Compensation was provided by Motts via Mode Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Motts.”
Parenting. It’s really no easy thing. Raising three kids, I have learned a few tips & strategies to how to make parenting just a little easier. And let me tell you, I will try anything to make this parenting thing just a little smoother of a ride. Below, we are sharing some of our favorite parenting “shortcuts” that make life a little simpler & help us keep our sanity.
1. Plan to do a load of laundry every day. It will make you keep up. And on those mornings when there isn’t a full load to do, sit back & relax. It’s awesome!
2. Take pictures of kid’s artwork. When your child brings home artwork, display the art for a short period of time. Then, take a picture & toss it. Once the school year is over, make a “kid art” memory book.
3. Keep kitchen scissors on hand at all times. I use ours daily to help cut my children’s food. It makes it super easy to cut meat, waffle strips, toast, and more. It’s so much easier than pulling out a cutting board & knife.
4. Hang checklists by the door for morning & afternoon. Children can easily read and follow the checklists instead of you having to repeat every step.
5. Keep spare clothes & shoes in the car. I don’t know how many times my kids have got in the car without shoes on. (Yes, I know I should notice but it’s crazy some days getting out of the house!) Keeping extra shoes & clothes means I will never have to make an emergency stop for clothing.
6. Keep diapers & wipes on every floor level in your house. No having to run up the stairs to change the baby!
7. Place outdoor necessities right by the door. Store sunscreen, hand sanitizer, & bug spray where you can easily apply and use before leaving or entering the house.
8. Have a bag of snacks in your purse & in your car. Kids are always hungry & I have learned just to keep my snacks well-stocked. Some of our favorite on the go snacks are: granola bars, snack-sized crackers, & Mott’s® Snack & Go applesauce.
9. Keep activity bags set & ready to go. My boys are in swim lessons right now so we have a bag hanging that holds their swimsuit, beach towel, & goggles so when it is time to go swimming, we can just grab the bag and go!
10. Fill water bottles at the beginning of the day & place in refrigerator. When your child says they are thirsty, they can just grab their drink on their own and it’s already cold!
11. Keep simple meals on hand for those long nights. Our pantries are always stocked with kid favorites: mac & cheese, breakfast for dinner, & chicken nuggets for those nights when I just don’t feel like cooking.
12. Have a durable vinyl tablecloth on hand to call your “craft cloth”. I place this on our kitchen table every time we do crafts. The kids can make a big mess doing their crafts. When done, I just roll it back up for next time.
13. Order groceries online. It’s life-saving. Trust us, we both do it!
14. Keep birthday gifts on hand. Buy several gifts at one time (try to catch a sale) & save for those never-ending birthday parties. No last minute scrambling to get a gift, just grab one and go.
15. Label toy baskets & clothing drawers. Foster independence so they learn to put things away & get dressed on their own. The more they learn to do, the less you need to do!
16. Popsicles or ice cream pops for dessert? Let your child enjoy them in the bath. It can drip as much as they want & no mess to clean up!
17. Hand on the car. When my kids get out of the car, they have to keep one hand on the car while I am still unloading the other kids out of the car. I don’t have to worry about anyone running out in the parking lot after teaching them this lesson.
18. Use a sound machine. All three of my kids still sleep with sound machines. Baby sister wakes up crying, nobody else wakes up. Big brother has a bad dream, nobody else wakes up. We take them when we travel & these kids sleep through anything. Awesome.
20. Are you looking for new bath or water toys? Just use old or mismatched Tupperware.
Earlier this week, I have been talking with several friends about the pressures on parents & the high expectations that moms put on themselves. It is crazy what mothers expect from themselves, all the way down to the lunches that they make for their kids. I love this video from Mott’s that reminds us to that kids aren’t impressed by all the things that we can do, but instead they are just want to have fun & be happy. “Happy is the new impressive”.