Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday: 31 Mom Hacks

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Just a few household items, some creativity, and you can make those long summer parenting days just a little easier while keeping the kids happy, too!

Did you know according to a NEW Groupon survey, most parents are ready to send their kids BACK to school after 13 days of summer vacation?  Are you one of those parents?  I would have to disagree with this survey.  When Belinda was growing up, I loved summers.  It was a nice break from the craziness of school, sports, competitions and more.  When she was younger, she spend mid-week in Ocean Grove with family and weekends at home.  Once she got hooked on gymnastics – life changed but summers were fun.

These hacks may not change your life, but they might save your sanity – and give you more time for the things which really matter.

  1. Save time in the morning by putting your children to bed in their school clothes. (Boy moms, especially, swear by this one!)  Would you do this?
  2. Recycle used coffee creamer containers or use our Hide & Peek Pouch for on-the-go snacks. They fit perfectly in diaper bag bottle pockets and car cup holders.
  3. Place two layers of fitted sheets and waterproof mattress pads over your little ones’ beds for easier cleanup of overnight accidents.  Genius!
  4. Keep a portable, Cinch Sac or a Picnic Thermal Tote in your car for wet or soiled baby clothes.
  5. Did you know the shoulder tabs on infant bodysuits are meant to help you pull a soiled outfit down instead of up over the baby’s head? Who would know this? LOL!
  6. Save trips from the car to the house by keeping a Deluxe Utility Tote in your trunk for all of your shopping bags.
  7. Use a makeup brush to apply diaper rash cream to help keep your hands clean.
  8. Poke your ice pop’s stick through a cupcake liner to catch drippy messes and keep hands and clothes clean.
  9. Cupcake liners are also an easy way to protect kids’ drinks from bugs during picnics. Just put one over a plastic cup and pop a straw through the top.
  10. Make more room in your diaper bag by keeping an Essential Storage Tote, packed with an extra blanket, toys and a change of clothes, in the car.
  11. Lay painter’s tape over your door locks to prevent toddlers from locking themselves in their room.
  12. A pool noodle under the fitted sheet makes a great impromptu bedrail.
  13. You can also cut a pool noodle in half lengthwise and wrap it around a door to prevent slammed fingers.
  14. Line a collapsible Stand Tall Bin with a garbage bag to create an on-the-go trash can for camping trips.
  15. Use a hanging shoe storage bag to organize blocks and other small toys.
  16. Keep a sliced apple from browning before lunch by wrapping it in plastic wrap.
  17. Detangle doll hair with a little dish soap and conditioner. OMG!  I wish I knew this before….
  18. Use a pizza cutter to slice pancakes and waffles into bite-sized pieces for little fingers.
  19. Make any footed PJs slip-proof with a little puffy paint on the soles of the feet.
  20. Sunshine can be a surprisingly effective baby stain remover. Just leave the item of clothing outside to dry and watch the stain fade in just a few hours.

 

  1. Fill a Double Duty Caddy with art supplies so it’s ready to go on rainy days.
  2. You can machine wash your kids’ plastic building blocks and other toys in a mesh delicates bag. (Just don’t put them in the dryer!)
  3. Hang bibs on the back of a highchair using removable hooks.
  4. Free up space in your child’s lunch bag by using a frozen juice box as an ice pack.  Did you know lunch thermals were on sale this month????
  5. In a pinch, you can quickly childproof cabinets with hair ties.
  6. Store ice pops vertically in the freezer to make them easier to cut open.
  7. An empty blow-up kiddie pool makes an impromptu play pen indoors or outdoors.
  8. Pack kids’ outfits – tops, pants, socks and accessories – in individual bags or Zipper Pouches for easier travel.
  9. Give each child his or her own Large Utility Tote to carry their laundry to the washer and back from the dryer.
  10. Freeze homemade baby food in an ice cube tray for perfect portion sizes.
  11. Create a giant dry erase mat with a dollar-store shower curtain.

What are some of YOUR favorite mom hacks? Share them with us….

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Clear the Clutter

Key to Help Lower Your Daily Stress

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The school year is winding down.  The kids are already complaining that there is nothing to do.  Work is crazy.  You are juggling more balls than you ever did.  STRESS!

Did you know that “Stress is your resistance to what’s happening”?  That’s right, you are refusing to accept the what is happening.  Instead, you worry and think what shoulda, coulda or woulda happen.  Some would say that stress is just a mindset which can be changed.

The truth is you can conquer daily stress by simply living in the present – just BE here now.  Let go of what you think your life is supposed to look, and simply appreciate it for everything that it is.  I know, easier said then done, right?

Here are some tips on how to reduce your stress from the book “1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently”:

  • Trust your intuition. You don’t need to explain or justify your feelings to everyone, just trust your own inner guidance, it often knows best.
  • Firmly decide what matters and what doesn’t.  Stress comes from the way you react, not the way life is.  Inner peace begins the moment you choose to be mindful by not allowing another person or event to dominate your emotions.
  • Take a deep breath when you need one. You don’t have to solve every problem in your life before you can enjoy being at peace.
  • Keep sanity in your schedule. Say “no” sometimes to good things so you can say “yes” to important things. We can’t do it all so choose wisely.
  • Practice gratitude. Here is that Law of Attraction thing again.  Look for reasons to be grateful, and see them everywhere. Remind yourself how fortunate you are at this moment. The more you appreciate it, the better it’ll be.
  • Detach yourself from the habit of taking things personally.  This has been the hardest thing for me to learn.  Did you know that if you take everything personally, you’ll remain offended for the rest of your life? The truth is that what other people do is often because of them, not you.  As I was once told, “it isn’t all about you”!
  • Focus on the positive. Positive thinking isn’t about expecting the best to happen every time – it’s about accepting what happens every time, and making the best of it. In other words, a sincerely positive attitude is an expression of the way you choose for things to be.
  • Practice patience as you work for your desires.  In a world filled with instant gratification, we must learn the value of patience and perseverance.
  • Spend time with supportive, loving people. Being happy is directly related to the quality of people who you surround yourself with every single day. Yup, the Law of Attraction again.

Whatever is happening in your life right now… The key it NOT to beat yourself up! No matter what!

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Are you struggling with life and has stress got the best of you?  That’s okay.  Be patient with yourself. It years to form these habits, routines and life situations that are creating stress in your life.  There is NO magic wand that will wipe it all away.  It will take some time to make changes.

But I promise you: Even the smallest step in the right direction today will bring you some peace. Take that step. And then take another one tomorrow.

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In what way do you need to lower your daily stress? What is creating needless stress in your life? Share your thoughts with us.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!