Oh Pinterest, you know how to win this mama’s heart. Let me just express my overall excitement when I find things that can make my life a little easier — mom hacks.
As a mom and former teacher, resourcefulness is something that I found to be almost mandatory. We find ourselves in front of a situation that makes us want to release our inner beast. Have you had that moment where you’re looking at your family or playroom asking yourself how this space ended up looking like Godzilla tore through it? Or question how to redirect the chaos that comes with a toddler meltdown?
I don’t know about you, but I find myself dreaming of living in Marie Kondo’s home or just wanting to tap into her amazing way of thinking (she is the author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing). I feel like I am always on this journey of redoing, removing, and reorganizing.
I thought I’d provide 15 mom hacks that can make your life a little easier — from helping littles sleep to organizing your space.
Here’s to conquering our daily mama tasks with a little more ease.
1. Teach Me Time! Talking Alarm Clock & Night-Light:
Do you have early risers? You know the ones that wake up before the sun rises? Well lucky for you, this little amazing clock will help those early risers know when it’s time to wake up. It not only teaches your little one how to tell time, but turns green when it’s time to start the day. It allows them time to rest and helps adjust their schedule to be a little more in sync with everyone else’s.
2. The Catchie:
Does your car look like mine? You know—a compost bin on wheels? No matter how many times I clean my car, I continue to find toys or food that have been missing for awhile. My youngest has the ability to launch things as if she’s the Incredible Hulk, and also a keen ability to hide things as if she’s planning a scavenger hunt. This is the solution to all. No more sticky food on your car floor or under the car seat. It’s easy to remove and clean! Boom, your welcome.
3. IKEA Wall Pockets:
These are amazing! Take it from me, I use these in my car. They slip perfectly around the car’s headrest posts. It really acts as a great space saver and is the ultimate way to organize all the essentials—from extra clothes, first-aid resources, hair ties/brush, hand sanitizer, shoes, wipes/diapers, snacks/sippy cups, etc. Let’s just say my OCD side is thrilled due to this very affordable and useable product.
4. Muffin Tins:
These things not only make great breakfast treats or daytime snacks, but can be used as a tool for crafting, organizing, making hardboiled eggs, refining your kiddos’ motor skills, BBQ condiment holder/organizer, and a party drink tray. Just take a look at Pinterest under “muffin tin hacks” or check out this great list. You won’t regret it. This has to be my favorite muffin tin hack. Genius!
5. Orphan Socks:
Do you have a box of single socks? I continue to be puzzled on where the missing sock ends up. Did my dryer eat them? Did my kid flush it? Did it find it’s way to a magical sock land that was created to drive all moms crazy? Either way, here’s a great way to use that sock that no longer has a partner. Do you have a Swiffer or something similar? Just wrap that lonely chenille sock around the head of the floor cleaning product, and you immediately have a floor duster/cleaner. It doesn’t scratch your floor and saves money. Another use for lost socks—make puppets. Have fun using missing buttons and socks to not only help your kiddos with their fine motor skills, but entertain them by creating a kids’ puppet theater. It’s a win all the way around.
6. “O” Cereal:
Yes, classic cereal like Cheerios, Froot Loops, Honey O’s, etc. Potty training your boys? Make it entertaining for them. Help them aim into the toilet by giving them something to focus on. Want to refine your child’s hand and eye coordination? Want them to learn their colors? Have them make a necklace for themselves or as a gift. Take an edible necklace with you while you run errands so you have an immediate toy and snack for your toddler.
7. Rubber Bands:
Does your kid LOVE soap? As in they pump so much soap from the dispenser they could take a bath from the amount they use? Well, use the rubber band as an aid to minimize the amount of soap used. Just place it on the pump/stem of the soap, where it moves up and down. Can’t open a jelly jar? No problem, wrap a rubber band around the lid of the jar (to create resistance) and turn. Are you pregnant and feel your pre-pregnancy jeans a little more snug? No problem, just grab a hair band and wrap around the button, through the loop, and back around the button. Here’s a great link showing you how, along with some other pregnancy hacks. You just gained a little more time loving on your pre-pregnancy jeans. Don’t want an apple to brown? Just cut up the apple slices, and secure them to look as a whole apple again, wrap the rubber band around the apple, and you have a yummy sliced apple that is ready to eat by your kid’s lunch time.
8. Cupcake Liners:
Remember our muffin tin hacks? Well, you can add some cupcake liners into the mix too. Just place the liners in the muffin tins to add your paint for your kids to create their next masterpiece. Is it a hot summer day that makes popsicles a must have snack, but your toddler walks, plays, and eats leaving their popsicle to melt down their hand/arm? No problem! Just cut a hole in the middle of the liner, slip it up to meet the bottom of the popsicle so it melts within the liner versus all over your kiddo. Here’s a look at how it’s done, and a few other summer life hacks. Don’t want bugs in your drinks? Cut a hole in the middle of the liner and slide it down the straw to cover the top of the glass.
9. Band-Aids (regular and liquid):
These guys are not just a helpful tool for those boo boos and ouchies, but can really help for other situations that may come up. Are you traveling and need to cover some electrical plugs, just take a couple of band-aids and cover them up. Heading to a big family festival or family vacation and need a fast and effective way to put your information on your kiddo (in case they get lost)? No worries. Just write your information on top of your child’s hand and put the Skin Shield over it. Let it dry, and it will last all day like a temporary tattoo.
10. Mason Jars:
I don’t know about you, but mason jars are one of my favorite things. We’ve seen them used at weddings, outdoor events, and of course for beverages. What’s great is that they can be used for SO many other things. Want to plant some herbs or teach your kiddos about how plants grow? Go ahead and create a small planter using a mason jar. Not only can the kids watch what’s happening inside the jar, but they are transportable. Create a natural bug repellent that’s easy to make and reuse. Want to create a traveling nightlight? Just take a mason jar and place a small glow stick to make an immediate lantern. Want to create a great gift for a teacher or friend? Use a mason jar to create a mini spa gift (pedicure/manicure items), a chocolate s’more package (graham crackers, marshmallows, chocolate), or plant a pretty succulent.
11. Battery Operated Portable Fan:
This really isn’t a “hack”, but a must have during hot Texas summers. If you haven’t already experienced a very cranky kiddo in a stroller during hot temps, just know it’s not pretty. Just think how hot sitting in a stroller can be during those 90+ temps. They now make them baby proof, where it won’t hurt curious little fingers. So just snap it on and comfortably enjoy your family adventures. Trust me, this was a gem for our family outings!
12. Makeup Bag:
So maybe you have a three pouch makeup bag laying around or have seen one like it at Target. I’ve seen some pretty amazing ideas using these bags, mostly used as a kid’s entertainment bag. From traveling to keeping them occupied at a restaurant, they are easy to clean, carry, and reuse. You can hang it on the car headrest on a road trip for your older kiddos to reach markers, books, snacks, earphones, etc. Heading to your favorite restaurant, fill it up with utensils, coloring sheets/colors, sippy cup, reusable placemat (another great buy), and bibs for trips to restaurants.
13. Pool Noodles:
Yes, I’m sure you all have seen these throughout all “life hack” must-haves, but you have to agree, these things can be used universally. Just take a look at Pinterest under “pool noodle hacks” at some pretty amazing tips on incorporating these in your daily life (pool or not). Save money by finding these at the dollar store to be used throughout your home.
14. Trusty Crockpot:
Sure we all know that crockpots are pretty amazing for those easy prep meals to feed our bellies. Usually, when we think crockpot, we also assume “slow cooker”. That’s not the case with some of these tips. Try cooking multiple hot dogs upright (up to 60) in the crockpot so you don’t have to grill them or find a big pot to boil them. This is great for large picnic parties!
15. Magic Eraser:
This thing has saved me from so many headaches. I can’t even begin to tell you how amazing this product is in our household. From cleaning rubber shoes to floor boards, to taking off shower mold to sharpie marks on the wall, I have grown to love this product as my ultimate go-to hack. Here are a few things it can surprisingly clean: wall/floor scuff marks, rust, coffee/tea stains, hair dye, microfiber couches, permanent markers, hardened dirt/bugs on your car, and helps white items look brand new.