Best Of "Mommy" Tips
1. Put First Things First.
As moms, we can get overwhelmed by the amount of responsibilities we carry. Sometimes cleaning house, doing laundry, cooking and just keeping our kids clean can get in the way of what's most important: spending quality time with our kids while we can. Our kids are only in our daily lives for so long; the rest of our responsibilities will always be there. Nothing should be more important than giving them the time, love and attention they need. If we can keep that perspective in mind, we will never regret it. And if the following tips help free up time to spend with kids, they are worth trying out! Here is a great article about spending quality time with your child: https://www.thechildrenstrust.org/parents/library/best-parenting-practices/159-quality-family-time.
2. Keep An Emergency "Mommy" Kit In Your Vehicle.
The unexpected seems to happen frequently in the life of a mom. Lots of times, we are caught unprepared while we are away from home and then we end up stressed. Keeping an emergency kit in my car has come in so handy so many times it is worth adding to this list. Diapers, pull-ups, wipes, snacks, drinks and a change of clothes, as well as some cheap new dollar toys are lifesavers in drastic situations. My mother-in-law taught me about the dollar toys. By having something new that the child has never seen before, you can capture their attention when an appointment is taking too long or they are throwing a fit and you can't go home yet. It does not take much to interest a child. Making a mommy kit can also be used as a great gift for another mom. Just put together some essentials and store them in decorative bag or box, tie a ribbon on top and you have a great, useful Christmas gift!
3. Put A Toybox In Your Living Room For Some Quick Clean-up.
There are so many options these days for toyboxes that they don't even have to look like one anymore. Keeping a toybox in your living room allows for the quick gather and dump when neccesary. Whether a friend is stopping by shortly or you are just too tired to organize but don't want to go to bed with a messy floor, the toybox is a great tool for saving organization for later.
4. Keep Heat-Up Meals On Hand At All Times.
So many moms these days put pressure on themselves to cook an impressive, delicious, healthy supper every night filled with various options of delightful dishes. While this is a noble task to accomplish, we need to face that sometimes, we just can't do it. And if doing it means we are going to be cranky with our husbands and kids and good for nothing else after, maybe we should consider our "heat-up" friends. Even health-concious moms can keep a can of healthy soup on hand, or cook over the weekend and have leftovers to heat up. This saves stress and energy when we feel we can't cook.
5. Viva and Scarves: A Mom's Best Friends.
When a child enters your life, many times beauty falls lower down on the totem pole of priorities. Sometimes, it is just plain impossible to have the time we need to shower, blow dry and style our hair, put our makeup on and have clean, trendy outfits ready to wear. Therefore, we need some fast solutions to look good in less time. Two easy ways to keep ourselves looking stylish and pretty are using scarves as headbands, and Viva paper towels as oil absorbents. If your hair is too crazy to mess with or you just don't have time, tie a scarf around like a headband and pull it back in a bun. This creates a trendy look and you can choose whatever style of scarf you want! For inspiration on different ways to style with a scarf, visit http://www.pinterest.com/pin/486811040943167939/. And keep a stash of Viva paper towels handy. They work very well as oil and sweat absorbing sheets while you are out during the day. Plus, they are much cheaper than purchasing name brand oil absorbing sheets.
6. Take Your Showers At Night.
If you have always been a morning shower person, it may be time to switch now that you are a mom. It is hard to take a shower when your four-year old won't sit still for five minutes. You can either blow dry your hair afterwards, or just braid it and sleep with it wet. Then all you have to do is style it with a straightner or curling iron in the morning. This tip has added benefits as well. Not only will the warm water relax your muscles and get you ready for bed, you will feel clean and pretty again - possibly more in the mood for hubby when you two finally make it to bed together.
7. Start Buying in Bulk and Stocking A Pantry.
If you are a weekly grocery shopper, you can save time and money by switching to once a month shopping and buying in bulk. You will have supplies on hand and it is usually cheaper to buy in bulk. As a mom, it is such a pain to load up the kids to go get one item you've run out of. It is much better to have a supply you can always pull from in your pantry.
8. Throw Your Child's Toys In The Dishwasher For Cleaning/Sanitization.
This is such a great idea for saving some money and elbow grease. Just load your dishwasher with your childs toys for an easy way to clean and sanitize them! Not only will your arms and hands be happy, but so will your wallet when you're not using all those Clorox wipes!
9. Fill Little Baggies With Healthy Foods For A Grab And Go Snack.
Part of the reason we moms like things like fruit snacks, poptarts, nutragrain bars and chips are that they come in ready to go, one serving packages. That is so convenient for a mom who is out of time and trying to get out the door. But we end up setting bad eating habits for our children (and ourselves). An easy way to keep the convenience but up the nutrition is to bag up individual portions of fruit, veggies, pretzels, etc. You can also snack on these to include more vitamins and nutrients in your diet!
10. Start Using A Crockpot If You Don't Already.
It is so wonderful to not have to worry about cooking, yet still have a hot, nutritous meal waiting for supper time. Crockpots provide that luxury with not much effort. A lot of recipes are out there and they are usually simple with fabulous results. If as a mom you have not explored the joys of crockpot cooking, now is the time! Below is one of my favorite recipes from Linda Larsen at busycook.food.com. It's called Crockpot Chicken Supreme.
- 5 slices bacon
- 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- 10 oz. can condensed cream of chicken soup or 10 ounce jar of four cheese alfredo sauce
- 4 oz can sliced mushrooms, drained, or 1 onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup swiss cheese, diced
- In large skillet, cook bacon until crisp. Remove bacon from skillet and drain on paper towels. Crumble bacon and set aside in refrigerator.
- In bacon drippings in skillet, cook chicken over medium heat 3-4 minutes or until light brown, turning once. Place in 4-6 quart slow cooker. Top with mushrooms or onions (or both!).
- In skillet, heat soup, scraping up pan drippings, and pour over chicken in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low setting for 4-5 hours, or until chicken registers 160°F on a meat thermometer.
- Top chicken with diced cheese and sprinkle with bacon. Cover and cook on high for 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted.
- Note: You can use frozen chicken breasts for this. Brown them, as directed, in the bacon drippings, then cook on low for 6-8 hours, until a food thermometer registers 160 degrees F.