters from homemade eggnog. Durable, with a cloth-like texture and durability, they can tackle any job.

Make sure you also have plenty of food storage containers for leftovers, aluminum foil and plastic wrap for food preparation and preservation, dish soap and other kitchen cleaners, and if you use paper products, plenty of napkins, cups, and flatware for guests. What I like to do is set nice place settings for dinner, using glassware and cloth napkins, but provide paper plates and cocktail napkins for cocktail hour or hors d’oeuvres.


My final suggestion to help get your kitchen company-ready is to make sure that no matter what you’ve been cooking, your home will smell warm and inviting. Even if you’re baking a pie or something otherwise deliciously smelling, drops and splatters in the oven can trigger a burning aroma. Sometimes when you’re cooking multiple dishes, mingling fragrances can be less than pleasing.  About 30 minutes before your guests arrive, put a cinnamon stick or two in a pot of boiling water with some orange wedges or slices, and let it simmer.  It will work better and last longer thn any scented candle. Sometimes I’ll also toss in some cloves or apple slices to mix things up.

Plan the Menu

Finally…my favorite part. When I have guests over, whether it’s for a few hours or a few days, planning the menu is always my favorite part. Even though I love to try new recipes and tend to cook according to season, there are a few recipes that I always love to make around the holidays.

The Best Brownies (Cake nor Candy)

Cranberry Mimosas

Pappardelle with White Truffle Butter Cream Sauce

Spinach Artichoke Dip

Spirited Cinnamon Eggnog

What are your holiday necessities? Find great deals on all Kleenex, Viva, Scott and Cottonelle products at your local Walmart using the Ibotta app.

K-C Holiday Holiday Infographic_FINAL

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

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