Baking dozens of cookies and buying everyone gifts is the fun part, but with every Christmas season, a bunch of cleaning tasks must be tackled too, from handling detritus in the kitchen to picking up pine needles in the living room. Searching for quick and easy solutions for de-griming all those parts of the house? Look no further than these five genius suggestions from Real Simple editors and experts to make those holiday chores more manageable (and keep you from acting like the Grinch).

Go to for a slideshow on the most clever tricks for prepping the house for your guests’ arrival, keeping it tidy while they are around, and cleaning up after all of the festivities have ended.