I don't know about you, but all of the cooking I did the past couple of months for the holidays had me BUSY! One of the kitchen practices I learned during my restaurant management days is to consolidate trips: Trips to the walk in (refrigerator & freezer), trips to the dishwasher and of course, trips to the garbage can. Here is how we did it then and how I still manage now in my own home....
When starting your preparation, gather as many items from the fridge, pantry or cupboard as you can in one trip. Use your baking dish / mixing bowl to help carry the items you're going to use. Make sure you have all of the ingredients you need before starting the dish...in case you need to make a trip to the store!
While preparing a meal, keep a big bowl on the counter. Put all your chopping, cutting, and peeling discards into it, then make one trip to the garbage instead of 10.
Improvements Catalog has a food scrap catcher if you like handy gadgets:
And as you use a measuring cups, bowls, or utensils, discard them on a large piece of wax paper laid out on the countertop; it will be handy for you to pick back up if you find you weren't actually done with it AND the wax paper it rests on will keep your countertops from excess drips or mess. When you are done, you can combine all of the dirty dishes into the largest piece and walk them over to the sink and dishwasher at once. Now see how efficient you are????