Over the past 7 years of motherhood, I like to believe I’ve adopted a combination of hands-on and hands-off parenting. I’m not a helicopter mum but also not a free-range mum. I’m somewhere in the middle. I set boundaries that allow me to sit back and relax. You might say I’ve found a creative way to be a little lazy in motherhood. And I’m okay with that. Besides, we all need little mummy hacks to make life easier so we can spend the time and energy on the things we enjoy!
Here are some of my favourite mummy hacks:
Online grocery shopping.
Getting groceries delivered is fantastic but I’ve always enjoyed the click and collect option. On Monday mornings I quickly look through my pantry and fridge and scribble a menu/meal plan for the week. I hop onto my favourite grocery online store and work through the menu day by day, remembering to add in snacks, cleaning products and household supplies. I can usually pick it up that afternoon and have supplies ready for dinner.
I’ve managed to take note of all the cafés, restaurants and play centres in my area which offer free babycinos. So when I want to head out for a coffee with my friends, I can keep my little one topped up with her own little cup of frothy milk. It’s even better when the local drive-through offers them free. Use it to encourage the kids to get ready for school on time. ? The same goes for working out which restaurants in the area offer a kids-eat-free night. Hello budget-friendly date nights, no sitter needed!
Every piece of laundry that gets hung is a piece that doesn’t have to be folded! You can go one step further and hang it on a clothes hanger, on the washing line. No double handling there.
Again, with the lazy genius– buy all the same socks. If they’re all plain white crew socks, there’s no need to match them and it doesn’t matter if one disappears.
Keeping the shower clean.
Want to know what’s super fun to a toddler? Being able to use a spray bottle, scrubbing brush and squeegee. These items permanently live in our shower. I put a little vinegar and water in the spray bottle and the kids can have fun spraying the walls, scrubbing the tiles and then squeegeeing the walls and floor. There are no toys to clean up after the shower and they’re helping keep the shower clean!
If you’re already going to the effort of making a shepherd’s pie or lasagne, make two and freeze one for later. Not only does this reduce cooking time and make using the oven more efficient but you’re not doubling up on the dishes it takes to prepare the food.
A variation of this is to cook a larger quantity of meat to last you a few meals. Cooking a large roast chicken could give 3 nights’ worth of food. Roast chicken night one, chicken wraps night two, and a soup or pasta night three. Making a large batch of tex-mex or spiced mince (bulked up with grated veggies) could give you tacos, nachos, or serve with rice and beans in a burrito.
Find a friend.
Find a friend with children the same age as yours and enjoy taking turns watching the kids. On one Friday morning, the children play together at my place. The next week they’re at hers and I get a few child-free hours. Often the children are so busy playing with each other, I am relegated to making snacks and reading my book!
Want a little extra sleep?
When my big boy was still little, I used to set up a basket of books or activities in his room while he was asleep at night. When he woke in the morning, rather than coming to get me right away he would get distracted by the activities and I’d enjoy an extra 20 mins of shut-eye. Change the activities each day to keep it fun and exciting and it works well!
Just add water.
Not really a hack but sometimes when you’re struggling with an over-tired or grumpy little one, I remember to “just add water”. When my child is full of big feelings, I give him water in some form or another and the mood shift is incredible. I offer a drink, a bath, some bubbles or a tub of water to play with and, just like that, the mood resets.
I could go on, but I would love to know your tips and tricks or mummy hacks!