This post on mom hacks is a reader request (you guys have the best ideas!). I loved the idea but had no idea how to really approach it. Then, as the days and weeks passed I found myself laughing at little things I did that may qualify as a mom hack, a little tweak or tip that I had no clue about until I got into this mom gig myself. So I started writing them down and feel I have enough now to share. On ONE condition. You guys have to chime in. I want to hear what little tricks you’ve found to make this momming thing a bit easier. Promise? Ok, let’s get started.
Tell them you hid four quarters, but only hide three. Let’s start off with one from my childhood. During my mom’s tennis matches, she would throw four quarters randomly into a field for my brother and I to search for. I found out a few years ago that SHE ONLY THREW THREE. You brilliant, terrible woman, mom (wink). You can’t argue with success though, as it certainly kept us busy well into the third set.
For birthdays, buy streamers and for Halloween, buy spider webs. It’s seriously the biggest bang for your buck. They create such a festive atmosphere and you can have enough to decorate your whole house for under $10. They are our go-to decoration.
Deactivate Sent/Delivered/Read text receipts. You can do this on an iphone under settings–> messages. Sometimes I can’t respond to something right away and it eats me up if the person knows I read it and didn’t respond (people pleaser, remember?). So deactivate these and respond when it works for your schedule without the guilt!
Zoe’s Kitchen because meals for new mom’s don’t have to be homemade. I prefer to make meals (especially this one) to be honest, but sometimes life happens (and sometimes sitters cancel last minute). Zoe’s Kitchen has a Family Meal option. The food is fresh and flavorful and they make it easy to order, pick-up, and deliver.
Provide Proof of the Easter Bunny. It’s crazy how much bunny print resemble all-purpose flour. And how you can find the Easter Bunny’s exact footprint stencil here.
Set their clocks back by 5 minutes or more. We tried to OK-to-Wake clock and honestly hated it. But a simple large-read digital? Perfect. We have this one. Early on (age of 2?) we taught both girls what a 7 looked like and it’s still a hard-fast rule in our house that they can not come out of their rooms in the morning until they see that 7 as the first number. When they were asleep Christmas Eve David sneaked in and set their clocks back 30 minutes, giving us the buffer we needed to be bright-eyed and busy-tailed when Christmas morning came. Call us the Grinch if you want. We called it brilliant!
Insist that they don’t smile for a picture. If they keep giving me that forced, awkward “are we done yet” smile when I’m trying to snag a picture, I switch my method. I say, “you know what y’all, this isn’t working, so don’t smile for this next picture. I’m serious, don’t you dare smile.” This usually sends them into giggles and BOOM, a great, natural picture is born. (Note: you can’t overuse this or it will stop working so save it for when you really need a good shot).
Chick-fil-A has a mom’s valet. I’m not sure if every location does, but at ours I can go through the drive-through with the kids buckled in, order our food, pay, then park. When we walk in, they lead us to a table all set up with all our food, napkins, and even those plastic, sticky place-mats. It. Is. Awesome.
Squeezable garlic. Molly convinced me to try it and I must admit, I’m hooked. I’ll still peel and press when I have time, but in a pinch, this stuff is incredible! See also: squeezable basil, ginger, and parsley. (I found this large one at BJ’s)
Tell them it’s spicy. Usually I am all about sharing food and letting them try mine, but sometimes I just want to meal without kid fingers poking into it, so for this I just give this shrug look and say, sorry ya’ll, it’s super spicy.
Buy squeezable peanut butter or almond butter. In fact, buy squeezable anything. But seriously, check out Yumbutter. I know we have it at our Target. They have healthy add-ins, it taste delicious, and it makes it so easy to squeeze on an apple or banana, make a quick sandwich, bring on a hike or picnic, or squeeze right in your mouth (we’ve all done it).
Make salads dippable. Because kids love to dip. Because it’s easier than stabbing lettuce with a fork. Because nothing is mixed together that way. Because it’s fun!
Magical Tooth fairy money. Sometimes she has gold coins (that I hear are very similar to the $1 coins you can get at your local bank) and other times it’s a glittery $1 bill (which I hear she makes using spray adhesive and glitter, then letting it air-dry for an hour or two).
Offer to time them. They don’t want to put on shoes? Don’t want to clear their plates? How fast can you organize the shoes? Any unwanted task becomes fun with this magical sentence: “Want me to time you? Ready? GO! 1… 2… 3…” This one still works for us, even at age 6.
That’s all I have for now but I in no way believe it’s a comprehensive list, so please make my day and chime in with your favorite parenting tricks and tips!
What if I time you to see how quickly you can do it? Ready… GO!