There’s a chill in the air and holiday lights are starting to appear on the department store shelves. These are sure signs that the holiday season (and all the extra entertaining) are just around the corner. For some, the thought of opening your home to family and friends might seem a little overwhelming. But there’s still plenty of time to make your home feel fresh and festive – without a major overhaul.

Here are a few quick tips to help you prep your home before the holidays arrive.

First, focus on main spaces like your kitchen, bathroom and living areas. Don’t take on a major remodeling project as you roll into the holidays. The kitchen is a gathering space, so spend some time sprucing up your cabinet space, clearing clutter and doing some heavy-duty cleaning of the windows and floors. Easy fixes like new knobs, new lighting or towels can really refresh a space without much cost or fuss.

Then move onto your bathroom to see if there are some easy swaps to brighten the space for guests. Consider adding a new shower curtain, fluffy towels, a fresh coat of paint on the cabinets or adding a beautiful new mirror. Simple changes can do wonders.

In the living and/or family room, one simple way to add color is to switch out your pillows and throws to transform the space. I have beautiful throws with vibrant, rich holiday colors that I bring out every year as the fall winds start to blow. New candles and special holiday lighting can also add a special ambiance that go hand-in-hand with holiday entertaining.

Go easy on the decorations and use existing items to help you prep your spaces for guests. For most people, easy elegance is the best way to celebrate the holidays without the clutter. Choose a main area, like a mantel, an entry table or a bookcase to create some seasonal cheer (e.g. displaying holiday cards), without taking up valuable floor or wall space. Fresh flowers, holiday throw rugs and vases full of holiday ornaments can also add that special charm.

Another thing to consider is the ability to use existing furnishings that can do dual duty as entertaining space (which is always at a premium when you have extra guests in the house). One of the spaces I use frequently during the holidays is my TV Lift Cabinet System. We don’t usually watch much television in our living room during the holidays, but the beautiful hand-crafted cabinet is a great place to put appetizers and snacks. The height is perfect. It keeps things within reach (and out-of-reach for toddler hands and pets who sometimes misbehave).

Plus, the cabinet also provides wonderful storage to hide all the gadgets from gaming systems and such. Win/win. No mess or fuss.

So, take a few minutes now to make a few easy adjustments and you’ll be ready for whatever holiday entertaining comes at you this year.