Lifehacks. I see that word on a YouTube video or blog post and CLICK! I’m sucked into a black hole of things that are supposed to make my life easy. But eventually, every post has the same list of 15 ideas for keeping your kitchen organized or getting your kid to clean their room. This list won’t be that specific, but there are a few hacks and gadgets I’ve found that definitely make my chore list or parenting tasks a hell of a lot easier to handle.
1. If you’re a parent, you know that when your kid loses a sippy cup of milk, it’s pretty much time to call the HAZMAT unit. This has happened to me on several occasions, and I hated wasting money and cups because I was constantly throwing them out. So instead of throwing out that cup when I finally find it, I have a trick: block your nose, empty it, and give it a good wash. Fill it with HOT water, a tablespoon of lemon juice, and a tablespoon of baking soda. I’ve even used Alka-Seltzer tablets for this. Let it soak overnight. In the morning dump it out, wash it, and give it a sniff. If it still smells a little funky, soak it again. I use this trick for my travel mugs, too. I used to have designated cups for tea v coffee because your mug will inevitably start hanging onto the smell of that mocha. Now I don’t have to do that because I can just use this trick.
2. Use non-adhesive shelf liners under your kids’ bowls and plates when they’re eating. It can be understandably frustrating to a toddler when they need to use a fork or spoon and the damn plate slips out from under them. (Don’t waste your money on those stupid bowls with the suction cups on. They suck only in the figurative sense. They never stick to ANYTHING.) I cut circles the size of her bowls and plates and put them underneath, and now her stuff doesn’t slip. Best part: these things are MACHINE WASHABLE! Get a little sauce or yogurt on it, no biggie. Toss it in with the laundry and it’s all good! I’m even going to do it to her placemat so even that can’t come out from under her.
3. My cousins and I reminisce about the days that we were so excited to get a new game or messy toy for our birthdays… and our moms kept it on the highest shelf in the house where were allowed to take it out approximately NEVER. I remember getting a Playdoh play set for Christmas and being told I needed to wait until I could play with it OUTSIDE. I love you Mom, but for real?
Plastic tablecloths are your friend. What are you doing still reading this? Get your ass to the dollar store and stock up like, yesterday. I’m cheap AF and I still have the ones from my kid’s last birthday party. Get out the playdough and paints. She sees those Lion Guard tablecloths come out and she knows it’s GAME ON. They will last you forever because you can reuse them over and over.
4. I am TERRIBLE at remembering to pack the basic shit for my kid when we go somewhere. I always keep diapers and wipes in the car and a couple in my purse. A bib? NEVER. But you know what takes up zero space in my bag or you can grab pretty much wherever you’re headed (at least for now)? A plastic shopping bag. Cut off the bottom, head through the top, arms through the handles and BAM! Instant smock.
5. Keep a pair of small scissors with you at all times. I am not kidding. You have no idea how many times you really need them until you can’t find one. I just bought a cheap pair of kids safety scissors, and they came with a blade guard which makes it great to keep in my purse. I’ve used them to cut food, loose threads, and rogue T-shirt tags (it should be illegal to make baby clothes with actual tags. We invented tagless t-shirts because GROWN UPS were uncomfortable, but we still use them in kids clothes. WTFFF????)
I hope these tips help make your life as a parent (or not) a little easier. They sure help me! If there are any little tricks you use to make your day run a little more smoothly, let me know in the comments!
Until next time!