“Wow, that was easy," said no mom ever.
We love the ride of motherhood, but let's face it: Sometimes it can get a little bumpy. We here at Team Motherly are very familiar with these bumps, so we decided to share the tricks we've learned over the years to help things run a little more smoothly...
Here are 20 ways to make your life easier:
1. Bulk-buy kids' presents when they go on sale, and keep a stash hidden away—maybe even wrapped and labeled with a post-it note. Neighbor surprises your kid with an unexpected holiday present? No sweat, you (just so happen to) have one for her too.
2. Prepare lunches the night before.
3. Bulk cook on Sundays.
4. Teach your kid to do for themselves—when my daughter started picking out her own clothes, it was a game changer.
(Pro-tip: Reorganize their drawers so they can reach all of their clothes on their own).
And while we're on clothing—
5. Pick out outfits for the week on Sundays.
6. Buy kids clothes with a specific color scheme, so more tops match more bottoms.
7. When you cook, make double the recipe and then freeze for easy meals when things get hectic.
8. For babies, pre-make batches of baby food and freeze in ice-cube trays so you can pop out/defrost as needed.
This also works for toddler food if you ever need to feed them separately from the rest of the family—freeze tiny burger patties, zip-locks of meat sauce, etc.
9. Schedule out your day by the hour—but make sure you schedule in time for relaxing too.
10. Wake up an hour earlier than your kid, to get a few things done, or simply for a little quite me time.
11. Stick to a nap schedule and a set bedtime (within reason). It helps to plan out your day.
12. DECLUTTER! Less stuff = less cleanup!
(Pro-tip: check out Motherly's Simplified Home Class!)
13. Place a selection of (safe, healthy) snacks where your kids can get them by themselves.
14. Keep an "oops" kit in the car, even if—especially if—you no longer use a diaper bag. It contains an extra set of clothes for everyone in the family, some diapers, $20, a few snacks, an umbrella, a flashlight, and a first aid kit.
15. Only go through mail once a week to avoid the constant weeding through bills and junk.
16. Keep a basket of "going out to dinner things" by the door—baggies of crayons, small books, coloring books, stickers, toy cars, etc. If you have last minute plans, you can just grab them and go.
17. Keep a potty in the car (and a bag of paper towels and plastic bags and wipes)...comes in handy!
18. Prepare the coffee machine the night before.
19. If you child has a favorite toy or lovey, buy a second one and stash it—it will save a lot of tears when “Bunny" gets destroyed by the dog.
20. Embrace the chaos. Easier said than done, we know, but when you can find joy in the imperfect and beauty in the mess, it all seems to be a little easier.